The holiday season puts people in a shopping and giving mood but it is filled with temptations.
There are deals that seem too good to pass up and parties and payments that creep up.
1. For starters, create a gifting plan
If you have a big family, maybe do Secret Santa or make a deal you only get the kids gifts. If you're buying for a teacher, go in with other parents to cut costs.
2. Know the cost/deals
If you have an eye on a certain TV or laptop, price shop it now so that when Black Friday rolls around you know if you're getting the lowest price.
3. Set up alerts to ding your phone with price drops
Apps like Shop Savvy let you scan an item's barcode. Then it monitors the price from several stores and tells you when there's been a drop in price.
4. Start shopping now
It's good to spread out spending, that way you don't load up all the shopping in one chunk on your credit card or drain your savings and really feel that strain in December.
5. Avoid last-minute fees
The best way to avoid extra fees, especially for overnight or rush shipping, is to send gifts early. Just slap a don't open until December 25 sticker on it!
6. Buy discount gift cards
These can take a week or two to come in the mail but you can save up to 25 percent when you buy someone's unwanted gift card for less than the card's worth.
7. Book your travels now
If you are traveling over the mountain and through the woods, the cost to get to grandma's house is going up as airfares are getting more expensive every day. Don't delay your booking!
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