How to avoid overspending


It’s a problem we all have. We tell ourselves we won’t overspend over the festive season and before we know it we have maxed out the credit card and all those good intentions have gone out the window.

Here are some tips to keep you on the straight and narrow:

  1. Set budgets and stick to them. Give yourself a budget to buy gifts and limit the spend per person – and shop around until you find a gift that is in that price range.
  2. Agree on a gifting that works. If you’re planning a get-together with family and friends, get everyone to agree that gifts will be capped at a certain price and everyone must stick to it. Or write down the names of everyone attending and allocate a name of someone to buy a gift for, so instead of purchasing a separate gift for everyone, everyone only buys one gift.
  3. Get everyone to pitch in. There is no shame in asking everyone attending a lunch or dinner to contribute something – whether a food dish or a bottle of wine. Spread out amongst everyone, the cost of catering can be managed.
  4. Start early and find those bargains. The wise shopper starts Christmas shopping in July, picking out specials and buying essentials ahead of the festive season. Budgets get blown out the water when panic buying happens at the last minute. Search out the specials on gifts and especially on food items.
  5. Consider home-made gifts. Jar gifts and baked goods make fantastic presents which everyone appreciates. Buy useful odds and ends and pack them in colourful baskets.
  6. Use cash rather than credit cards. Withdraw a set amount for gifts and entertainment and stick to that amount no matter what.



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