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National Debtline

Advice you can trust

Christmas tips

There can be a lot to think about in the run up to Christmas.

If you’re also worried about your finances, it really helps to plan ahead and get free debt advice.

 

Christmas top tips

We’ve created some top tips for Christmas, to help ease your worries during the festive season.

We have a wealth of information on our website. You can find over 50 fact sheets to help you deal with your debt.

You can also chat to others dealing with their debts via the MoneySavingExpert Forum's Debt-Free Wannabe board.

 

Smart saving

Allow yourself an affordable amount in your personal budget for occasional costs like Christmas, birthdays or car repairs. Try to put something aside for unexpected costs and emergencies if you can.

You can also set your festive budget for next year. Our Budgeting and saving fact sheet will help you to complete an affordable and realistic budget. When next Christmas comes around, you'll be ready for it.

Budget

Planning for next Christmas

If you’re worried about your finances, getting free debt advice can mean starting the New Year with the first steps of your debt free journey. Our tips on budgeting and saving will also help you plan towards next Christmas.

You can also join the MoneySavingExpert Forum’s Debt free Wannabe challenge.

Free debt advice

Our website contains a full range of information to help you deal with your debts.

Use our fact sheets to help you with a particular issue or our sample letters to help you contact your creditors.

Our tips on budgeting and saving will also help you plan towards next Christmas.

Christmas top tips

Set your festive budget

Setting a festive budget is probably the single most useful step you can take – but fewer than one in three of us do this. Make a list of the people you want to buy presents for, set a budget for each and stick to it. Plan ahead when it comes to your other shopping too; for example, on food, decorations and visiting family and friends.

Keep paying bills

Don’t forget: in December you still need to pay your normal household bills, such as your mortgage or rent and your utilities. If you get paid earlier than usual, consider paying these bills as soon as you can, so you know that what you have left is what you can spend on Christmas.

Spread the cost

There are lots of good deals around at Christmas, so make sure you shop around to get the best price. You could leave buying your presents until later in the month as sales often start early. You could also spread the cost of Christmas over the whole of December by buying non-perishable food items earlier in the month.

Resist borrowing more

It can be very tempting to borrow money to pay for the cost of Christmas. Think about whether you can afford to pay it back. If you do decide to take out credit, check the terms and conditions and create a personal budget to make sure you can afford the repayments.

Just buy for kids

You could agree with your family just to buy for the children. If you still want to buy for adults, you could consider doing a ‘Secret Santa’ so that each adult only buys one gift. Handmade presents are often cheaper and have that personal touch.

Look out for free activities

With the kids off school there is always pressure to keep them entertained. If you’re not careful, the cost of keeping them busy will soon mount up! Find out if there are free activities in your area over the holiday period. They may be advertised in the local newspaper and community centres.

Get advice now

If you are worried about your debt, get free debt advice now. Don’t wait until the New Year. The earlier you seek free debt advice, the sooner you can deal with your debt and ease your worries.

Enjoy Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! We hope it is filled with love and laughter. If you need advice or support over the Christmas period you can get free debt advice, 24 hours a day, on our website. Our webchat service is open until 1pm on 22 December 2018 and open again from 9am on 2 January 2019.