It’s that time of the year, the holidays are coming! What is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year, can also be the most expensive and stressful time of the year as well. We often want to give the best gifts to our loved ones, spend endless hours thinking or looking for that perfect gift and are more than willing to spend that extra amount of money to get that gift. There’s no problem about that and I do the same thing. It definitely is stressful to look for the right gifts and it definitely can lead to spending more money than you intended to spend. We can budget and save for gifts but to be honest, our fear of not getting the perfect gift overtakes the budgeting and saving you worked for. It definitely takes a different level of discipline to not over spend on the holidays, it really does in my opinion. So instead of me spreading some false hope that you could save hundreds of dollars this holiday season without the feeling of disappointing your loved ones (even though they probably don’t want you spending so much money), I will give some of my opinions on how YOU can at least save some money on the gifts you buy. Some of my opinions won’t be applicable to everyone, but if you are able to, take advantage of it!
Applying For A Credit Card With A Spending Bonus
If you are in a position where you have a great credit score and haven’t opened much credit cards within the past couple of years, do some research on certain credit cards that offer bonus points after spending a certain amount of money within a certain time frame (typically three months). That way, you can receive something after spending money you already have to spend. Think about it, if you have to spend $500.00 on gifts this holiday season, why not open a credit card like the Chase Freedom Unlimited or Chase Freedom Flex? Did you know you will receive a 20,000 point bonus or $200.00 cash equivalent after spending $500.00 within 90 days? You gain $200.00 back after spending $500.00 on the gifts you already needed to spend on! That’s a 40% return!
Let’s take it up a notch, what if you have to buy many gifts and are planning to spend $2,000.00? Also on top of that, you are hosting this years Thanksgiving and Christmas, which means you have to spend money on some food for both holidays. After it’s all said and done between Thanksgiving and Christmas, you spent another $1,000 on groceries, desserts and supplies for the events. So you have to spend $3,000 within a 2 month span between gifts and hosting the holidays. Did you know there are many credit cards that offer bonus points after spending $4,000.00 in 90 days? You still have to find something mindful to spend the other $1,000.00, but certain bills can be used by credit card, regular groceries, eating out (hopefully you aren’t dining out too too much!), etc. are other ways to spend $1,000.00 in 90 days on top of the other expenses you already have planned for the holidays!
If you know you’re going to spend the money already, why not get rewarded?
Credit cards are often misused because we’re easily pulled in to the fact that we can pay minimum payments on the credit card rather than pay off the full balance. Now, if you cannot pay off your credit cards in full or are not confident, do not partake in credit card maximization strategies, you can easily fall into debt + the high interest rates that credit card providers charge if you are not spending responsibly. On the other hand, if you are able to pay off your credit cards each month why not maximize credit cards? They are readily available for all of us anyway!
So get out there, do some research on some credit cards that you feel will benefit you the most and sign up and be rewarded for what you already need to spend! My philosophy with necessary spending: If I have to spend on it, why not get something back for it!
Use Cashback Websites
Cashback websites are great ways to save on holiday shopping and online shopping in general! Especially with the current situation we are in having a global pandemic, we are more than likely to shop online this holiday season. So, how do cashback websites work? Think of it as one or two extra steps to saving an extra couple of dollars. There are two well known websites I use for cashback and I NEVER forget to make sure I check these websites before buying anything:
The process goes like this:
Sign up for the website => look for the site you want to shop from (if it is not available, it’s okay, you tried your best) => click the link on the website that will direct you to the website of your choice => shop like normal and check out under the same tab => earn cashback on the website and receive it within 12 weeks!
*Important Tip – Make sure you use the same email you used to sign up for the cashback websites when checking out of the website you are buying from. The cashback websites won’t register the cashback if you use different emails!*
For a visual, I will be using TopCashBack.com to give a step by step scenario after signing up for the website and looking to earn cashback on Nike.com
TopCashBack Home Page:
Look up Nike and Click “Get Cashback Now.” Don’t forget the extra coupons some websites will have available in addition to the cashback!
Once you click “Get Cashback Now”, the website will turn to this page and you will be directed to Nike.com!
Shop as normal and you will be on your way to cashback! Now, you won’t save hundreds of dollars at one shot, but over time, you could end up having a couple of hundred dollars from cashback! I currently have almost $200.00 in cashback alone with TopCashBack that is waiting to be withdrawn in the future!
Google Discounts (Trust Me, It Works More Often Than You’d Think)
I typically google discount coupon codes before paying with online shopping. This is after I use the cashback websites to access whichever site I need to buy from! For example, the other day I bought a Brooklyn Nets Jersey on DicksSportingGoods.com because I have no self control with my most favorite team ever. After going through TopCashBack.com to get 2% savings on my purchase, I found out after googling that Dicks Sporting Goods has a 10% off your first order if you sign up for their email listing! Now, I don’t shop at Dicks often, if I did, I’d use one of my many emails to get the savings time and time again haha! Anyway, so I signed up for the email listing and instantly got 10% off my purchase! My $110.00 jersey came out to $99.00 with free shipping! This doesn’t include the 2% cashback or $1.98 cashback I will be receiving in the future! It won’t work every time, but it’s worth the shot to Google around for a couple of minutes and find coupon codes, you never know what is out there! Another way to check is through cashback websites like TopCashBack & Rakuten. They will provide you with valid coupon codes and will be additional savings to the cashback they offer! What a steal!
Look, the point I am making with this post is: At the end of the day, we will have to spend money one way or another as consumers. It’s what we all do. Why not get a little back if you have to spend that money? I love getting quality products and I will do my best to pay the least for it. If you are able to save money on things you have to spend on, why not right? It’s all about mindful spending and taking that extra step. If you are being careful about how you are spending your money on top of what you are spending on, the savings make all the different. I hope you are able some money this holiday season, spend responsibly! I hope I won’t go crazy this holiday season, we’ll see…