Sustainable Irish sleepwear brands to help you catch some zs
Sustainable Irish sleepwear brands to help you catch some zs

Sarah Finnan

Andrew McGinley: ‘I cannot forgive the act of murder. I can’t forgive how my children died’
Andrew McGinley: ‘I cannot forgive the act of murder. I can’t forgive how my children...

Amanda Cassidy

What actually consitutes self-care when you’re a mother
What actually consitutes self-care when you’re a mother

Sophie White

The expert guide to your hair problems, from thinning hair to heat damage
The expert guide to your hair problems, from thinning hair to heat damage

Melanie Morris

Best hotel restaurants: 16 places to add to your Irish staycation bucket list
Best hotel restaurants: 16 places to add to your Irish staycation bucket list

Sarah Finnan

Here’s how you can manage symptoms of work anxiety
Here’s how you can manage symptoms of work anxiety

Jennifer McShane

Step straight onto the sand with these 5 Irish hotels on the beach
Step straight onto the sand with these 5 Irish hotels on the beach

Megan Burns

5 inspiring self-help books that will change your life
5 inspiring self-help books that will change your life

Jennifer McShane

Jamie Lee Curtis shows every parent how to handle their child transitioning
Jamie Lee Curtis shows every parent how to handle their child transitioning

Jennifer McShane

Toxic relationships: ‘Why walking away from my mum was the best thing I could have done’
Toxic relationships: ‘Why walking away from my mum was the best thing I could have...

Amanda Cassidy

Image / Editorial

Last minute shopper? Here’s how to do Christmas on a budget and save your money


by Colette Sexton
18th Dec 2019
blank

It’s a week until Christmas, and while most of us are excited, it also stirs up worry for those trying to do Christmas on a budget


Christmas is nearly upon us, and while that usually means fun times with your favourite people, it can also be incredibly stressful for people on a budget. Here are some tips about how to keep your finances on track even during the festive frolics. 

Make a list

Most money advice gurus will tell you that you should never go grocery shopping on an empty stomach. I would advise that you also never go Christmas shopping in a panic (i.e. Christmas Eve at 5 pm) or without a list. There is a reason Santa always makes a list people!

Your Christmas lists should include a list for food/entertainment, a list for presents and a cost estimate of travel to include taxis, trains, and so on. The lists will keep your present buying in check and ensure that you only buy what you really need.

Cheap and cheerful catch-ups

Christmas is a great time to catch up with friends and family that you haven’t seen in a long time but all of those reunions can add up to put a serious dent in your savings. You don’t need to sit inside all Christmas alone to save money, but instead, you can be clever in where you meet.

If your friends want to meet for dinner, suggest an early-bird or a restaurant that allows you to bring your own wine. Or suggest getting everyone around for a potluck or take away. When out in the pub meeting friends, you could always be the designated driver. You’ll save money on booze and you’ll wake up hangover free. 

Re-gift

Most of us have items around the house that we received as gifts but that we have no use for. That does not mean that the item is fit for the dump (which is very unsustainable). Instead, think of who in your life would like that item and re-gift it. Likewise, you might have a voucher that you have not used yet, and instead of buying something you don’t really want or need, use the voucher to buy a present for someone on your Christmas gift list. 

Secret Santa

Many of us are in large groups of present buying and a great way to keep Christmas cheer going while also not making your wallet weep is to introduce a Secret Santa within your family and/or friend group. Set a budget limit so you aren’t tempted to go crazy for fear of looking cheap. Plus it is a fun activity to guess who bought for whom. 

Think sustainably

We are all trying to do our bit for the environment and we shouldn’t throw our climate action out the window when it comes to Christmas. When shopping for Christmas presents, check out second-hand and vintage shops for fantastic presents at bargain prices. Re-use your old decorations or even make your own, and instead of buying wrapping paper, use old magazines and newspapers. There were many beautiful issues of IMAGE Magazine this year that would make fantastically glam and excellent quality Christmas wrapping paper. 

Move away from fast fashion

Instead of panic-buying whatever sequinned outfit you can find in the shops, arrange a clothes swap-shop with your friends ahead of festive nights out so you all get new Christmas outfits for free. Also consider bringing your old clothes to a dressmaker to give them a new lease of life for a fraction of the price of a new outfit. 


Read more: What I Spend on Christmas: The 26-year-old recruiter earning €42,000 who’s spending €1000 over the festive season

Read moreTo-do list stressing you out? Doing this simple task will improve your productivity at work

Read moreWhat I Spend on Christmas: The 22-year-old PR Executive earning €29k who’s spending €100 on her boyfriend

Also Read

BRITs
EDITORIAL
Best BRITs – The standout moments everyone is talking about from last night’s BRIT Awards

The BRIT Awards took place over in London last night, welcoming the who’s who of the music world inside the...

By Sarah Finnan

Full House, onscreen father Danny Tanner
EDITORIAL
We’re remembering our favourite onscreen dads for Father’s Day

With Father’s Day just around the corner (this Sunday 20h June, so yes, you do have time to buy yours...

By Grace McGettigan

audiobooks
EDITORIAL
6 brilliant audiobooks worth listening to during lockdown

Six great audiobooks to listen to in lockdown. It took me ages to come around to the idea of audiobooks....

By Jennifer McShane

blank
EDITORIAL
Book gift ideas for every kind of reader

Anyone who said books and socks make for boring gifts has clearly never received a delightfully absorbing book or a...

By Amanda Kavanagh

blank
IMAGE WRITES
The sexist commentary at Wimbledon still remains a problem

Wimbledon in 2021 and once again female athletes are singled out on the playing field, a great deal of the...

By Jennifer McShane

blank
EDITORIAL
‘Totally allowed but totally shouldn’t: Welcome to the Great Irish Pandemic Paradox’

In a time when cool heads are needed – it’s more than the current heatwave that’s melting minds, writes Amanda...

By Amanda Cassidy

stress
EDITORIAL
Are you up the walls? How the language of stress causes stress

Do you find yourself talking about how busy and stressed you are? With stress, the words we speak are like...

By Sophie White