In partnership with the Financial Services National College (FSNC).
Thanks to Covid-19, Christmas may look different for many of us this year.
And as much as we love mince pies and Michael Bublé’s festive album, the end of the year can be both stressful and expensive - especially for those experiencing financial hardship.
With that said, we've pulled together a few pointers to help lessen the festive burden:
Four tips to help manage your Christmas spending:
Don’t leave your shopping until the last minute
Avoid becoming a last-minute shopper and keep an eye out for mid-season sales in October. You can get all sorts of items for less than you would normally pay, with some retailers offering discounts during the weeks leading up to the big day.
If you have the nerve, don’t forget Black Friday and Cyber Monday can (but not always) offer huge discounts on a variety of items.
Flog your stuff
As the saying goes “One man's trash is another man's treasure”; from unwanted kitchen appliances to books and fitness equipment.
Sort through your clutter and sell what you can. Here are a handful of popular online sites to get you started:
- eBay: if (and when) your listed item sells, you pay eBay a 10% fee of the final sale price, including postage. This applies to every item, including those listed for free.
- Gumtree: great for selling bulky items such as second-hand furniture, Gumtree is free to use unless you select specific services
- Depop: part-eBay, part-Instagram, Depop is commonly used to sell clothing and takes a 10% cut on the total transaction amount, including shipping
- Facebook Marketplace: unlike other marketplaces, Facebook Marketplace does not charge any fees and you can post as many items as you want
- Amazon Marketplace: perfect for CDs, DVDs and books, fees are fixed per-item at the rate of 0.75p for UK sellers and free accounts let you post a total of 35 items each month
Consider making gifts from scratch
Inspired by the likes of the Great British Bake Off and the Great British Sewing Bee creative hobbies are currently going through a renaissance. From a batch of Christmas macarons to home-made luxury soaps, you can put your own spin on a homemade gift and cut the price.
Use voucher codes, loyalty points and cashback sites
If you’re worried about this year’s gift budget, take stock of any unspent vouchers and loyalty card points such as Sainsbury’s Nectar card, Boots Advantage and Tesco Clubcard.
You can also get paid to shop (yes really!) by earning cashback from your online purchases. Using a cashback website such as Quidco and TopCashBack is easy; simply, create an account and use the site to access online retailers. When you purchase an item, you will receive a percentage of the value of your shopping as cashback which is paid into your account.
And of course, when you have built up your kitty, be sure to keep it safe in your savings account!
If you have any questions about our savings accounts or would like to open one with us, pop in to your local branch or contact us by using our online form and one of our qualified savings advisers will be in touch.
A full list of our savings accounts can be found here.