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The twelve saves of Christmas


According to a recent article, this year Britons intend to spend on average £868 over the festive period, with spending on food, drink and decorations increasing on previous years. However, at the same time, surprisingly people are planning to spend less on presents.
The average spend on gifts is expected to be £345.65, although there are some who according to the article, have advised that they would spend at least £500 on presents.

On average people buy 12 presents for members of their family and close friends, with a third of people saying the most expensive gift that they buy will be for their child, which is understandable.

No matter which way you look at it Christmas can be a costly time of year.

So, to help those who are looking to shave a few pounds here and there we’ve put together ‘The twelve saves of Christmas’.

Christmas save #1: Budget

Sounds simple but you would be amazed at the amount of people who don’t complete this simple task. It’s no different to your weekly shop; make a list of who you’re buying for, what you want to buy for them and then allocate a budget per person.

Christmas save #2: Freecycle

From cappuccino makers to toasters, doll houses to train sets, hundreds of items are available every day across the county, and they’re free! Giveaway websites such as Freecycle and Freegle are a network of local groups that allow you to search for items that people are giving away, yes that’s right, they’re giving away.
So, why not register today and get searching for that ultimate Christmas present.

Christmas save #3: Swap shop parties

Another green and environmentally friendly Christmas present saving opportunity presents itself to us here...and we love it, especially if you’re a savvy spender! Websites for swapping clothes and accessories have crept into our lives over the past twelve months or so, allowing people to look out for that luxury vintage piece that was all the rage ten plus years ago.
We love the website , which is a hub of information of how to get the most from fashion and clothes. The website hosts a directory of places to find and swap those unwanted clothes

Christmas save #4: Cash back and reward websites

Cash back sites are a simple idea. They connect the customer with the retailer via a link, which is supplied on a cash back website such as Quidco or TopCashBack . Once the item is purchased, directly from the retailer, the customer is then entitled to money from cash back website; however there is a wait before the money is received.
Cash back sites offer links to a multitude of retailers, from groceries and toiletries, to broadband deals and insurance policies. So, if you’re spending online this Christmas it might be worthwhile visiting a cash back site before making your purchase.

Christmas save #5: Price comparison websites

Comparison websites are designed to help you find the best deal when comparing like for like products, such as your gas, electric or credit card suppliers. There are additional price comparison websites out there who can search and compare everything you buy, from computer games and CD’s, to Ugg boots and Converse.
Again, another tool that allows you to save time and money when searching for presents this Christmas.

Christmas save #6: Voucher code websites

These websites work very similar to Christmas saves 4 and 5. They allow you to search for retailers or specific products and they furnish you with a unique voucher code, which should entitle you to a discount at the end of your purchase. Several of us here at towers are huge fans of these sites; however we have had incidents where the voucher codes doesn’t work and this is usually down to the small print. If you do experience issues with your voucher code we recommend reading the terms and conditions, you’ll probably find your answer there.

Christmas save #7: Loyalty points – Cash them in…!

If you’re anything like me, it has now become a habit when paying for your weekly food shop to hand over two cards to the checkout assistant. The first card is your payment method and the second is usually your loyalty card. Week in, week out, swipe, swipe, swipe and then what? Vouchers come through the door, they get placed on the fridge, they usually stay there and by the time I remember to check them, they’ve expired – great!
Promise me one thing this Christmas, you won’t let this happen. These vouchers are a cash alternative and they are there to be spent. If you need further information on your loyalty card please see our recent blog

Christmas save #8: Christmas e-cards

E-cards are a great way of sending a Christmas message to a multitude of people in one simple click. They’re also a great alternative if you have missed the international post dates too.
There are plenty of websites out there that offer you access to free Christmas e-cards. Some do ask for payments or donations, others do not; however we have found that the ‘free’ e-cards don’t tend to be as appealing as the paid for.

Christmas save #9: Book your Christmas holiday travel in advance.

Sounds straight forward doesn’t it, but if you were a fly on the wall in a train station I guarantee you would see someone who forgot to pre-book their Christmas holiday travel and ended up paying full price for their ticket home.
The main travel providers do offer substantial discounts when you book in advance, so if you are thinking of going home this Christmas we recommend researching the cost of travelling now, rather than later.

Christmas save #10: Help with Christmas dinner

Turkey, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, peas, gravy granules, Christmas pudding, Christmas cake, brandy, cranberry sauce and stuffing – the list goes on and on!
If you’re the Christmas dinner host this year why not ask your guests to help out by bringing along a dish or two. A starter here or a pudding there will help you focus on the main meal, plus help towards the overall cost of the dinner.

Christmas save #11: DIY Christmas decorations

At Christmas nothing beats homemade. The internet offers plenty of simple and straight forward ‘do it yourself’ Christmas decorations ideas for you to attempt. It’s a perfect way of keeping the Christmas spirit alive, especially when creating the Christmas decorations with your children.

Christmas save #12: Secret Santa

Participating in a secret Santa can be immense fun, and can be a good way of keeping your Christmas budget lower than it should be. Often seen in offices or workspaces, secret Santa has now become a firm favourite amongst groups of friends and large families.

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