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Christmas presents

Save £20 a week for a merry Christmas

We may want to bury our heads in the sand about it a while longer, but Christmas is heading our way. But don’t hate us for mentioning it – start thinking about it this week too and you could save hundreds by the time the festive season rolls around.

If you start saving £20 a week from this week you’ll have saved £220 by Christmas time. With our research revealing the average UK adult planned to spend £530 on Christmas last year, you’ll be almost half way towards this figure by saving less than £3 a day.

However, if you wait until the beginning of November, you’ll need to save more than £30 a week to get the same figure. This is nearly £4.50 a day. Could you make a start now?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone with Christmas planning and we’re here to help you find those festive shortcuts. Read on for some practical tips to kick off your festive season.

Five festive tips for you this Christmas

1. Work out your Christmas budget

It can be difficult to remember all the costs of Christmas. What about all the food and drink you need? Do you know everyone you need to buy a present for? Our Christmas Money Planner shows you how to work out yours. Even better, we’ve got anticipated averages for each expense to help you pinpoint what you’ll spend if you’re struggling.

 

2. Start thinking about Christmas food

We don’t mean you have to go out and get the turkey right now. But have a think about everything you might need. Is there anything you could stock up on and freeze now to help spread your costs?

3. Shop around for gifts

With a bit more time to go until Christmas, you have the chance to think more carefully about where you get your presents.  Online could potentially be cheaper, for example, and you could even try buying from eBay. Don’t forget to consider delivery costs when buying online, though!

4. Take a look at your bank statements

Is there anything there you forgot you signed up to? Subscriptions can be a very quick win for a bit of extra cash – see if you can cancel yours such as TV streaming services and gym membership (no-one goes to the gym around Christmas anyway).

5. Book your train tickets

Are your loved ones scattered round the country? If you’re going to be travelling around at Christmas, take a look at booking your tickets now and you could score some cheaper deals.

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  • Jodie wrench / 29 November 2015

    The best advice I have is save with parks Xmas catalogue you just save a small amount each week or monthly (whenever it is you get paid) then in October / November you get your love to shop vouchers that you have saved all year for. The best thing is the catalogue does food hampers alcohol hampers toys etc . They don't charge you interest or anything on top like normal catalogue do. The way it works is what you pay in during the year is what you get. Also if you become a agent with them and you get orders off your friends and family you earn a bonus rate you can use that either towards your payment that you are making each week or you can have the bonus amount sent to you in a check. Sorry if the advice I have given is something that someone else has already said. I can honestly say saving with parks has made my Christmas and previous Christmas so much easier and stress free.

  • jaci / 25 October 2015

    To Tracy whos messed up this year, I know its easy for people to say Christmas is not about expensive presents when they can afford them but if you have little ones fun is the best present,try wrapping a big box with balloons in and let let them run riot with them. Best Wishes to you all x

  • Lisa brombley / 24 October 2015

    I have brought most of my family's Christmas presents already I just have my 2 girls to buy for, I have been collecting the codes from the daily mail for a free Christmas tree and I have been collecting extras points for the free turkey which I will take to my mums. Mum always cooks Christmas dinner and boxing day dinner and we all chip in with the cost and bring our own booze. My top tip is to look on ebay I have brought the majority of my presents from there delivered from China (usually within 4 weeks), postage is often free and majority of it is good quality, I can also sew so will be making my sister a skirt for Christmas and I have a photographer friend who is going to do a shoot with all the grandkids (with individual family pics) which I can then get printed however I want for the grandparents etc so use what you can to save money

  • Penny / 23 October 2015

    Home made gift are a big thing now,go online and find out what you could make yourself. Some thing you can even make in bulk and give to a number of people and save a bundle, just make sure your home made gift doesn't cost more than you eould have spent on gifts. From choc truffles or bath salts to personalised picture frames and home decorations. There are plenty of ideas out there for every type of skill, im sure everyone could find something they think is worth trying. ;)

  • Tracey / 23 October 2015

    Well i have messed up big time this year. I got myself into debt because i was working a zero hour contract and now i have more going out than coming in. We are going to have a horrible xmas this year. I just dont know what to do. It is making me so depressed. Has any one got any advice.

    ADMIN: Sorry to hear you're struggling, Tracey. You may find some useful tips in our recent blog - https://blog.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/five-different-ways-to-make-cash-for-christmas. If you're finding your debt unmanageable, there are places you can go for free, confidential advice. Our debt advice locator tool could help you find somewhere local to you - https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/tools/debt-advice-locator.

