5 Ways to Save this Holiday Season

Laura Adams, MBA,
December 10, 2010

Most of us spend more than usual during the holidays, so it's a great time to take advantage of clever ways to save money. Here are 5 frugal tips to make the most of your holiday budget:

  1. Use a gift card exchange. At cardpool.com you can buy discounted gift cards, sell gift cards for cash, or trade gift cards.  It's a nifty marketplace that connects you with millions of gift card holders so you can find the perfect gift for someone on your list. Cardpool.com has gift cards from more than 200 top retailers for discounts of up to 30%.

  2. Give your time. Instead of spending money on a present, consider giving gift certificates for your time. Think about what the people on your gift list really need, like babysitting, cooking, gardening, organizing, cleaning, computer help, or a relaxing massage.

  3. Redeem your credit card rewards. If your card offers cash back or points, use those rewards for holiday gifts or gift cards.

  4. Save on wrapping paper. If you get newspapers, magazines, or grocery-store paper bags, turn them into a fun, recycled wrapping paper.

  5. Cut travel expenses. If you fly during the holidays, don't buy expensive food and drinks in the airport. Instead, bring an empty water bottle and fill it up at a water fountain after you go through security. Also, have your own snacks or a wrapped sandwich in your carry-on bag. Here's a list of foods the TSA allows.

Christmas Morning image courtesy of Shutterstock