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Saving Money While Shopping During the Holidays

Posted on November 7, 2019

The holiday season is here. Black Friday ads are already out for many stores, Christmas songs are playing on the radio and decorations are appearing in homes. That means it’s time to get started on your holiday shopping!

The average person spends around $700 on Christmas gifts every year, which for many is a lot of money. If you are looking to keep that cost down and save some money, we’ve got some useful tips for you!

Make Lists and Plans for Buying Gifts

Santa talking to a toddlerIt’s a dangerous move to go into holiday shopping completely unprepared. This could result in buying gifts last minute for full cost, missing out on good sales, and picking out mediocre presents.

Build out a list of gifts before heading to the store and make a plan. Do some early research to figure out what you want to buy, reference all of the Black Friday ads that come out early, and find where it’s cheapest to buy each item.

If you are at a store and see something nice you want to buy, take five minutes and search for it online. You might find out the store is over charging for it, sometimes even doubling the price!

Deals Don’t Always Mean Saving Money

With Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and a variety of other sales, there are tons of big deals going on. With ads like “90% off a new TV” or crazy doorbuster offers, it’s tempting to buy up everything you see.

It’s a common advertising trick that can even manipulate the most savvy of shoppers. Stores give these huge sales to make you feel like you are missing out or losing money by not taking advantage of the sale. You don’t think you are spending $100 for a new TV, but that you are going to lose $900 if you don’t buy it right away.

Don’t let yourself get pressured into buying something you aren’t planned for just because there is a good deal. You aren’t saving money at that point, you’re spending more of it.

Shop for Used Items

woman holding up a giant teddy bearDepending on what’s on your list, you might be able to get some of it for cheaper by shopping used rather than new. Especially electronics, you can save a pretty penny by shopping used.

Many retailers offer used products, especially online, for a large discount. For example, if you have a child asking for a new video game system, you can buy a used or refurbished one and save potentially around $100. Just be sure to test anything you buy used and make sure it will work and is in good condition.

Another place to consider looking for used items are thrift stores, Craigslist/Facebook marketplace, and pawn shops. Just be extra careful buying things from places like this as they often don’t have refund policies or warranties on their items.

Limit Spending Outside of Gifts

While out shopping for gifts, you’ll likely find stuff you really want. These might be items already on your personal list or something you want to buy on a whim. You could see a big sale or just feel like you deserve something nice. Try to resist the temptation and stay focused on just getting what you need for holiday shopping.

Try to limit spending to only essentials for yourself during the holiday season. This could also include limiting going out to eat, buying yourself non-essentials, and living thrifty for the season.

Open Up a ChangeForward Account

Likely, you are going to be making a lot of purchases in the coming weeks. A very useful tool to saving a little bit of money during this time is using Pioneer’s ChangeForward Savings Account. Every time you make a purchase using your debit card, we round up the purchase to the next dollar and put the change into a separate savings account.

That means the more you shop, the quicker you build up this savings account. You could even use it year round and have a nice bit of savings for next year’s holiday shopping.

Open a ChangeForward Account!

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