The holidays can get pretty expensive, especially when you have children to buy for. This year I was determined to set a budget for my families Christmas shopping and actually stick to it. It’s so easy to get tempted this time of year with all of the amazing deals out there, which is where I always go wrong.
Instead of waiting till New Years to set this new budgeting goal for my family, my husband and I, decided to apply it now. We’re shopping smart this holiday season and the money we save we’re planning our family’s first vacation this summer. I’ve listed our top holiday shopping money saving tips to stretch your dollar this holiday season and what’s worked for us so far this month.
Our biggest money saver has been our credit card with Chase Ultimate Rewards. This rewards program is available to Chase Freedom, Chase Sapphire, and Ink from Chase holders. Everytime I make a purchase using my card I receive points that I can then redeem on a ton of rewards like travel, experiences, merchandise, gift cards, and even cash back. So you can even save your rewards for the year and purchase Christmas gifts with your rewards without spending a dime!
1. Shop Online Through Chase – When you’re doing your online shopping, shop through UltimateRewards.com and earn bonuses on what you buy. And now is the perfect time because Chase is offering extra incentives to cardholders with Ultimate Rewards during the holidays. Why not get rewarded for what you’re going to be buying anyways?
2. Make a budget and stick with it! Nothing relaxes me more than having lists and errands in front of me, plan ahead! Write up a holiday shopping list with who gets what present and how much it should cost, followed with how much you plan on spending on each person. Sometimes I forget what I ordered or bought so this helped keep track of how much I budgeted for each person on my shopping list. Or use what you’ve racked up in points on your rewards credit card as your budget!
3. Start shopping in November. I’ve heard of people shopping early like the beginning of June. But because of return policies I make sure to start no earlier than November.
4. Gift cards are the perfect gifts to buy and usually on the top of holiday wish lists. So turn in those points in exchange for some fabulous gift cards. With Ultimate Rewards you can buy gift cards for the same price you’d pay in store, so a $50 gift card is 5,000 points.
5. This helped us out so much this year, last Christmas we went to a ton of stores to snatch up some holiday gift sets that were marked down to 50%. We were able to get sets for $3 – $8. These are perfect to have for next year for stocking stuffers or quick gifts on hand.
6. Have any tech items on your list? Shop refurbished items to save a ton.
7. I always save more money when I shop online. I hate shopping when I’m stressed because I tend to just buy what I see to get out of there. And there’s always stress at malls during the holidays so it’s so much less stressful at home. And I can enjoy it in my slippers and a cup a coffee while I’m at it.
8. Gift an experience instead of a toy. Chase Ultimate Rewards offers exclusive VIP access to concerts, sporting events, movie premieres and more.
Holidays are hectic enough so simplify your life and buy yourself a gift. The new UltimateRewards.com also provides a personalized experience so it makes it easier to exchange those rewards points in for some awesome gifts that you’ll love and that will save you money! Or save them up and take that family vacation you’ve always wanted! Either way it’s a win win!