Money Saving

10 Ways to Plan & Budget for Holiday Shopping

July 27, 2021

According to the National Retail Federation, consumers expected to spend an average of $1,047 last holiday season. And, it was also found that 60% of people felt some form of financial pressure around the holidays.

If you get stressed about money during the holiday season, you’re not alone. That’s why it helps to start planning your 2020 holiday budget now. Not sure how to budget for holidays and holiday spending? Here are 10 helpful tips to get you started off on the right foot.

How to Budget for Holidays 2020

Holiday Shopping - Cheese

1. Start Scanning Receipts Now

If you start scanning receipts now, you could save hundreds in cashback by the time the holidays come around. With Ibotta, you can unlock rebates by completing simple tasks on the platform. Or, you can scan your product barcodes and submit your receipt for cash back, too. Within 48 hours, you’ll find the cash deposited into your account. Some other receipt scanning and cashback platforms also payout in gift cards, which make great presents for friends and co-workers!

2. Earn Cashback While Shopping Online

We’ve reviewed the 10 best cashback apps for summer 2020, and they’re all great tools to use now to begin budgeting for the holidays. When you sign up for Dosh, for example, you can earn 10% cashback automatically on every purchase. With Rakuten, you can earn up to 40% back at over 2,500 different stores, making the app one of the most far-reaching in terms of savings opportunities.

3. Buy Last Year’s Electronics

Want to know the best tip for how to budget for the holidays? Don’t buy new models of anything, especially electronics. If you’re interested in getting your child a new laptop for school, for example, you don’t have to get them the new 2020 Dell notebook or MacBook Pro. Instead, opt for a new version of an older model. You’ll save hundreds and the gift will still be just as memorable and functional.

4. Download a Budgeting App

Not sure how to budget for the holidays? Download a budgeting app that can help you! Mint allows you to focus on spending less in certain categories while saving more in others whereas an app like YNAB follows the zero-based budgeting system where you plan for every dollar that you earn. Regardless of which one you choose to use, it helps to see where your money is going so that you can cut back on expenses and allocate more towards savings before the holidays come around.

5. Start a Side Hustle

With the recent increase in interest in food delivery, most delivery apps are still looking for drivers. And, drivers for companies like Uber Eats or Postmates can make up to $12 per hour after taxes. That’s not bad for a side hustle. And, it’s not the only option for a side hustle! Walk dogs, manage social media accounts, or teach private guitar lessons on the side.

6. Sign Up for Automatic Savings Transfers

Depending on who you bank with, you might be able to sign up for automatic savings transfers. Banks like Bank of America will allow you to schedule transfers each month or even every week. If you have trouble saving for big gifts around the holidays, this is a great option as it allows you to save small amounts over a longer period of time.

7. Holiday Shop in Your Home

The best place to shop for cheap holiday gifts? Your own home! Raid your closet to see if you have any clothes with the tags still on that you think a friend might love. Or, raid your desk or attic to see if you can save money on wrapping paper and decorations by using leftover decorations and wrapping materials from holidays past.

8. Take Advantage of Black Friday

Studies show that the best time to purchase holiday gifts is between October 1st and December 1st, and Black Friday and Cyber Monday are included in this. Take advantage of Black Friday deals for bigger ticket items such as electronics, gadgets, and other expensive gifts. Cyber Monday is great for Amazon purchases, travel deals, and clothing.

9. Suggest Secret Santa

If you’re trying to budget for the holidays but are having trouble this year, suggest that your friends and family participate in Secret Santa. Not only is it a great way to alleviate the financial and emotional stress of having to buy a gift for everybody, but it allows you to devote your energy to finding the perfect gift for one person (and vice versa).

10. Sign Up for Cheese

Signing up now for a Cheese Debit Card is one of the best ways to begin saving for the 2020 holiday season. Not only are you able to enjoy up to 3% in saving bonuses for having friends and family sign up, but you can enjoy up to 10% cashback when you shop with one of our partners. This means 10% cashback for deals, gifts and gift cards purchased at Best Buy, Amazon, Hulu, Chewy, Sephora, and more!

Sign up today to join us and you’ll be on your way to holiday savings in no time.