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Saving money over Christmas

 

Christmas is an exciting time to spend with your whānau and loved ones but it can sometimes cause the feeling of pressure to spend money beyond your means.  

When the festive season comes around, not everyone has the budget to buy gifts or take on the cost that often comes with hosting whānau during the holidays. This year, to save pūtea over Christmas it’s important to be both honest and realistic with your whānau when it comes to your financial situation.

Remember, the most memorable gift is the gift of quality time spent with loved ones – usually over home-cooked kai.

We’ve come up with a couple of thoughtful gifts that are easy on the pocket:

  • Homemade baking
  • Flowers from your garden displayed in a beautiful way
  • A framed a photo or photo album of your whānau or pets
  • A trip to the beach, hike or a whānau walk
  • IOU “vouchers” for things like a cleaning, mowing the lawns or cooking dinner

Your whānau will appreciate your honesty and the creative ways to show your love.

When trying to save money when shopping, here’s a few tips:

  • Shop at outlet stores during sales and use loyalty points
  • Cut back on unnecessary daily extras (daily coffees, takeaways, etc) in the lead up to Christmas to ensure you have additional money saved
  • Organise a set budget and plan for the gifts you are buying and try not to go overboard.
  • Get creative with your wrapping. You can use leftover fabric, craft paper or even newspaper. Use paper bags to give them another round.

A great idea is to do a Secret Santa, meaning that everyone only has to buy one gift for another person – that way, everyone gets to open something! Ensure that you set a realistic budget.

On Christmas day, try to share the load. Have every guest bring some kai, so that everyone contributes and the pressure is not placed on only one person. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to have leftovers, so don't let them go to waste either and get creative for boxing day lunch.

And if you’re traveling and staying with whānau – don’t be a hoha and don’t forget a koha!