Holiday money saving ideas 2010 | Budget, bargain and shop

Shopping list.

Creating a holiday money-saving shopping list is easy. (Photo: Iain Farrell/Flickr/CC BY-ND)

‘Tis the season to shop. Everyone can agree that the holidays are definitely the best time to go out and save a bunch of money on items you’ve always wanted. However, it is also a time of hardship, as most people are either unemployed or wait until the last minute to put together a holiday money game plan. Nevertheless, there are many things you can do to save this season; all you really need is to stay focused, particularly on ways to save money.

Create a holiday money budget sheet

First things first, figure out how much holiday money you have by analyzing how much you can afford to spend. This means you will need to figure in your monthly expenses: rent, food, gas, utilities, etc. Once you come up with a reasonable dollar amount, make sure to stick to it. You may also want to budget in at least $50 over that limit for unexpected expenses.

Make a list and stick to it

Write down all the names of the people you plan to buy gifts for. Then, write out the things you plan on getting for each person on that list, and don’t go overboard or choose items you feel will never be used. What’s the point of spending money on something that will only collect dust?

Remember, you can skip buying individual gifts and get one item for an entire family or group.

Bargain shop with your holiday money

Once you have your list in place and know exactly what you want to buy, it’s time to go hunting. Go online and look for holiday saving deals; there are many holiday money saving opportunities available right at your fingertips. Comparison shopping is the most important thing you can do. You don’t want to settle on the first sweet offer only to beat yourself up later because you could have saved more money somewhere else. So take your time to shop, but start early in the season. The holiday money-saving opportunities won’t last long, so get your list started and begin budgeting now.

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