The Guide for Surviving the Holiday Season on a Budget

The Guide for Surviving Holiday Season on a Budget and Improving One’s Income by Isabel F. William

We all know what the holiday season means – perfect gifts for our loved ones, enchanting Christmas decorations that will give our homes a magical, wintery appeal and lovely dinner parties imbued with festivity. Overwhelmed by the spirit of Christmas, we easily get carried away with our spending and end up almost completely broke by the end of the season. If this sounds familiar, don’t panic! In just a few easy steps, you can limit your expenses and even boost your income.

Managing your money

First things first, you need to get on top of your expenditure and prevent yourself from spending more than you have. This means slashing your expenses and budgeting for Christmas shopping. It may be difficult to resist all those Christmassy decorations and other items, but it’s possible. Here’s how you can get it done.

  • Define your holiday budget

It all starts with a well-defined budget that will get you through the holiday season. This is the crucial step in your money management for Christmas because it will enable you to limit your expenses. Start by projecting how much you will earn during the holidays. If you have a regular job with a steady income, this won’t be a problem, but if you’re a freelancer try to come up with an approximate amount. Afterwards, you should make a list of your basic expenses, such as the rent, utilities, gas and groceries, that don’t fall into your holiday spending category. Once you’ve covered them, you can allocate an amount of money for your Christmas budget that you’ll stick to no matter what.


  • Make a list of your holiday expenses

Having defined your Christmas budget, you should list your holiday expenses, such as gifts, decorations, parties and anything else you can think of. This will enable you to see how much money you will approximately need and whether this fits your holiday budget. Remember, it’s of the utmost importance that you limit your expenses according to your budget. Try to evaluate how much money you’ll need for gifts, parties, decorations, etc.

  • Make a list of gifts

Giving gifts is every family’s tradition and we all want to see our loved ones smile when we give them the perfect presents. However, we can sometimes get carried away and purchase gifts that are too expensive or even spend too much money on presents for people we don’t know that well. Thus, you should make a list of people you want to shop for and see whether all of them should make your list. You should also calculate how much money you can spend on each person. Once again, stick to your budget!

  • Compare prices

Before going shopping, you should take time to compare prices in different stores. Not only can you find lower prices, but you may also come across possible discounts and save a lot of money. You should browse the Internet for possible bargains, compare prices and consider buying some presents online. If you’re not into online shopping, you should visit several stores before finally buying gifts. When it comes to Christmas groceries, keep your eyes peeled for different bargains, such as two for one deals.

Boosting your income

If you’re really on a tight budget and you simply can’t make it work, you should consider boosting your income by taking up a side job. Depending on how much free time you have, you can find different job opportunities. Here are several possible side jobs that can help you earn more money during the holiday season.

  • Web designer

If you have some experience with graphic design, you should consider finding a part-time or freelance job as a web designer. You will be in charge of designing, managing and updating websites for a fee of up to $32 per hour.

  • Freelance writer/editor

Working as a freelance writer or editor is a great opportunity for someone with excellent writing skills. You can earn up to $17 an hour as a copywriter or editor and take up projects from different fields. This job entails writing or editing materials for social media, websites, blogs, etc.

  • Online surveys

If you don’t have a lot of free time, you should consider taking online surveys. By answering paid surveys online, you’ll be able to boost your income or even win different awards. This is a simple solution for a person who already has a full-time job or simply doesn’t have a lot of free time for more time-consuming projects.

  • Dog walker/sitter

Anyone who loves dogs will be delighted with this job. You can earn money by spending time with these lovely creatures instead of dealing with demanding clients. You can ask your friends and neighbors whether they need help with their pets or know someone who does. You can also join a doggy daycare if there’s one in your area.

The holiday seasons is the spending season that can leave you barely making ends meet. However, by properly managing your money and taking up a side job to boost your income, you will be able to spend your holidays in prosperity.



Isabel F. William Consultant and lover of literature and philosophy. She believes that sometimes it is just enough to enjoy a really good book, smooth jazz and a cup of coffee to travel somewhere else.





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