Saving Money on Holiday Gifts

Posted By on November 28, 2011

Tough times become even more apparent while gift shopping for the holidays. While many families, including my own, have opted to skip gifts for adults or draw names, there are ways to save money on the gifts still on your list.

Coupon Check. If you use services, such as Groupon, Living Social and other sites offering deals, check the purchases you’ve made of these deals. Can you purchase gifts using any of your deals? Can you “gift” the deal to someone? To make some money, you can sell your deals on SellMyDeal.com.

Stores, such as Bed Bath and Beyond, have coupons you can use anytime. Other stores, such as Aaron’s Brothers, Ulta and Kirkland’s, to name a few, will send you coupons if you sign up for their emails. If you have a CVS card, you can receive coupons to use for your next purchase. For example, I received a $5 off coupon that I plan to use to purchase a Burt’s Bees set for my niece.

Gift Card Check. If you’ve received gift cards as gifts, you can use those to purchase gifts for others which makes things super easy.

To get a little cash, you can also sell your unused and unwanted gift cards through several websites, including Plastic Jungle, Gift Card Rescue, Project Gift Card and CardWoo.  These sites also offer gift cards for reduced prices.  I haven’t used these sites personally, but I know several people who have used them.

Create Your Own Gift Basket. Making your own gift basket is a great way to save money. Gift baskets work best when you have a theme.

For a movie night theme, pick up a DVD or two, popcorn and candy. With the movie night theme, you can go in all sorts of directions – Retro, Brat Pack, cartoons, action flicks, etc.

Another favorite gift basket is the dinner basket, and I’ve seen this many times as wedding gifts. Use a lovely bowl as the “basket” and toss in pasta, sauce, wine, and other ingredients. Put dry ingredients for breads, cookies and soups into a jar so the recipient can add any liquid or perishable items. Make sure you list instructions.

Buy potted herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, peppermint, basil and others for cooks or garden lovers, and they can create their own herb garden.

For a relaxation basket, put in a CD of relaxing music, candles and bath oils. Create your own line of bath products by searching out recipes on the web. I haven’t been brave enough to create my own salt and sugar scrubs, but the recipes make it look easy.

Create Your Own Gift. I’ve heard how some families are only doing handmade gifts, and my favorite website Pinterest is chock full of great ideas for homemade gifts.

Consumable gifts are always among my favorites, and whipping up a batch of fudge or cookies are great gifts. One of my Facebook friends who is a single mother suggested cooking a dinner or casserole for stressed out parents.

With imagination and effort, you can save money on gifts.

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