The holidays are just around the corner, and while most of us could use a break from the bank, we don’t want to scrimp on making the season merry. There are plenty of ways to save money this holiday season, whether you’re on the road or lodged up for the winter.
While the budget certainly isn’t the main focus of the holiday season, spending time with loved ones, old friends and new, can be costly, especially if you’re hosting the festivities. Here are some money-saving tips that can enable you to continue your favorite holiday traditions without breaking the bank.
1.) Invitations: Postage for holiday party invitations can really add up quickly. To save on such expenses, go online and use email or online event planning services such as www.evite.com to plan your next event. Evite.com sends free digital invitations out to anyone you choose. Another option is to send private messages using online social services communities such as Good Sam’s online community or Facebook.
2.) Food: Instead of going all out and buying, making and preparing (not to mention cleaning up), ask guests to bring their favorite holiday dish. Whether you’re getting together with family, friends or members of your local Chapter, they’re most often happy to pitch in. Here is where you can get creative. Go to your local craft or drug store and pick up recipe cards. You can embellish them with stickers or other festive adhesives to make recipe cards look fun. Distribute the blank decorated recipe cards at your dinner and watch as everyone shares recipes with one another. In a nice way, it’s bringing people together to share a meal and also take away a new recipe for their friends and family.
3.) Decorations: Another way to save cash is to make your own holiday decorations. You can do a lot with a piece of foam from the craft store and fake flowers that are often readily available in most department store dollar sections. Wrap ribbon around the circular foam tube and hot glue fake flowers all around to make a holiday wreath. This can hang in your house or RV. Let’s not forget about stockings – blank stockings and fabric paint can be found at local craft stores during the holiday season. Get together with kids, grandkids, or RVing friends for a day of decorating stockings and cookie decorating.
4.) Spreading Holiday Cheer: A cookie exchange is a fast-growing holiday trend that is truly timeless and economical. Gather a group of friends – or family – together and have everyone bring a batch of cookies or bars to share. Once everyone is together, distribute the variety of cookies to guests so that everyone has one of each. Distribute blank decorated recipe cards at this event, too, for added fun.
5.) Homemade gifts aren’t just for the kids. More than ever, people are using digital photography for gifts. Photos can be saved and manipulated with photo editing software such as Photoshop and then printed off at a photo printing place or a local department store like Target. Buying a blank frame and decorating the exterior with paint or decoupage or using a print transfer onto fabric (tote bags, T-shirts or blankets) can be a fun, creative way to show your loved ones how much they mean to you.
So, whether you’re at the campground this holiday season or spending time lodged with relatives or friends, there is a conservative way to make the holidays special – and perhaps even a little more thoughtful than buying something lavish.