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5 Ways to Budget for the Holidays

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

Survive This Holiday Season Without Breaking the Bank

Hive Wealth | 5 Ways to Budget for the Holidays | Decorative illustration of a man and women with an airplane piggy bank

It’s officially the season of celebration, sharing in cold-weather festivities, and spending an unprecedented amount of money on gifts, plane tickets, and holiday feasts (and maybe an ugly sweater or two!).

Surviving the holidays without breaking the bank can feel impossible—but with a little planning and preparation, you can experience the season’s joy without paying later.

Here are five tips to help you stay on track over the holidays so that you don’t have to renew your New Year's resolution to watch your spending.

1. Set a budget and stick to it, no matter what.

Determine what you can safely spend without sacrificing progress toward your other goals, like saving or investing. Setting boundaries within your budget safeguards your long-term goals and gives you stress-free permission to spend money.

2. Factor in holiday expenses besides gifts.

Are you traveling for the holidays? Do you have appropriate winter wear? Did you remember to buy tickets for the ski lift that everyone gushed about in the family text message last month?

Little things like clothes, activities, that last-minute trip to the grocery store because someone forgot to buy canned pumpkin, and even extra gas use can add up during this time of year. Make sure you leave some wiggle room outside of gifts to avoid dipping into your savings.

3. Make a list and check it twice…online.

You might be out window shopping and suddenly plaster your face against a cold glass window—because that gift on display would be perfect for a special someone. But it might not be the best fit for your budget. If you enjoy shopping in person like it’s 1999, you can still take advantage of cheaper online prices by making a list. Check the in-store prices against those online, and then run with the best deal.

4. Consider the gift of time.

If you’re sweating the potential dent gift shopping would put in your wallet, consider telling friends and family that you prefer spending time with them instead of exchanging gifts—and plan something fun! Find a local park and unleash your inner child, especially if it’s snowing: make snow angels, snow people, or have a snowball fight. In lieu of a winter wonderland, plan a sleepover with an old movie, popcorn, and hot cocoa. Never underestimate how satisfying and meaningful the gift of time can be.

5. Consider making gifts.

If you’re dead set on exchanging gifts but don’t have much room in your budget, consider making them. Homemade gifts are more wallet-friendly and add a lovely personal touch. They can be as simple as pouring layers of dry cookie ingredients into a beautiful jar from a thrift store to something as complex as a homemade scrapbook to capture you and your loved one’s favorite memories.

The holidays are about celebrating what we’re thankful for and enjoying all we have—not stressing over buying gifts or purchasing the biggest turkey.

The Hive Wealth app can help you stay on track with your long-term goals, so you don’t lose sight of what’s really important. Download it for free at the App Store.


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