Looking for Christmas budgeting tips? Like most families, you’ve probably set a budget for your holiday spending, promising that this year will be different. The kids don’t need so many toys, you won’t buy for so many people, and we never eat all the food we buy. And like most families, you probably won’t stick to it.

Christmas is the one time of year that all our common sense seems to weaken so much that the mere sight of a cute cuddly toy, or a bargain box of biscuits, is enough to completely overpower it.

Inevitably, when the last twinkly lights fade back into their attic box, and wrapping paper is overflowing from the trash can, that will be when your common sense comes back with a bang. The ‘bang’ being the sound of your credit card bills landing on the doormat.

Ask yourself what you remember about your own childhood Christmas or Christmas five years ago. In fact, what can you remember from last Christmas? I’d hedge a bet that it’s not the material things. Can you name more than 5 presents you received? Or account for the $200 food bill? Beyond the turkey, that is…

So how can you avoid the January Bills Blues this year?

Christmas Budgeting Tips

Shop with Cash

Set yourself an affordable budget and keep it in cash. You’ll spend much more efficiently, especially if you see it running low. Put away the credit card.

christmas budgeting

Write a List

It seems like an obvious tip, but it’s one often ignored. Impulse buying is the Achilles heel of all well-meaning gift buyers.

Grocery Shop Early

Avoid panic buying food by dodging the grocery store and the ‘end of world’ crowd mentality. Crowds of people grabbing may tempt you to do likewise. Shop early for long-life items -just remember to hide them from the kids…and yourself!

Whether you have a house full of children eager to see what Santa brings, or will be enjoying a quiet and intimate holiday season, you can be sure that the most important things you’ll make this year are memories, not credit card charges.

Also read: 6 Ways to Make Your Budget Christmas Magical