Holiday Shopping and Money

December 9, 2011

By Katie Savant, Government Relations Deputy Director, National Military Family Association


holiday treeWhen families think about holiday shopping, a budget may go out the window. Take some time to do a bit of pre-planning before you venture out to the mall, or you may be left with retail regret! Here are some tips to help keep you on track.

  • Create a budget and stick to it. Sit down with your family and discuss your holiday festivities and gift giving wishes. Try using a holiday checklist, such as a free online template, to help you track your expenditures.
  • Plan for holiday parties. Is there a gift exchange? Will you bring a dish to share? Think ahead of time about costs associated with holiday parties and include these in your budget.
  • Watch for hidden costs. Do you need to ship gifts? Are you mailing holiday cards? Will you purchase household decorations or wrapping supplies? Will you make any special meals?
  • Little gifts add up. Many people like to remember co-workers, teachers, service personnel, and others during their end-of-year gift giving. Handwritten thank you notes and homemade gifts are appreciated. Don't feel pressured to buy gifts you cannot afford.

Related Articles:

More Consumers Feeling Worse About Their Finances
Don't Increase Debt During the Holidays
Keeping Track of What you Spend and Budgeting
The Hardest Part About Getting Our of Debt

Take the Pledge

I pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time. I will encourage my family and friends to do the same

Take the America Saves Pledge

Blogger Resources

We are always looking for guest bloggers to share their savings tips and advice with our readers. 

Review Submission Guidelines

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Annie Cromwell | March 5, 2014

    Wondering how to enter @SaveYourRefund for your chance at $25,000 or the weekly $100? Easy-peasy! http://ow.ly/qDqzW 

Saver Stories View all »

Starting and Continuing a Personal Finance Journey

Written by Sara Cooper | December 23, 2013

When Kiara Hardin, now a junior at Western Illinois University, became an intern with the Chicago Summer Business Institute during her sophomore year of high school, she began her personal finance journey. The program required participants to open a savings account.

Read more...

Another Dream Realized

Written by Tammy Greynolds | November 7, 2014

Mary Brown was already a disciplined individual when she came to Wisconsin Saves coordinator Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation (WWBIC) in last summer. She had successfully completed her bachelor’s degree with the assistance of her husband and son, and was now ready to tackle her next big dream – homeownership.

Read more...

Taking Steps toward Financial Fitness

Written by Tammy Greynolds | November 7, 2014

Nicky Vasquez learned about Virginia Saves when she attended her first class with Bank On Virginia Beach. The instructor shared how important it was to have a written savings goal, and the entire class joined Virginia Saves as the first step toward financial fitness.

Read more...

Receive Updates

Sign up for Texts

Written by Tammy Greynolds | July 15, 2014

Read more...

Sign up for Emails

Written by Super User | September 16, 2013

Get Emails

Take the Pledge

Written by Super User | September 16, 2013

Start Saving