December 5, 2019 5 Tips for Handling Holiday Spending Wisely
Central Federal believes that the season of giving is a time of great joy. However, we know that money can make things stressful, especially when it comes to purchasing gifts, filling up on gasoline, or paying for extra baggage at the airport when you least expect it. If you’re thinking how anyone is supposed to manage all of this, then you’re in the right place. Here are 5 tips for handling holiday spending wisely.
Build a Budget
In order to avoid as much stress as possible, build yourself a budget. It’s never too early or too late when it comes to planning your expenses. Start by viewing your monthly income and compare it to the bills and loans that you are required to pay. Then find out what else you are spending over a 30-day period. Subtracting your monthly payments from your monthly income will give you an idea of what amount you are currently able to save. Now you can attempt to allocate funds so that you spend less over time.
Plan Your Purchases
After understanding what your own personal finances look like, you can add potential future purchases into that equation. In Missouri, the average price of gasoline per gallon is $2.25, according to AAA. Depending on where you’re heading, you can now determine what gas will cost you for the entire trip. If flying, check to see what the airline charges for an extra bag. This information is available to you, but only by planning ahead. When looking to buy gifts for family or friends, determine what you can afford to spend on each of them. This will help you avoid getting caught up on cost when browsing at the store.
Shop Around Online
With the Internet today, there are many options right at the tips of our fingers. That means there’s always a better deal to be found. Travel sites like Trip Advisor can help you find flights, hotels, and other items including their prices. Shopping around online will also allow you to find a sale without the hassle of dealing with crowds or pushy salespeople.
Make It a Gift Exchange
Rob Your Neighbor, White Elephant, Hot Gift Potato, or whatever you want to call it – gift exchanges are perfect for this time of the year. The rules can be simple, where each person is expected to bring one large gift or several small gifts. Next, everyone draws a number to determine the order in which they pick a present. To make it a little more interesting, take turns rolling dice or flipping a coin before grabbing a gift. Do the math beforehand and set a maximum amount of items people can take so as to not leave anyone out.
Stash Away Receipts
Receipts are one of the best ways to track your spending throughout the holidays. Always double check the totals and keep them all in one safe location. There’s a chance that you might be able to return a gift or two as well.
While Central Federal will be closed for the holidays, we’re here to help you with your finances almost every other day of the week. Stop by our location at 210 W 10th St. or give us a call at (573) 364-1024.