Holiday Savings Hacks

According to NBC News, holiday shoppers can be expected to spend at least $682 billion this season. If you are worried about how much money you will spend this holiday season, try some of these money saving tips to help you enjoy the holidays without the stress of holiday debt hanging over your head.

Plan Ahead
Take a page out of the big man in red’s playbook and make a list. Talk to family and friends early this year and get an idea of what they might like to be treated with. If they aren’t sure (or you need a last-minute gift), use this as an opportunity to cash in any gift cards or store credit you have been accumulating. If you are planning on throwing a holiday party, make a detailed list of your menu and decor. According to’s Holiday Budget Tips Shopping Guide, budgeting out a specific amount per person or item is a great way to stay on track and not overspend. Keep track of what you actually spend versus what you budgeted and if you find a deal you weren’t expecting, feel free to roll the extra savings to another gift or even treat yourself for a job well done!

Make the Most of Your Holiday Party
Holiday parties are a great chance for everyone in your life to relax and enjoy one another’s company. But they can be a major source of financial stress for the host. Don’t let the burden of hosting ruin your next holiday gathering.

  • Make it potluck. If you will be providing food, try having a potluck instead. This is an effective way to make sure there is plenty of food without spending hours in the kitchen and hundreds of dollars on ingredients.
  • Provide a batch cocktail. Instead of providing several drink options, decide on one (or two, budget pending) batch drinks to serve at your party. Include it in the invitation and let guests know they are welcome to bring any other drink they would prefer.
  • Have a beer (or wine) exchange. This is a great way to give everyone a party favor without spending a dime. Have each guest bring a 6- or 12-pack of beer, put all the beers on the table, and then everyone can refill their case with new beers to either drink during the party or take home as a gift.

Start Saving Early
To make sure you don’t get overwhelmed this holiday season, start saving early. Take advantage of online savings apps to see where you can cut costs and then invest those funds into a holiday savings account like MCCU’s Christmas Club Account. This specific account allows you to make a direct deposit each month and then will transfer the balance to your primary savings account in mid-October, just in time to start your holiday planning list.

Avoid stress and anxiety this year and spend more time focusing on friends and family. Make a list, craft a realistic budget, and start saving early and you will find this holiday season far more enjoyable.