10 Ways Thrifty People Shop For Christmas

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Buying gifts for those you love at Christmas time doesn’t have to be as expensive as you might think. Here are ten ways our family keeps our Christmas budget within our means.

10 ways thrifty people shop for Christmas.

10 Ways Thrifty People Shop For Christmas Gifts

1. Shop Clearance

When my kids were little I got most of their gifts on clearance after Christmas, but now that they are older and have specific requests, clearance finds work best for stocking stuffers—for instance I will buy clearance found headbands for my daughter’s stocking.

2. Use Coupons

I love finding great  coupons in free magazines .  For years I used a Halmark coupon for $5 of $5 or more to purchase chocolate for my children’s stockings.

3. Discount Gift Cards

If I know I am going to be buying gifts at a certain store I will check sites like Cardpool for discounted gift cards first.

4. Swagbucks

For 300 SB points over at Swagbucks  you can cash in on a $3 Amazon gift card code to help with your online shopping. With 24 ways to earn it doesn’t take long to earn 300 SB points in fact I have some readers reporting earnings of up to $100 a month from Swagbucks.

5.  Hand Crafted Items

I love to knit, locker hook, and make my daughter items I know she will enjoy. I often have a book case full of completed crafts when Fall arrives. I sell some, but I give more as gifts.

6. Homemade baking items

Some of my favorite recipes to give as gifts are my Caramel Crunch, my simple 3 minutes fudge and my chocolate bark.

7. Dollar Stores

I love dollar stores for stocking stuffers or gift basket fillers. I recently discovered a great online dollar store--Hollar. Items are not all a dollar like some dollar stores but Hollar does have a great selection of items that range from $1 to $10 that would either make great Christmas gifts or stocking stuffers, including name brand toys, make up and more.  Shipping is free on your first order — please note minimum order allowed is $10.

8. Save up and cash in your reward points

There are more reward companies out there than just Swagbucks .

3  point reward programs I have like

3  cashback apps I  like 

2 programs I use for earning magazines & books

  • Recycle Bank  (I currently get Runner’s World each year with my Recycle Bank Points)
  • Tyndale Rewards (a point program that pays you with books! a book lovers dream)

If you like filling out surveys I have tried and liked..

9. Saving money on Christmas Cards

My family has approached saving money  on the family Christmas card list in various ways.

Some years we do clearance found Christmas cards stuffed with a family letter and coupon bought prints of our latest family picture. (psst… here is where I find all my free photo codes)

Other years we have had our daughter make everyone their own piece of art to enjoy.

In extremely lean years we have sent out e-cards with a picture and letter attached and saved money on cards, prints and postage. (Its also a green alternative)

10. Choosing an experience over a gift

It might not seem frugal to some,but my husband and I prefer to plan a early January getaway rather than give gifts to each other.

What makes it frugal is we search out deals for the accommodation, and use coupons for our food and entertainment, and we of course pay cash.

Got any thrifty Christmas tips to share? Let me know your best thrifty Christmas tip in the comments.
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  1. Thrift store shopping! As you know there are a lot of “like new” or actually “new” items that find themselves in thrift shops. I buy these sometimes and no one knows the difference!

  2. great ideas! We do alot of those things ourselves. I am a frugalista. I love to find a bargain. Keeping up with the Jones’ is not part of our life anymore. It is more important for us to be honest with ourselves. Spending out of our budget does not cut it anymore. I usally start Early in the spring collecting items along the way. Then we can have a nice Christmas with less stress. I am working on a post about avoiding holiday stress right now. Part of it is about the enourmous amount of gifts that we recive that we can’t enjoy them. Giving time later on is a great way to enjoy the holidays all through the year. We get a summertime family vacation from Mom and Dad. One of the highlights of the holidays is getting a letter from mom and dad telling us what the summer plans will be. It is something like, Save the date for a trip to ……. We love it. It means we will get together again besides the holidays. Thanks for your insight today.

    • Oh wow! I love the idea of the trip letter! My kids might be a bit small to really appreciate that now, but I am going to file it away for when they are adults and on their own.

    • I so love the idea of the trip letter too. My son gets a ton of toys and other gifts from our extended family. Many times he gets bored and tired from unwrapping everything. I think the trip letter would be an awesome idea.

      • Another great idea for little ones is asking relatives to chip in on family memberships instead of more toys. My kids grandparents use to send us money to buy a family membership to the local children’s museum for Christmas. My kids loved that!

  3. We LOVE to send out Christmas cards every year but it can really get expensive. Last year I found that I could buy discount cards for a dime a box at Dollar General! Couple that with free or cheap prints from snapfish or someplace similar and I’ll be sending out cards this year for about 1/4 what I spent last year!

  4. Love the idea of a January getaway. I know there are discounts on plane fares when you get to travel on the first day of January. If I can save a great deal on accommodation and food, it’s a way to go, just make sure I still got the energy after a week long Christmas celebration.

  5. Kathy Collins says:

    Use the savings catcher on Walmart.com or download the app. You scan or enter in your receipt code and if there are any sales in stores close to your Walmart, Walmart will credit you the different and there is no expiration to the amount. I am saving mine all year to get stocking suffers.

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