Unemployed During The Holidays? These Tips Will Help You Save Money

Unemployed During The Holidays? These Tips Will Help You Save Money

If you don't have a job during the holiday season, you're probably experiencing an incredible amount of stress. The holiday season is expensive, and not having an income makes it difficult to enjoy the time of year. You might struggle to make ends meet. Fortunately, there are a few ways you can save money during this holiday season.

Make a Holiday Budget

It's unrealistic to think that you can follow your usual budget during the holidays. To set yourself up for success, you should create a holiday budget. Include presents, travel expenses, and grocery costs in your budget.

Start Shopping Early

If you don't start shopping months before the holidays, you could end up paying more for items. Supply and demand always come into play with prices. With supply chain issues, the cost of goods is likely to go up as the holiday nears. You can save money and find great deals if you start shopping early.

Stay Home

If you spend every holiday season visiting a laundry list of relatives you don't like, stop the tradition. Save money by staying home this holiday season. In addition to helping your finances, you can also help your stress level.

If You Travel, Be Flexible

Staying home isn't always an option for the holidays. If you have to travel, you can save money by being flexible about your travel dates. Shop around for the best deals on flights and fly out on cheaper days of the week. For instance, a Tuesday flight is usually much cheaper than a Saturday one.

Set Expectations for Gifts

If you have children or young relatives, you might feel the pressure to spend all of your money on gifts. To help you stick to the budget, create expectations this year. Let everyone know that you don’t have a lot of money for presents this year. If you have a large family, you can suggest a secret Santa or ask for people to spend under a certain amount on their gifts. Your family will understand.

Give Gifts That Don’t Cost a Thing

Not all presents need to cost money. If you want to spend less this season, make handmade gifts or donate your time as a gift. Help a family member with a household project or offer to babysit for your sister. Some of the best presents don’t cost anything at all. If you have any unopened presents from previous years, regift them. You might have unused jewelry or appliances that make the perfect gift for a friend.

Look for Old Gift Cards

Every year, about $3 million in gift cards are unspent. There’s a good chance you have gift cards from previous years. Even if you only have $5 left on a gift card, that’s $5 you don’t need to spend from your bank account. Look in all the nooks and crannies of your house for unused gift cards.

Do Potluck Parties

If you like to host parties for the holidays, you could spend hundreds of dollars on food. Instead of providing all of the food yourself, have others contribute by making the event a potluck. As an added bonus, potlucks are fun events. You might create a new annual tradition.

Shop at Thrift Stores

Whether you’re looking for the perfect outfit or you need some cute holiday decorations, you can shop at the thrift store. During the holidays, you can find everything from fancy dresses to holiday sweaters at thrift stores. You don’t need to break your budget to find clothing or decorations. In fact, you may even be able to shop at a thrift store online.

Send E-Cards

Paper cards are expensive, and this is particularly true when you send customized cards with photos on them. Rather than spend $100 or more on holiday cards this year, keep things simple. You can send e-cards for free or at a low cost. If you do an online search, you can find a variety of companies that offer e-cards. Sending them also takes less time than sending traditional cards, so you can focus more time on the job search.

Get Free Shipping

If you order most of your presents online, you could be spending big money on shipping. Why not save money by taking advantage of free shipping? Shop online with retailers that offer free shipping on all purchases or make sure you meet the minimum purchase amount for free shipping. Online shopping also saves you money on gas costs.

Forget About Black Friday

Black Friday isn’t as great as it seems. All too often, the “deals” on these days are no better than any other time of the year. Typically, people spend more money on Black Friday than they would at other times of the year. They overspend and are fooled into thinking they saved money.

Upcycle Your Decor

Before you go out and do some shopping for holiday decor, think about what you already have at home. Do your lights and ornaments from last year still seem intact? If so, don’t buy new items. You can spruce them up a bit by getting crafty. For instance, you can transform cookie cutters into ornaments and use tinsel to decorate your table.

Collect Outdoor Decor

Outside, you can find plenty of great holiday decor. If you go on a nature walk, you can collect pinecones, branches, and other natural decor. Use the items to accentuate your current holiday decor.

Be Wary of Porch Pirates or Car Thieves

Every holiday season, people look for opportunities to steal. They look for unlocked cars and packages on porches. If you don’t want someone to steal your presents, you should be cautious. Lock your car and try to be home while you wait for packages.

Focus on Experiences Over Presents

This year, spend more time with your loved ones and less time worrying and presents or decorations. Even though you may not have much money to spend, you can be rich in experiences.

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