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10 Must-Know Tips to Save Money on Christmas Gifts

save money Christmas gifts / save money gifts

How to Save Money on Christmas Gifts 101:

Does anyone else fear watching their bank account drop lower and lower as the days creep closer to Christmas? I love Christmas, probably more than the average human, however when living on a budget, Christmas can be a stressful time. It can be difficult to save money on Christmas gifts when you want to give a nice, meaningful gift to your loved ones.

I love giving gifts to people, but between my family, my husband’s family, our friends, my class of third-graders, my student’s parents, and my classroom helpers, there’s not much money left after all the gift spending has been done. But with bills coming the next month, you can’t just blow all the money you have for the sake of giving gifts. So what’s a person to do?

I have a few tips and tricks up my sleeve that help me not go bankrupt in the Christmas season, and will hopefully help you keep some money in the bank as well. Let’s take a look at my 10 must-know tips to save money on Christmas gifts.


how to save money on christmas gifts

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Enjoy video better than text? Watch my YouTube video on how to save money on Christmas gifts!

10 Must-Know Tips to Save Money on Christmas Gifts for Everybody

1. Create a Budget

Creating a budget is the first in most important thing that you must do when making a plan to save money on Christmas gifts. Without a budget, it’s easy to go crazy overboard with your spending and have nothing left after you’ve bought gifts for everyone.

Tip #1 for your Christmas Gift Budget – Determine who you will buy gifts for:

Instead of blowing through all the money, make a list of everybody that you need to buy gifts for.

Tip #2 for your Christmas Gift Budget – Determine how much you will spend on Christmas gifts for each person AND how many gifts you will buy for each person:

It’s important to set a budget for how much you will spend on each person, and even the number of gifts you’ll be buying for each person. This is especially important if you have kids, because usually you’ll be giving more than one gift to your kids.

Be realistic with how much you’ll spend on each person. It’s okay to have to spend a little less money than you’d like if it means having enough money leftover to pay the bills or keep your savings padded. There is no right or wrong amount to spend on each person, only you know how much money you have and how much you can afford to spend. 

If you’re really hurting for money, you can always spend time with somebody as a gift, such as going on a fun outing or event together.

Tip #3 for your Christmas Gift Budget – Use an automatic money saving app to save money for you effortlessly.

Another super useful tool I use to save money on Christmas gifts is something called Digit. Digit is an automatic money-saving robot that monitors your bank account and saves money for you every day without any work on your part. I started using the app on November 3, 2018, and today is November 22, 2018.

In those 19 short days, I’ve already saved $228.72. I haven’t had to do a single thing after I signed up for the digital app, linked my bank account, and set my limit so that Digit will not take any money out of my bank account if it drops below a certain amount. It’s seriously the EASIEST way to save money and is perfect if you’re not as diligent as you should be at transferring money into your savings, like me. 🙂



I love Digit, my automatic money saving robot, and plan to use him to save for many things in the future such as a family vacation, a house, etc. The great thing about Digit is you can have multiple savings goals going at once, such as “Christmas Gifts” and “Family Vacation”, and “Emergency Savings”. You don’t have to just use him to save towards one goal, Digit will divide up your savings each day among all of your “savings goals”.

If you’d like to give Digit a try, you can sign up here using my link and get a free $5.00 bonus, my treat to you! And most importantly, Digit is secure and will insure you up to $250,000.

2. Take Pictures of Things

This tip will save you tons of time and money. All throughout the year, anytime you see something you think somebody would like as a Christmas gift, or if they are with you and tell you that they love something, take a picture of the item and keep it in some type of picture folder on your phone.

You can either buy those items immediately and save them until Christmas, or you can wait until a sale is going on and buy the items then.

Either way, you know you’ll be buying something the person really wants and will enjoy. It certainly puts the joy into giving when you know you’re gifting something the person will love and use.

3. Choose Value Over Price

It can be easy to want to skimp out and buy somebody some random gift off the first shelf you see because it’s got a fat sale tag on it.

However, if you gift someone something they don’t even want, it will just get thrown away or never used, and you’ve essentially just wasted money on something.

You can still find gifts that will have value to someone that don’t cost a fortune. Be creative, just don’t choose a gift for somebody because it’s cheap. That’s no fun for anybody involved and you might as well just save your money.

4. Ask People What They Really Want

It’s never a bad idea to ask family members, kids, and relatives for a “wish list”.

