alison griffiths articles
Alison's Money Rule
Save up for Xmas
Posted November 28, 2011
Originally Published November 9, 2010
Keep your holiday gift debt to a minimum by building up a cash cushion now.
How would you like to have no holiday gift debt? Zero. None. Not a dime. Here’s how.
According to a moneyville.ca on-line poll the average holiday gift tab will be just over $600 this year. And it will all be spent during the seven weeks between now and Christmas.
With a little bit of belt tightening you will have the cash for holiday presents and no nasty credit card bill in the New Year.
1. Brown bag it. I know you’ve heard this one before but it really does work. Cut out three lunches a week at $6 a pop. Saved -- $126.
2. Can the take out coffeetealattecapuccinodonut. This is another money saving nag but, as with the brown bag, it really works and once you get used to it the pain of deprivation disappears. Saved -- $100 (based on a medium coffee and donut once a day)
3. Scissors and Comb. I’ve been cutting my husband’s hair for 30 years. I also cut my two daughters’ hair and now my wiggly grandson. I figure I’ve saved thousands and one of these days they’re going to get an invoice. Cut out one haircut per family member between now and December 25. Saved -- $100 (1 adult, 2 children)
4. Do your own. Maybe not your hair! But manicures and pedicures are actually quite relaxing and fun to do on a cold winter evening. Saved -- $50
6. Eat In. You can do it! Try to make it to Christmas without eating out at night. Saved -- $225. (assuming you would normally eat out three times between now and December 25.)
TOTAL SAVED -- $601
Add in taxes and (depending on which province) you’ve kept $678 in your wallet. You are there!
Those living, working and shopping in the downtown area may scoff at my suburban prices. So take 30 minutes and see what you come up with. I’m betting you could hit $1000 easily.
Contribute your own holiday gift spending expectations to the on-line poll at www.moneyville.ca.
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