How much do you splurge during the gift-giving season? As you purchase gifts for your friends and family, those prices can quickly add up. Though many stores offer sales during the holidays, the cost of gifts can still strain your budget. Fortunately, there are many tips and tricks to help you get everyone on your list a lovely, meaningful gift without overspending.
Staying on a budget can be difficult when buying for birthdays or holidays. However, you can save money on all of your purchases with several careful considerations. Rather than purchasing only name-brand clothes or the latest toys, you can spend a fraction of what you used to by creating homemade gifts or trying out group-gifting. Learn more about the ways you can save money when gifting below.
Give Gift Cards
A fast and easy way to save money on gifts is through gift cards. With a wide selection of stores and restaurants to choose from, gift cards are a versatile gifting option. Moreover, you can choose the amount you want to spend before buying, allowing you to create a budget for that gifting season. Gift cards also give the receiver the freedom to choose his or her own present, rather than you guessing what that person might enjoy.
If you want to save even more, you can even take advantage of the secondary gift card market. Many consumers go online and offer to sell their gift cards at discounted prices. These private sellers can deliver the card number and PIN of a physical gift card to buyers over the web. Even some online retailers sell gift cards at a discount. These electronic gift cards can be transferred to recipients through email or text and used both in-stores and online.
Save With Handmade Gifts
When trying to save money, store-bought gifts may not be the best option. Alternately, handmade gifts can cost very little, if anything at all. As a bonus, they also offer the personalized feeling everyone enjoys. Choosing to create a handmade gift opens up a wide range of options, depending on your creative skills and your loved one’s interests. Some ideas include:
- Baked goods, like cookies or brownies.
- Knitted items, such as clothes or blankets.
- Homemade beauty products such as lotions or make-up.
Social media sites, such as Pinterest, also offer many ideas for clever homemade presents that can save you time and money. Take time to research and think of a sentimental gift that your loved one would enjoy.
Buy in Bulk
Rather than worrying about choosing an entirely unique gift for each person on your list, consider simplifying your shopping by buying in bulk. Whether you buy the same gift in several different colors or customize it yourself, this can be an easy way to save.
Simple items, like white coffee mugs, can easily become personalized gifts with some art supplies. You can use permanent markers, paint and rhinestones to turn a boring mug into a personalized present.
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Often, stores will offer sales for items purchased in mass quantities. By personalizing these items, each of your loved ones will receive an exciting and unique gift that is sure to please.
Recently, decorated mason jars have become beloved gifts that offer functionality and personality. You can easily tap into your creative side this gifting season by creating homemade gifts for everyone your list.
Shop During Sales
Though it takes forethought and planning, shopping during sales will save you hundreds on your total expenses. The best time to buy gifts is typically right after the holidays. For example, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are big sale days that happen after Thanksgiving each year.
With retailers looking to get rid of their stock, this is your time to grab discounted products. By planning ahead, you can get the best deals on gifts before the rush of the holiday season. Here are the common sales every season:
- Spring: kitchen appliances and home decor
- Summer: clothing and outdoor products
- Fall: back-to-school supplies and electronics
- Winter: toys and holiday decorations
Even if you have a particular gift in mind already, there are still ways you can save on your purchase. There are several apps and services that can help you track price changes in products. Downloadable apps and browser extensions are designed to scan the web for the cheapest options and coupons.
Some of these services can also warn you when prices increase. If you have time before you need to make a purchase, you can use these tools to track how prices change. Savings systems like these help to ensure you’re getting the best price.
Try Out Group Gifting
Another way to limit your spending is to reduce the number of gifts you need to buy. Giving smaller or fewer gifts is one way to reduce your expenses while still having something to offer. A common way of doing this is through “Secret Santa” and “White Elephant” parties, in which each participant is in charge of getting one gift for a randomly assigned recipient.
Often, participants also chose to set a price limit so friends do not overspend or feel cheated. In this situation, everyone saves money, enjoys their holiday and receives a gift. This makes group gifting games a popular and easy way to save during the holidays.
Overall, the important thing to remember when gift-giving is that it’s the thought that counts. As time draws closer to the holiday season, be sure to budget yourself to prevent overspending, and find out if there are coupons or sales available.
Moreover, don’t be afraid to give handmade gifts or suggest a group gift-giving game. Chances are, other members of your friend group and family are interested in saving money on gifts as well.
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