Inflation is a penny pincher.
Despite the fact that the holiday season is still months away, a number of polls indicate that shoppers are already worried about how they will be able to purchase the gifts this year.
According to a recent Bankrate.com research, almost 40% of holiday shoppers claimed that inflation is altering the way they shop, with the majority using money-saving tactics including buying fewer goods or less costly brands and using coupons, discounts, and credit card rewards to offset expenses.
Another recent survey found that 59% of Americans are worried about buying gifts this Christmas season because of increasing pricing.
As a result, many customers are starting out ahead. According to a study by Bankrate, more than one in ten people began their holiday shopping before the first of September, and fifty percent intend to start earlier.
“Holiday shopping will look different this year with inflation around 40-year highs,” Ted Rossman, a senior industry analyst at Bankrate, said.
“Starting earlier could help because it gives you time to spread out your cash flow and find the best deals,” he added.
However, 27% of consumers said holiday buying will place a burden on the budget, and 65% of customers said they don’t have money set aside for these expenditures.
According to Bankrate, another 27% of people indicated they would incur debt to purchase gifts, including some who planned to use buy now, pay later programs and others who would have to pay off their credit card balance over time.
4 methods for reducing holiday shopping costs
“Put your plan in place immediately,” consumer expert Julie Ramhold from DealNews.com mentioned that.
She suggested that you start with a gift list and your Christmas spending plan, then keep an eye out for price reductions throughout sales events.
“It makes sense to go ahead and buy it as soon as you see a deal,” she said. “That will lessen your stress the closer you get to the holiday.”
“I’m also a big fan of stacking discounts such as rewards credit cards, online shopping portals and store coupons,” Rossman from Bankrate remarked.
These four suggestions from financial expert Andrea Woroch will help you spend less over the holidays:
- Start your buying right away to spread out the cost. “Just make sure you are using a gift-tracking app like Santa’s Bag where you can keep tabs on what you’ve bought and for whom you’ve bought gifts for leading up to the holidays as well as how much you’ve spent so you can stay on budget,” Woroch said.
- If you’ve already done some shopping, Woroch advised taking pictures of your receipts using an app like Fetch Rewards to collect points that are redeemable for free gift cards at merchants like Amazon, Target, or Walmart to defray subsequent purchases or even to give as gifts. Additionally, you can get cash back for online purchases by using Cently or CouponCabin.com, which both have a free app and a browser extension.
- Woroch advises applying for a new card with a sign-up bonus or cash back if you meet the requirements. “You could essential earn free money to put towards holiday savings by taking advantage of those offers,” she said.
- Find further ways to reduce. “Think about how you can lighten your monthly spend by reassessing your bills — there’s a good chance you’re paying for things you don’t need,” she spoke. One excellent place to start is with subscriptions. The majority of people spend significantly more than they anticipate on recurrent costs like streaming subscriptions.