You don’t have to choose between spending big or skimping on gifts this year.
- This holiday season could be quite expensive this year, with inflation driving up the cost of everything.
- Being strategic about where you shop is key to keeping costs down.
- Choosing the right method of payment can also save you money.
Americans spent an estimated $8.9 billion on Black Friday alone last year, and with holiday sales starting even earlier this year, it’s safe to say this holiday season will likely be that of records. Even if you try to be thrifty, you might find it hard to keep your budget from ballooning because inflation has made everything more expensive this year.
But don’t lose hope. The following five tips can help you cut your vacation costs this year without skimping.
1. In-store sales start now
Black Friday may be a few weeks away, but many retailers are already offering holiday deals. If you wait until Black Friday, you could be missing out on some amazing savings. Not to mention, the wait increases the likelihood that some of your must-haves will sell out before you can buy them.
If you can’t find any good sales right now, you can at least do some research for later to find out which retailers have the items you want and how much they normally charge. This will help you identify the best deals when more retailers start cutting prices.
2. Use coupons
Coupons can help you get free shipping or a reduced rate on items you were going to buy anyway. You can find them quite easily by searching for the store name and “coupons” online. However, keep in mind that not all stores carry them, and some only carry them for a limited time.
Don’t just use this tactic on holiday gifts either. Check your local newspaper for coupons on grocery items and use them to cut a few dollars off the cost of your holiday meals.
3. Use credit card rewards
It’s time to cash in those credit card rewards you’ve been racking up all year. You can use cash back credit card points to reduce your credit card bill for the month or to buy gift cards that you can use to buy gifts for others. And if you plan to travel during the holidays, check to see if you have enough miles on your travel rewards credit card to save on flights or hotels.
Be sure, however, to review all of your credit card’s rewards terms and limitations. Some have expiring points or miles with blackout dates that you can’t use at certain times. Know these limits before attempting to cash out your rewards.
4. Use cash instead of cards
When shopping in person, favor cash over cards when possible. Shopping with cash makes us more conscious of our spending, which can prevent us from buying more than planned.
Also, there is no risk of interest charges when using cash as there is when using a credit card. However, you will also not have the opportunity to earn rewards on your purchases.
5. Shop at wholesale clubs
If you’re lucky enough to live near wholesale clubs, shopping at one can help you save on everything from holiday gifts and decorations to meals. However, you have to pay to be a member of one of these clubs, so first assess whether it’s worth it for you.
These tips may not all apply to you, but pick the ones that make sense and try them this year. Keep them in mind as we also transition into 2023. If you prepare ahead of time by saving money and credit card rewards, you could make the holiday season of the year much easier. next.
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