Well, It’s that time of year again – the time of snowfalls and rising expenses. Of course, there is so much to like about this season- the decorations, the food, the drinks and especially the gifts. But all good things come at a cost, literally. For every gift you receive, you have to give one back. Oh, the cruel rules of the holidays. Which is why, we all need to learn some money-saving tricks for Christmas. Yes, we’re talking DIY Christmas gifts and home decor.

Yes, the pandemic means that the holidays won’t be as expensive as they usually are. You can’t have those big family dinners or parties this time. But that doesn’t mean that there won’t be any additional expenses. And besides, because we all have to stay home, it’s the perfect time to get a little creative this holiday season and save some money. So without any further ado, let’s take a look at some tricks you can use to save money this Christmas.

Related: NYC Christmas Festivities That Are Still Happening This Holiday Season

One of the oldest money-saving tricks for Christmas: Budget

Yes, I know, this is one of the more obvious money-saving tricks for Christmas. But it would be next to impossible to save any money without making a budget first. Sitting down and making a budget means you will have to plan ahead of time and be more precise about what you want to buy. This way, you’re less likely to get distracted and waste money on frivolous things.

But just keep in mind that making a budget is the easy part. What’s a lot harder is actually following through with it. The holiday season, in particular, will bring with it a million alluring things that you will feel like you need to own. RESIST THE URGE. There is no point in making a budget if you’re not going to stick to it. An easy way to make sure you don’t overspend is by shopping with cash. This may be a little harder right now given the pandemic, but if possible, withdraw the amount of cash you need and spend only that.

Of course, it won’t always be feasible to use cash which is why you need to be extra careful with your credit card. You don’t want to wake up to a holiday debt hangover in January.

Get a holly jolly (Secret) Santa

You know, Secret Santa doesn’t have to just be an obligatory office tradition – you can actually bring it home! Instead of buying lots of generic gifts for everyone you know, you can put a lot of thought into buying a gift for just one person instead. Talk to your friends and family and see if they’d be interested in starting this fun Christmas tradition! You could even make your own DIY Christmas gifts!

The element of mystery in Secret Santa is actually really exciting, and you can arrange a big Zoom reveal party on Christmas morning. Decide on a budget beforehand and get to work on your (hopefully) awesome and thoughtful present. This is one of the most fun money-saving tricks for Christmas!

One of the best money-saving tricks: Avoid last-minute shopping

Last-minute shopping is the Judas of every well-planned budget. You might think that buying a few things at the last second won’t hurt your bank balance – but think again. Procrastination costs! No money-saving tricks for Christmas will work if you keep shopping till the last minute!

Make your shopping list ahead of time and start ticking off items early. This way you can guarantee that you will be able to find and buy everything on that list, and your days leading up to Christmas will be STRESS FREE. You can even spend your time working on your Christmas home decor! Hallelujah!

DIY Christmas gifts

There’s no gift as thoughtful and irreplaceable as the one that is made by hand. Homemade gifts are the greatest way to show your friends and family how much you love and care about them. Not to mention, it’s one of the greatest money-saving tricks for Christmas! Not only would your gift be completely unique, but creating a homemade gift can also be a really fun activity when pandemic-boredom strikes. Which is why DIY Christmas gifts are the best option for everyone right now.

Find out what the recipient’s hobbies, likes/dislikes are and then decide what that perfect handcrafted gift would be. Maybe it’s a card, a picture college, or their favourite meal – there really are no rules here.

Make the most of holiday sales!

One great thing about this time of year is all the different sales that you can take advantage of! From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, this is a really good time to get a great deal on your Christmas gifts. If you are running particularly late with your Christmas shopping, consider doing it on Super Saturday, which falls on 19th December, the last full Saturday before Christmas. We would suggest getting all your Christmas home decor during these sales! Honestly, this is one of the most satisfying money-saving tricks for Christmas!

Apart from these, check out your local shops and favorite online stores to see what year-end sales they have. Just be cautious with your spending – many sales are designed to encourage you to buy things you don’t really need!

Good luck out there, Roomis, and have a Merry Christmas!

D’you know what else Roomi does outside of helping its readers save money during the holiday season? With our ever-increasing lists of rooms and roommates across the world, we help you find your perfect match! Download the app here and hop on the easiest ride home, ever!