Holiday Survival Guide, Part 1:
Deciding What You Need to Make the Holidays Successful
The holidays are a time of joy where you should be celebrating with friends and family. Unfortunately, with the average Canadian family spending close to $1,400 each year to celebrate, the holidays can also bring a significant amount of stress and financial strain to your life. In order to get through the holidays successfully, you need to have a clear plan for your holiday spending each year.
Don’t let concerns about money and fear of debt put a damper on your holiday plans. Read this handy Holiday Survival Guide and download the PDF to help you get through the holidays successfully. If you are still concerned or need to address current issues with debt before the holidays, call Consolidated Credit at 1-888-287-8506 to speak with a trained credit counsellor. You can also take the first step online by completing a request for a Free Debt Analysis.
Step 1: Decide What You Need to Make the Holidays a Success
Your first step in creating an effective holiday plan that helps keep your spending down, and helps you avoid depending on credit, is to determine exactly what you need and what will be involved in making your family’s holiday season special this year. Answering the following questions can help you get a complete picture of what your holiday spending plan needs to cover.
Gifts: Who are you buying gifts for this year and what do you want to give each person?
Travel: Will you be travelling anywhere during the holiday season?
Decorations: Are you buying any new decorations for this holiday season?
Meals: What kind of holiday meals will you be cooking and hosting this year?
Guests: Will any friends or family be staying with you over the holidays?
Holiday Shipping: How much money will you need for shipping this season?
An Important Note to Start Your Holiday Planning Early
More and more, smart shoppers are getting ahead of winter holiday costs by starting their shopping as early as possible. While in the past Black Friday used to be the start of the holiday shopping season, recent studies show about four out of ten Canadians (41%) now start their holiday shopping by the beginning of November. This allows consumers to spread out the expense of the holidays over several months, while using Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales to their best advantage.
A Smart Holiday Shopping Strategy from Consolidated Credit:
You can take the following steps to help maximize your holiday savings and minimize holiday stress. With this strategy, you should start your holiday shopping no later than early November:
- Read this Holiday Survival Guide in-full to help you create an accurate and effective holiday spending plan; you should develop this plan as early as possible in the year.
- Once your plan is ready, you should go online and use a free price comparison tool to determine where you can get the best price for each of the items on your shopping list.
- Compare advertised prices now to any Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale prices you find; many retailers start advertising or at least announce these sales online starting in October.
- If there is not a significant difference between the prices offered now and the Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale prices, you should purchase those items now instead of leaving them for the biggest shopping days of the year.
- Save your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping for real bargains that you find – especially on big-ticket purchases.
- By the end of Cyber Monday, you should be done or close to done with all of your holiday shopping. This will help you get more enjoyment out of the holiday season throughout December, because you won’t have to worry about getting everything done.
To continue making an effective plan in keeping your holiday costs down, please go to Step 2: Developing an Effective Holiday Spending Plan. If you have questions or need help, call Consolidated Credit at 1-888-287-8506 to speak with a trained credit counsellor.
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