Is managing money during the holiday season going to be a problem for you? These tips will ensure that you have a stress-free and enjoyable festive season.

Here's how to manage money during the festive season

With shops dressed up likes brides and online stores offering irresistible offers during the festive season, holding on to your hard-earned money can be a difficult task. And if you are anything like Rebecca Bloomwood from Confessions of a Shopaholic, our sympathies are with you. 

While it may seem tough to not give in to all the shopping urges, here are some simple, yet effective tips that will help you handle your money like a pro while partaking in the festivities. 

Make a gift list

It’s that time of the year when friends and family shower each other with love. Gift-giving is a long-standing tradition during the holiday season. Create a gift list for your loved ones. If you are on a tight budget, prioritise the people you really want to give gifts to. 

Set a budget

Setting and sticking to a budget will make or break your money management plan. It is important to create a budget you can afford and then stick with it. Start saving up a couple of months before the holiday season starts. Buy gifts via cash or debit card. Steer away from swiping your credit cards if you do not trust yourself with them.

Related: A woman’s guide to managing her finances at every stage of life 

Collect gifts through the year

An easy way to lessen the burden during the festive season is to collect gifts throughout the year. Pick up things you think your loved ones will appreciate when you come across them. It could be during your travels or a random run to the nearest mall.

Repurpose decorations

Do you really need to buy new lights, lanterns or home décor items every year? Open up your decorations box and see what still works and can be reused. Spend on things you absolutely must. You can even make DIY decorations by turning it into a fun project with your kids and add that personal touch to the house.

Re-gift or DIY

Re-gifting is a perfectly acceptable practice. It is not necessary to go out and buy gifts for everyone in advance. During the festive season, there will be many gifts that will come your way. From sweets to chocolates to dry fruits to crockery, wait for these gifts to arrive and then pass it on. You can save yourself from devouring many unwanted calories! Alternatively, you can make cute DIY gifts as well.

Cut down on gifting

It is entirely okay to reduce the number of people on your gift-giving list. If you feel obligated to give a gift to someone in order to reciprocate the gesture, you can always, find a sweet way of saying that you would like to spend time with them rather gifting presents to each other. Plan a dinner instead.

Related: How I learnt about money management from my parents

Cook, don't order

In today’s world, where you can order everything you could possibly need on apps, take the time out to cook something. Home-made ladoos will be appreciated a lot more than store-bough chocolates or cake. The effort that you put in will go a long way in impressing your friends and family. Additionally, it will also help you save big bucks.

Create inexpensive traditions

Start inexpensive traditions that you can look forward to each year. It could be camping with your kids, a pot luck dinner and cards night with friends or a collection drive for a charity close to your heart. These practices can also be a great opportunity to pay it forward and make the festive season brighter for the less privileged.

The holiday season is the most beautiful time of the year. It is the time to celebrate, be thankful for the blessings of the year and spread the cheer. Have a look at these money ratios that can help you manage your finances better during the holiday season. Following these simple steps can ensure the holidays don't become stressful or bog you down. Play it smart, relax and have a great time. Happy Holidays!

How I did it

Praveen Nair

Ever since I retired, I have looked forward to the festive season with added zeal. It is the buzz that I need once in a year in my laidback post-retirement life. I like to celebrate the occasion, get the house painted or renovated, buy gifts for my dear ones or go on a vacation. These things… Read more

Swati Mehra

A couple of years ago I was over the moon after landing my first job. I celebrated regally during the festive season that ensued, only to land in a financial soup for the next few months. With gargantuan credit card bills and barely any cash left, I had no other option but to default the payment… Read more

Rohansh Pathak

It is highly unlikely that all the expenses made during the festive season were worth making in the first place. This is the time of the year when unavoidable expenses are bound to upset your budget plans, and you can do little about it. However, I have made it a point to have a look at the… Read more

Rahila Khan

I am a single mother of one. I lost my husband just 5 years into my marriage. Life has been a struggle for me, but I have managed it and today I have no complaints. 

I was a young widow with a 3 year old son when my husband passed away due to a heart attack. My parents were my rock… Read more