Christmas is a joyful and triumphant time of year, but there can also be moments of panic, dread and fear when we realise how much more money we spend in December. As the big day creeps up our brains get overloaded with present ideas and it can all become quite overwhelming. To combat this, we’ve come up with a great Christmas Savings Challenge for you to follow at your own speed.

If you want to avoid the stress and ease into December calm and carefree, follow our top tips on how to save for the big event. Instead of fretting over spending hundreds of pounds in December, why not start planning now and spread the cost gradually in the run up to Christmas?

Christmas Savings Challenge

The idea is quite simple, and you can see it in action right here.

Write a list of everyone you’ll be buying a present for, followed by ideas for their presents (or just cost up how much you want to spend on each person). Add all the costs up until to get an overall figure for how much you’ll be spending on presents. All you have to do now is decide when you’ll need the money to start the festive, fun Christmas shopping (we’ll be hibernating and doing most of ours online).

Here’s a quick example:

You have £150 worth of presents to buy, you’re going to start saving on 8th October and intend to start your Christmas shopping on 17th December. That gives you 70 days, or 10 weeks, to save your budget.

Divide £150 by 70 days, and you’ll need to put aside just £2.15 a day. Similarly, £150 over 10 weeks will take your weekly saving challenge to £15 a week, in order to have your budget by mid-December.

You can set up automatic transfers from your bank account to a savings account online, which means your money can tot up nicely without you even noticing. The aim of this is to leave you pleasantly surprised and stress-free when December comes around (which is always quicker than anticipated) and you already have the money to buy all your presents.

Saving

If you want to start saving a little later then you just need to remember to divide the total cost of presents by the days or weeks you have until it’s time to shop. There’s nothing better than seeing family or friends open a present that they love, and remember that it’s the thought and effort that counts so you don’t have to spend loads.

Another thing to be mindful of is splurging unnecessarily. According to Spirit of Christmas Fair researchers, seven out of 10 people buy presents around Christmas that they then keep for themselves. Shopping (in store, or online) can be enticing and displays are set out to encourage unnecessary surges of generosity. Trying not to stray too far from your shopping list, and sticking only to what you need should save you some serious pennies.

If you try this great challenge, let us know how you get on over on Facebook and Twitter and tell us if this savings strategy helped you this year.