logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
European Travel
Action Movies
Bible Basics
Houseplants
Romance Movies
Creativity
Family Travel


dailyclick
All times in EST

Low Carb: 8:00 PM

Full Schedule
g
g Home Finance Site

BellaOnline's Home Finance Editor

g

Holiday Gifts On A Budget

Guest Author - Reshma Vyas

Practicality and frugality are the themes for this holiday season. The value of thrift is taking on an increased emphasis this holiday season for many consumers fraught with worries about job security, unemployment and rising health care costs as well as the larger economic uncertainty regarding the housing sector and the ensuing volatility of the stock market. For many holiday shoppers, the primary focus is on purchasing gifts that are geared more towards necessities rather than luxuries. It is also worth noting that a significant number of consumers still carry credit card debt from holiday gifts purchased the previous year! Therefore, it is hardly surprising that many families plan to dramatically scale back on their holiday spending this season.

Money-Saving Strategies

1. Avoid layaway as it will only encourage you to spend more and incur additional debt.

2. Do thorough research in terms of comparison shopping, most of which can be done online. Make certain that you understand the retailer’s return policy (this can save both money and frustration later on!). In the frenetic rush of shopping, many consumers often overlook the return policy of the store or vendor in question. Sign up for e-mail alerts from your favorite retailers.

3. Look for unadvertised specials as these can offer additional savings.

4. Utilize the day after Thanksgiving (“Black Friday”) for “field research.” Do not be in a panic mode to purchase gifts as there will be plenty of bargains in December. Avoid shopping excursions to malls during peak hours and try to shop weekdays rather than weekends.

5. Peruse the websites of your favorite specialty retailers and mail-order vendors. They may offer free or discounted shipping, coupons and exclusive savings incentives for online purchases.

6. Try to do price matching whenever possible.

7. Strive to be more disciplined in terms of sticking to your budget and price limits. Stocking stuffers can encompass a wide range of necessities such as batteries, camera accessories, flash drives, stamps, etc. Avoid the most “popular” gift of the season and trendy gifts in general as they are more expensive.

8. Take your circulars and coupons to stores. In order to make the most of door buster sales, do your preparation in advance. Make a list of items that interest you and jot down ideas for “backup” gifts.

Thrifty Holiday Gift Ideas – Homemade And Vintage

Perhaps, this holiday season, more so than any other in recent years, many families and individuals are becoming increasingly drawn to the idea of exchanging homemade gifts. In fact, one can even do a gift exchange without spending any money at all!

1. Hold a “white elephant” gift swap to exchange items of a whimsical or humorous nature.

2. Consider a vintage toy or clothing gift swap. Baby boomers love to collect their childhood. How many of us have old toys, board games, sports and entertainment memorabilia and clothing stuffed in trunks and closets? Consider exchanging vintage leather or denim clothing with friends or family. Even old high school varsity jackets can be traded for fun.

3. There are many inexpensive and easy holiday gifts one can make with limited materials and time. Even a beginner can make beaded jewelry such as earrings or a simple brooch from various materials consisting of fabric, beads and ribbons. Other ideas: a decorative box (the box can be purchased at a crafts supply store), an evening purse; a monogrammed set of bath towels, dinner napkins or handkerchiefs; picture frame; a paperweight; rock art; scrapbook or memory book; or even a holiday card which includes a poem you have written or heirloom family recipe. Consider making your own wrapping paper with paint, photographs and stamps.

Closing Thoughts:

Make a donation in the name of a family member or friend. Donate a toy or handmade gift such as a sweater or blanket to charity.


Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Twitter Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Facebook Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to MySpace Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Del.icio.us Digg Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Yahoo My Web Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Google Bookmarks Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Stumbleupon Add Holiday+Gifts+On+A+Budget to Reddit




RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Home Finance Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2014 by Reshma Vyas. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Reshma Vyas. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Sandra Baublitz for details.

g


g features
eBay Selling Tips

Fall Financial Checkup

How to Make a Budget

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2014 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor