5 ways to save money at Christmas

Created By: Joe Gorman Joe Gorman

Christmas time can be fun, relaxing, exhausting, delicious, indulgent, present-y, busy… and expensive. Like, really expensive. Here are some ways to take it easy on the old piggy bank while still having a top notch break.

image saying 'dolla bills'
You can enjoy a whole day with a good book and not spend a single cent.

1. Host a House Party 

The cost of going out and partying is probably the biggest drain on your finances. You’ve got to pay for drinks, dinner, entry fees and often a taxi home, and before you know it you’ve blown your budget. Host your own party at home or at a mate’s place (even better because then you can avoid cleaning). Invite whoever you want over, and you can go as wild as you like in the comfort of a lounge room. BYO drinks and food, no entry fee - partying at home is way more fun and most importantly, it’s cheap! 

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2. Read a Book 

If the real world sometimes seems a little overwhelming, books are a great way to escape to a new world. The best part is, you can enjoy a whole day with a good book and not spend a single cent. Stay at home, or go to the park, put your feet up and relax. If, like me, you usually read non-fiction, try fiction to get your imagination going. Here’s a list of top aussie books from 2014. 

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3. Make Your Own Presents

Sometimes Christmas can seem like a burden rather than a holiday... Do you hate having to spend inordinate amounts of money finding the most ‘original’ present? Try making your own instead, or find something recycled to save money. The best present I ever got was from a garage sale - it was an ornate mirror that my mum found for a few bucks. If you aren’t lucky enough to find that special bargain, make something yourself! If you fancy yourself as a cook, you could dedicate a day to baking and creating your friends’ and family's favourite dishes. Better still, make your own card to go along with it - trust me, parents will treasure a handmade card much more than one bought from the store. 

image of origami nazgul

4. Go On a Local Holiday

In Australia, it seems like everyone wants to go overseas over the Christmas holidays. But for many young people, part time work and a lack of money prevents such a luxury. No matter, Australia is a vast continent with many, many interesting places to visit. If you can get hold of a car, or even simply catch a train or a plane, you can set off to places near the beach, or go camping, or visit friends from another city. It might not be a white Christmas, but Australia has some of the best summer weather to enjoy. Can’t afford to even leave your town? Go stay with a mate for a few days and have a “stay-cation”. 

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5. Reconnect with Loved Ones 

When the sun is shining and the weather is good, there is a temptation to want to go out all the time. The holidays are a great time to socialise and try new things, but sometimes those things can be very expensive. One way of making things more cost-effective is to spend some time with your family at home. Often we neglect spending time with loved ones in the rush of work, uni or socialising, but the holiday season is a great time to catch up with your little brother or sister, with your parents, or with old friends.

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What can I do now?

Last reviewed: 26 October, 2015
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