As I’ve discussed in the past, stress runs rampant around the holidays. Our expectations are stretched high, and our finances are stretched higher. It’s common to spend so much money during the holidays that we pay it off all year, just to do it again. Setting a holiday budget is definitely one way to keep your money in check during this season, but what about when it comes time to meet that budget? Luckily, I’ve inherited a frugal gene (thanks mom!) that helps me with buying things at a pretty good discount, so I’ve come up with 5 money saving holiday hacks to help you find the same deals!
5 Money Saving Holiday Hacks
- Take advantage of the sales – I love getting the emails from Brad’s Deals. They’re sent year-round, but you can score some awesome deals with it. The newsletter links to many different stores with coupon codes, free shipping, and anything else you can think of. Plus, they go above and beyond with Black Friday deals, so you know exactly where the sales are the weekend after Thanksgiving.
- Use Ebates – Y’all, Ebates is my favorite. With all of my online shopping, I just go through their site first. The price stays the same for me, but I get a percentage of cash back with my purchase. Sign up here if you don’t have an account, it’s free and it’s so worth it. I’ve had it for 4 years and saved over $500 just from buying things online wherever I’d normally shop.
- Always check Retailmenot.com – There are tons of coupon sites out there, but this one is my favorite. It’s always super reliable so you’re not trying dozens of different coupon codes just to find out they’re expired. I even use it when we order pizza! I don’t buy anything without checking this site for coupons first.
- Sign up for store e-newsletters for extra coupons – This one can be a pain if you hate getting ads in your email, but many stores will offer 10% off your first purchase if you sign up. Save yourself some money, and unsubscribe when you’re done if they start bugging you. A lot of times, I keep the newsletters because I like seeing the new things that come out. Also, if you’re buying something big at Lowe’s (or somewhere similar), you can find 10% off coupons on eBay for a few dollars. Paying $3 for a coupon to save $30 has proven to be worth it to me!
- Buy used gift cards – This one is best used when you’re planning ahead, because some stores only offer physical gift cards that you’ll have to have mailed to you. Basically, people get gift cards, and they use part of it but don’t want to use the rest (or they’d rather have cash). They sell the gift card to these sites, and the sites sell them to you for a discount. Obviously, you need to find reputable sites so you don’t get ripped off. Gift Card Granny has been awesome to use, and I have saved quite a bit of money on big ticket items just from paying with used gift cards. It’s not really worth the hassle with smaller orders.
I find shopping therapeutic, but it really causes more stress in the long run. Taking advantage of these shopping hacks have really helped me save money over the years, and allows me to get my shopping bug out of my system when I need to. Also, when I’m not overspending, I’m also not overstressing about it. Because the stress halts the healing, and the healing is what I need.
What are your favorite ways to save money when you’re shopping?