Friday 18 September, 2020

5 Christmas shopping on a budget tips

This is what NOT to do (Internet image)

This is what NOT to do (Internet image)

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Or is it?

For Barbadians grappling with the increase in the National Social Responsibility Levy (NSRL) and the rise in gas prices, among other tax increases, a budget is absolutely critical to ensuring the months after December are not spent in financial despair. 

Loop has compiled a simple list to keep Christmas happy while being frugal. 

1) Make a list, check it twice and stick to it!

Yes Christmas is the season for giving but it is not realistic or advisable to purchase gifts for every family member, friend and coworker. Prioritize your gift list and set a strict limit for what will be spent on gifts. 

2) Look for discounted items. 

After you've made your list, walk around to find who has the best prices. Don't feel pressured to buy the first item you set your eyes on. 

3) Reuse decorations and home decor items from previous years. 

Everyone wants their home to look 'splendiferous' for the season but this can be done by reusing items from last year. So give those curtains a good washing, unravel those lights and get to sprucing up. 

4) Buy what you need not what you see. 

Yes - two hams, a turkey, four whole chickens and ten cases of drinks seems like a good idea in theory but considering the rising costs of food items, a more practical supermarket list will end better for your pockets and dwindling savings account. Consider buying only what is needed. 

5) Use cash not cards. 

Swiping a credit card is ultra convenient and saves you the hassle of walking with cash especially with the crime factor on the rise, but it is more problematic and will cost you more in the long run when the fees hit next year.

Christmas can be merry and bright, but only if shop wisely will the light and water stay on come January!

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