Forward planning for Christmas

English: Gift ideas for men - wrapping paper e...
Now's the time to plan for Christmas.

Yes really!  Get a head start and get out to the sales - stock up on wrapping paper, Christmas cards and decorations that are now going for a song.

Plan your present lists for family and friends - buy them in the sales - either now or as you go through the year, so you avoid that last minute dash for presents or having to deal with the crush of the crowds in December.

Start saving now - Christmas is one of the most expensive times of the year and if you've maxed out your credit cards to pay for it then setting aside a regular amount each month makes more sense and can avoid you getting into debt.  Open a savings account, put aside £50 a month and by December you'll have £600 towards Christmas.

Do the same for a holiday fund - save up a set amount each and every month into your savings account and by the time you book your holiday you'll already have a pot of money towards it.

Think about what worked and what didn't over the holiday period.  How much did you overspend by?  How much food and drink was wasted?  Yes it's great to over indulge once in a while and enjoy those seasonal treats but not if it ends up in unnecessary waste.  Make a note of what you could change next time around.

Christmas should be about being with friends and family and not about the material things in life.

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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