  • Lauren / 21 October 2015

    Christmas encourages people to spend too much money on things that aren't needed. Take the time to see what it is you actually need and get as much in advance as possible - definitely worth it - only one day!!

  • Lynsey Turner / 20 October 2015

    Don't you mean £20 a month?

  • Dawn / 20 October 2015

    Buy gifts Black Friday weekend , look out for frozen food offers now and store for later

  • Shelley j / 16 October 2015

    Save with park! Can start the November the year before and can use the vouchers almost everywhere and last year they were delivered in October in plenty of time for Xmas. Plus u can use them in Iceland for your frozen food shop and they do fresh veg and alcohol win win

  • Katie / 15 October 2015

    I save all my points at tesco for Christmas and top all throughout the year so I don't have to pay for my Christmas food shop in December. I also start buying presents in September so that I can spread the cost. I also buy all my Christmas presents online so that I can avoid the mad dash around the shops... I hate queuing.

  • Karen Larke / 15 October 2015

    We save ours by shopping with Tesco and we save our points and get the vouchers for Xmas at the moment we have over £45 which will make a lot of difference. I also buy presents throughout the year and put them in a box - I have already got all of the children's and 3 family presents (it's easier to give one large box of chocolates or biscuits to a big family). As well as 40 adults presents and my stuffed turkey joint which I bought in January (a reduced price Xmas one still in date until next January!) I buy Xmas cards and wrapping paper in January and store them in a bag. Try to get a little bit each week it can be done xxx

  • Jennie Reed / 15 October 2015

    I would think the above ideas are fairly obvious to most people. Nothing new there I'm afraid.

  • linda hymers / 14 October 2015

    My best saving tip is when you shop at Morrison's and save your points you receive your *£5 vouncher once you've saved 5000 points. This doesn't take long when feeding a family of 5 and dog. Use the vouchers to get their ssaving tamps. Save these throughout the year and it adds up! As well as getting an extra £3 once u reach *£100. Thank you Morrison's for the best deal around..
    Also even if you round up your shopping bill to the nearest pound. That extra pound stamp brought each week is still £50 ish by Xmas.
    I enjoy saving money and love different ways to save money.
    Xx

  • Julie Simmons / 14 October 2015

    In principle l can see this is a great idea. But practically for me, its a non starter. My monthly money/ wages covers bills, my tax credits £20 a wk covers weekly food bits that leaves nothing to save at all. Admittedly l have just had 6 birthdays to deal with, but even being frugal and making things I have nothing left to save.

  • Nicholas / 14 October 2015

    Thanks for reminding me.
    I find the Christmas saving cards at supermarkets or certain frozen food stores work well for me. They even pay a bonus which is great! I can even start saving really early in the year for the big event.

  • Marilyn gilmour / 14 October 2015

    All great ideas I'm going to start now and be organised and better off this X mad

  • martin ohare / 14 October 2015

    sound advice thou i would love a section on how to access shopping vouchers ,money saving tips from real customers and even a case study on how low can you go with striping back on your spending and see what figures you as a family can reach(without throwing the baby out with the bath water) when the bad old days come a knocking

  • Helen / 14 October 2015

    We do not put money aside but we do start our Christmas shopping in the summer. We get most of the family presents and just save the children's main presents to get in December ... after their letters to Father Christmas!

  • marie / 14 October 2015

    We have started getting our bottles of plonk in as they have good offers on at this time of year and they go up in December. We get a bottle a week each and a bottle of champagne between us a month till Xmas. So we have e plenty for guests and will always have something to take with us if invited anywhere. Also it won't be surprised how a big shopping bI'll cmas eve. I've also ordered my fruit and veg and arange the date it's coming. So i know the cost of that and it's already put aside. Ordering my meat on pay day. Really helps to spread it like this. And I'm doing the £20 challenge. Good look guys! ;) hope you ha en a good one..

  • Rachel nickeas / 13 October 2015

    I save £5 a week from the first Friday after Xmas £240 by beginning of December :-)

  • M. Bart / 13 October 2015

    Buy one of those sealed tin money boxes for a £1 and put your notes or spare pound coins in that. You'll think twice about dipping in as you need to use a tin opener and will need to buy a new one afterwards.

  • Lynne Redmond / 9 October 2015

    I wish I earned that much money per week.