Asking people what they really want is a fantastic way to save money on Christmas gifts because you can choose a gift from the list that fits your price range and then you’ll know that they will really like it.

5. Shop at Discount Stores

I went to Burlington Coat Factory for the first time a couple weeks ago to do some Christmas shopping with my husband and was shocked at how great the prices were.

Name brand clothing, toys, beauty products, home-decor, etc for a fraction of the cost you’d find it elsewhere.

Definitely hit up the discount stores such as Burlington, Ross, T.J. Maxx, Marshall’s, and even Grocery Outlet (they’ve got great kitchenware items, candles, beauty items, home decor, etc) before shopping at stores like Target.

Those stores will tremendously help you save money on Christmas gifts that you would have spent double the amount on elsewhere.

6. Make DIY Gifts Using your Local Dollar Store

I’ve found countless videos on YouTube with great DIY gift ideas using items from the Dollar Tree, the dollar spot section at Target, Walmart, etc.

I’ll link a few below, but if you search on YouTube “DIY gift ideas Dollar Tree”, you will find tons of videos with great ideas.

The DIY gifts aren’t junky either, you can definitely find some great ideas that people will actually like.


7. Use Ebates to Get Cash Back

I use Ebates every time I shop online to earn cash back on purchases I’d already be making anyways.

Ebates gives cash back for stores such as Old Navy, Groupon, Sephora, Ebay, Macy’s,, and many more. If you also want to save money on Christmas gifts when shopping online, you can use my link to sign up for Ebates here and receive a $10 bonus! Enjoy! 🙂 

Tip: I downloaded the easy to use Ebates button to my browser so whenever I hop onto a website that Ebates gives cash back for, it automatically pops up and tells me I’ll get % of cash back for that store. It’s extremely helpful so I never miss an opportunity for cash back. Get the button here so you never have to go to to save, you’ll automatically save each time you go to an Ebates qualifying website! (It’s completely free).

8. Buy Gifts That Are Eligible For Returns

Amazon is super handy when it comes to making shopping easy, however not all items are eligible for returns.

It’s a huge bummer when you order something that you end up not wanting to keep but can’t get your money back for it.

Be smart and only buy gifts that qualify for returns.

9. For Out of Town Family, Buy Online With Free Shipping

Sometimes shipping to out of town family and friends can cost more than the items your shipping. When possible, shop online and send your gifts with FREE Amazon Prime Shipping. If you don’t have Amazon Prime Shipping, you can use my link here to get a 30 day free trial of Amazon Prime and ship all your Christmas gifts for free!

10. Shop At Costco if You Have A Membership

I LOVE Costco. Costco has fantastic prices for HIGH QUALITY items.

From books, to home gadgets, to clothing, high quality toys at a great price, to delicious Christmas candy, you can find it all at Costco.

And they have a fabulous return policy so you don’t have to worry about getting ripped off if your item needs to be returned.

And That’s a Wrap!

I hope these 10 tips will help you save money on Christmas gifts the same way they’ve helped me stay under budget this season and not stress over money. Have a very Merry Christmas and happy savings!

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save money christmas gifts / frugal gifts

Resources That I Love:

Ibotta: Ibotta is an awesome cash back app that you can use on your smart phone to earn cash back rewards simply for shopping. It includes many popular stores such as Amazon, Walmart, Target, Costco, Fred Meyer, Thrive Market, and many more. When you download the app, use my referral code here to earn your first $10, and start inviting your friends to start earning huge bonuses!

MyPoints:  MyPoints is a rewards program that gives you points for reading e-mails, shopping, taking surveys, doing web searches, and more. Once you earn a certain amount of points, you can redeem them for a gift card of your choice to over 75 merchants. They also offer free access to coupons to hundreds of different merchants daily. I’ve already earned a $25 AMC gift card and a $50 Amazon gift card in 2 months just by using Mypoints 5-10 minutes per day before I roll out of bed. Sign up and start earning here.     

Groupon: Groupon is a deal-of-the-day recommendation service for anything from restaurants to vacations to electronics. Every 24 hours, Groupon broadcasts an electronic coupon for a restaurant or store in your city, recommending that local service while also offering you a 40% to 60% discount if you purchase that service. I use Groupon AT LEAST a few times a month if not more. I just had my oil changed at Jiffy Lube for $20 when it would’ve cost me $60 without the deal. Groupon has saved me thousands of dollars over the years. I never go anywhere without checking Groupon first. Use my link to save $10 on your next purchase with Groupon! 

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