It is that time of the year again where it is socially acceptable to eat until the button on your jeans pops off! I love everything about Christmas, spending time with family, the pretty twinkling lights that go up in and around the town centre and of course being able to eat Quality Streets at 7 o’clock in the morning!

Of course Christmas isn’t easy when you are on a tight budget, the first term at University is coming to an end, so of course the first payment of your student loan is drying up too. Having to buy so many presents with the little amount that is left isn’t easy, so here are my top 5 tips on how to get people the best presents you can when you have little money left in your bank account.

My first tip would be to start early! Planning is key, if you the whole family and all your friends to buy for then going out on a big shopping spree and spending it all at once isn’t ideal. If you start early you can spend your money gradually without having to live off baked beans for the rest of the year.

Secondly, try to plan and budget! Plan what you are getting everyone and work out exactly how much you can afford to spend on them without having to break the bank. If you can make a list of everyone you have to buy presents for and plan out exactly how much you need to spend on the months upcoming to Christmas, it makes it so much easier to budget for other essential things like your weekly food shop and of course pizza!

Thirdly, if you are interested in crafts why not try to make gifts. You will save so much money in the long run! You could make people little decorations for their Christmas tree or even decorate photo frames. More often than not they will be preferred too!

Fourthly, talk to your family and friends and explain you don’t have a lot of cash right now. Coming to some sort of agreement on how much you are going to spend on each other saves a lot of hassle!

Last but not least, budget shops can be a life saver! It may seem frugal but who knows that photos frame you bought your mum was from Home Bargains. Christmas isn’t all about spending money, it is the thought that counts! Buying your family or friends but filling it with a collage of photos of you and them can be more heartfelt than splurging on a jumper they will wear once.

Christmas isn’t all about giving, it is about spending time with the ones you love! Hopefully if you follow these tips you will be able to enjoy Christmas without having to take out another overdraft.

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