Categorized | Advice

10 Ways to Keep Your Holiday Debt-Free

Posted on 17 October 2008

Christmas will be here soon and with it, credit card debt. Here are some ways to keep your holidays debt-free:

  • Buy prepaid gift cards. Almost every retail store and bank sells prepaid gift cards. Whether you pick up a few for shopping at specific stores or a VISA or Mastercard to be used anymore, it is an easy way to control spending.
  • Shop throughout the year. I have found many wonderful gifts, at a fraction of the cost, by keeping my eyes open while doing my regular shopping. I keep them in my basement and they are ready to give for Christmas!
  • Accumulate points through point programs and cash in for gift cards! 
  • Consider picking up a part-time job at the mall to pay for gifts. Many stores also offer discounts to seasonal workers.
  • Take online surveys for cash and gift certificates,
  • Throughout the year, save your change in a jar. Right before you start your Christmas shopping, cash it in at the bank or a CoinStar machine, which is located in most grocery stores.
  • The day after Christmas is not just for returning items, but also checking out the Christmas clearance. Last year, I bought all my cards, wrapping paper and more, 75% off!
  • Instead of cash, consider giving homemade treats or a homemade themed gift basket.
  • Keep a list throughout the year of your family and friends wish list items, their new hobbies, etc. It will make coming up with a shopping list much easier!
  • Remember, the holidays aren’t about spending money, but about being with loved ones! Plan some holiday events that don’t involve money, such as Christmas caroling, walking through your neighborhood checking out the lights, bringing a plate of cookies to the local nursing home, or working on day at a soup kitchen.
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