With the economy in the state that it is, no one seems to have the money they used to. But if you still want to spoil your family and friends with lavish gifts this holiday season, you may be wondering how to scrape together cash for the holidays. You may need to get a little creative, but it is always possible to make (or find) a few extra dollars to contribute to your holiday spending. Consider these tips when you're looking to discover how to scrape together cash for this holiday season.
- Shorten Santa's list. If you've got less people to buy for, then you've technically got more money to go around. Decide who on your list can go without a gift this year. Talk to family and friends about not gifting this year and doing something together instead. Most people will be happy with the suggestion.
- Get creative with your gifts. You don't necessarily need to buy something for everyone on your list. Consider baking a few holiday gifts. Kinds make cute hand-painted ornaments that any grandparent would be happy to have, and both are inexpensive to make. Consider "I will do's" for a friend or relative that likes to take advantage of your skills and talents. Your free time may be a great gift replacement that they will no longer have to feel guilty about asking for.
- Cash in your points. It is more than likely that you have accrued hundreds of dollars worth of store points throughout the year. Now is the time to cash them in. You can usually get gift cards for many different stores, and you can spend these instead of your own cash. It'd be kind of like shopping for holiday gifts for free!
- Cut back on your variable expenses. Anything that you get to choose how much you spend on is called variable expenses. This includes things like trips to restaurants, your cable bill, and haircuts. If you can cut back on these expenditures in the months leading up to the holidays, you'll easily have a few hundred more dollars in your pocket.
- Use coupons. As much of a hassle as it may seem to grab your scissors and cut something from the flyer, you have to look at coupons in a new light. Think about it this way: you can hand them a coupon instead of your own money. Who wouldn't want to do this? Take the time and shop the sales. You'll be surprised at how much money will stay in your wallet.
- Put off gift-buying. Often, family gatherings happen after the holidays. If this is the case, you may be able to take advantage of post-holiday sales, where you can purchase things for a fraction of their original price. No one will know when you bought it!
Not everyone has time to find a second job, especially around the holidays. But if you're looking to find out how to scrape together cash for the holidays, then all it requires is a little creative thinking. More than likely, your family will be grateful for whatever you give them for the holidays. You'll just sleep a lot better knowing that you were able to get through this holiday season without maxing out your credit cards to do so.