Money Tips for the Holiday Season

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The most stressful things for me about the holiday season are those last-minute expenses. Every year I think I have my holiday spending under control, but then a friend shows up with a present I hadn't accounted for, and I feel obligated to reciprocate. Or I realize I forgot I'm supposed to bring wine to four different parties. Or I forget to budget in the cost of boarding the cat to deck the halls with my parents. Or. Or. Or.

While I already knew many of the tips Andrea gives, she had some surprising new ones, too. She writes:

Before you head out to do your shopping, know what the hard numbers look like, and map out in advance what sort of cash reserve you’ll have to dip into. A great way to keep yourself accountable is to put your budgeted Christmas cash on a pre-paid card. You’ll watch your budget more carefully and when the money is gone — it’s gone. You’ll be less tempted to add just one more gift to the pile because of a super sale.

Santa Bag

Credit Image: Karen H on Flickr

Read more from Making Merry Meaningful: 12 Tips for Designing the Holiday You Always Dreamed Of (Part One) at Gold Coast Mama