Why a little extra cash can go a long way

shoppingnewyear

Christmas is around the corner: the season of giving and the season of spending. It seems that with each year we’re spending more and more and saving money at Christmas is an almost impossible feat. However, there a couple of places in our spending where we can save a coin or two. In Wizzcash’s 2015 UK Christmas spending summary we get an in depth look at what exactly UK households are spending their Christmas budget. If we use this summary to narrow down our costs we could be making a big difference with our money this Christmas.

Your happy future

According to Wizzcash’s survey, 11% of shoppers spend over £500 on gifts every Christmas. The most common amounts of money we spend on presents are usually under £100 (17.2%) and £200-£299 (15.7%). Could you imagine the possible saving you could make here? Assuming you are one of the people that spends up to £299 on Christmas presents, if you were to cut your budget in half you would have, in ten years’ time, saved almost £1500. You could buy a brand new, great quality computer, a bike, a suave new suit, or it could be your ticket to exploring another country. An even better choice would be to look into investing which could, if you play your cards right, set you up for life. Cutting back a little bit at Christmas could mean securing your future.

Charity

‘A little goes a long way’ has always been the slogan for charitable giving and that’s because it’s true. By putting aside a little bit of money this Christmas you could make someone else’s Christmas a little – or a lot – better. There are so many charities that could really use donations around Christmas time. For £22 – half the amount of money an average UK household spends on Christmas decorations – Crisis could give to a homeless person on Christmas clean clothes, a warm place to sleep, a health check and treatment from a doctor, optician and dentist, and three hot meals including Christmas dinner. By saving a small amount of money this Christmas season you can make a big difference to someone in need.

Get yourself a safety net

None of us plan for emergencies very well. Sure, we think about what could happen every now and then, but we don’t show much restraint when it comes to the latest gadget or splurging on a stylish new winter coat. Heck, 3.6% of UK residents think that Christmas jumpers are a necessary purchase. If a particularly festive family decided to save money and not buy Christmas jumpers this year there are all sorts of ways that can wisely store or spend their money. They could pay of their debts, buy some life or health insurance or put it in a savings account with good interest. £100 today could buy you the house you retire in fifty years from now.

Whatever type of Christmas you’re hoping for – quaint and small or lavish and big – saving a penny here and there doesn’t do any harm. It could be something as simple as reusing your Christmas decorations that could end up saving you hundreds of pounds a few years from now. So, before you whip out that credit card at the Christmas shop counter give a little think about what else that money could do.

Generic advice is not a service regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.