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Little known ways on how to have a frugal Christmas.

Looking to save money during the holidays? Here are the best tips that you can do to celebrate a frugal Christmas and still have a memorable time.

Yes, I know. “Frugal” is not a word one would typically associate with Christmas time.

So many presents to buy and parties to attend make it almost impossible to think about saving money during the Holidays. Most of us spend more than $1000 on holiday expenses.

But believe it or not, you can enjoy the holidays without losing your savings for the entire year.

But, how? 

Today, you will learn frugal Christmas ideas that will help you enjoy an inexpensive Christmas and make it memorable.

Have A Frugal Christmas Budget

When it comes to finances, frugal or expensive might have different meanings depending on each person’s financial situation.

So, the first thing you will need to do when planning your frugal Christmas is to budget how much money you are willing to spend, on what, and which are the priorities. 

The earlier you start planning your Christmas budget, the better!

Time will allow you to, for example, buy gifts for the people you love like Christmas gifts for Aunt and Uncle  at lower prices during the earliest times of the year. It will also give you enough time to look for alternatives in case one of these presents is out of your Christmas budget. 

Next step is… sticking to your budget! 

How To Stick To Your Frugal Christmas Budget

1) Frugal Christmas Decorating Ideas

I also want my house to look beautiful during Christmas time, but this usually means spending tons of money on lightings, Christmas tree, dancing Santa, etc.

What if I told you this does not always have to be the case?  Here is what you can try: 

Secondhand decoration items.

There are many places where you can get this, especially a couple of weeks before Christmas time, but you can also search online (Facebook Marketplace is a great place for these items).  

Recycle some of the items you had from previous years.

Yes, go to your basement and start searching on those boxes. You will surely find something you can recycle for this Christmas! 

Crafts (there are so many beautiful “DIY” ideas online!).

Even if you are not too creative, there are so many beautiful options. If you have children, they would probably love to be part of this too. It will help you have a beautifully decorated house, happy children, and a new family tradition. Everyone wins! 

Exchange with friends/family members.

Someone has what you need and you probably have what someone else is needing. Find that someone and start exchanging!  

Catch special discounts online.

There are so many different stores and options online that it would be impossible not to find a good offer. One of my favorite brick and mortar go-to store is Dollar Tree.

Use the cash back tool Rakuten to get the most of your online purchase.

2) Frugal Christmas Recipe

Oooh, the food… probably one of our favorite things about Christmas, which can sometimes turn into a pain when we are trying to not overspend.

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    Let’s face it, it is just too difficult when you go out and find all this delicious Christmas food absolutely everywhere.

    Although trying to beat temptation can be an effective strategy, there is no reason to not enjoy some of this delicious Christmas food and still having a frugal Christmas.

    Some ideas for this are: 

    • Find alternative ingredients. 
    • Prepare smaller portions (we tend to overeat at Christmas, so smaller portions can be a great way to keep both your wallet and your weight safe!). 
    • Evaluate the alternatives. Delicious chocolate chip cookies might be more cost-effective than a tart, especially if you are inviting people over. 
    • Use the ingredients you already have. Sometimes we already have ingredients that can easily fit into your Christmas recipe, take a deep look into your fridge before buying anything else. 
    • Plan your meals. Yes, same as you plan your budget. Think in advance which will be your preferred recipes for this Christmas, budget them and stick to it!

    3) Frugal Christmas Dinner

    Christmas dinner is probably one of the most beautiful times of the year. All the family around the table, enjoying a beautiful evening, laughing, eating, and having the time of their lives.

    Unfortunately, this beautiful moment often comes with a very high price. But it does not have to be the case! 

    Split The bill

    Especially if it is a big family, try to reach an agreement in which all members get to financially collaborate in setting this up. 

    Everyone Brings Something.

    This can also be a great family tradition. Why not share something more than beautiful moments? This year, everyone can bring their own personal recipe, next year you can switch. Delegating is the key! 

    No Leftovers.

    Leftovers on Christmas and New Year’s Eve has become a Christmas tradition itself. However, when you are looking to save some money, it might be best to calculate portions the best you can!

    Use Coupons.

    Come on, coupons are everywhere since November for a reason. Try to get as many as you can and use them wisely and towards the most expensive items. 

    Use an app like Ibotta to help you save money on your groceries.

    Chase Main Dish Offers.

    I can assure you will find good and delicious options for a reasonable price. Skip the high-end meat and opt for more budget-friendly meat like ham, ham steaks, or a turkey breast.

    4) Frugal Christmas Shopping

    Shopping is one of those activities that you can enjoy from January until November, before it comes so terribly stressful… and expensive. But there are alternatives: 

    Buy Online

    There is nothing you can’t find online.  You have access to different prices and items at only one click away and the best part is no lines or crowds! 

    Use Rakuten to get cash backs on your purchases.

    Set Priorities

    How many times have you bought stuff during Christmas that you just never use? This is part of the Christmas excitement, but do not fall into it. Make a list of the items you need /want and budget them. 

    Buy Gift Cards… with Discounts.

    Yes, believe it or not, there are many places selling discounted gift cards online. One of my favorites is Raise. Again, only one click away! 

    Sale Days

    Yes, I know this means crowds everywhere, but being able to save money makes it worthwhile. 

    No Window Shopping

    Avoiding temptation is probably the best – and the smartest – way to not overspend during Christmas. 

    5) Frugal Gift Ideas

    Gifts are both a blessing and a nightmare. It is the time of the year in which you want to give amazing gifts to make your family and friends happy.

    However, if you are on a tight budget, it might become a very difficult mission.

    Here is what you can do: 

    Buy in bulk.

    There are so many gifts that can be sorted by doing this. If you do not mind about them being a bit too impersonal, then this is a great choice. It will save you money and time trying to find dozens of different gifts. 

    Do it yourself.

    Depending on the situation – and the person – there are things you can DO that would make a great gift. For example, Christmas cookies! 

    Experiences instead of stuff.

    What about inviting your friends over for dinner and have a nice time instead of buying them stuff that they might not even need! 

    Gifts per household instead of gifts for each family member

    Consider gifting items that come in a family set like this one.. By doing this, will save time and money. 

    Gifts for the kids only.

    Christmas gifts are probably most important to them anyway. So try to suggest this and you might be surprised at how many people will support this idea. 

    Final Thoughts On Being Frugal At Christmas

    Christmas time is the most wonderful time of the year, but can also be the most expensive time. However, with the right mindset and ideas in mind, you can still have a frugal and enjoyable Christmas time.

    Do the frugal Christmas ideas and grab this holiday planner to help you plan out your holiday frugally!

    Frugal Related Articles:

    Here are the best frugal tips that you can do to celebrate Christmas so that you will not be in debt after the holidays.

    25+ Frugal Christmas Ideas That Will Make Your Christmas Memorable