How to avoid OVERSPENDING for the holidays
With Christmas and the pre-Carnival and back to school seasons all rolled into the space of a couple of months, the way you manage your financial situation in this last quarter of the year will be crucial in determining your financial success in 2019. While some festivals and celebrations may be far more austere and somber than others they all take some degree of financial literacy to be able to enjoy the greater meanings, benefits and enjoyment of the occasion.
Financial literacy and restraint beg for greater consideration in a multi-cultural society such as ours where most of us are likely to participate in several of the major holiday events.
Planning is a gift to yourself
Thinking ahead will be the key to success over the next few months. Get your calendar out right now and take note of the holidays you have coming up. Most likely some of them require increased entertainment and grocery budgets, some call for a wardrobe intervention and even gym training, while others call for gift giving and maybe that trip to visit family far away. Whatever it is, try to make an honest and realistic budget for each of the remaining months of the year and start putting aside the required funds.
Do not wait for the eve of a celebration to start scrambling around for the things you need. Last minute scrambles are a sure way to see your money evaporate into thin air. For Christmas for instance, put your gift list together now and, if you can, start buying some of those gifts. It would not only save you money, you will save on the headache and blood pressure pills.
With the price of Carnival costumes increasing every year, it is enough to completely kill a well-wrought budget. Many mas players are now required to place a down payment when booking their costume. This is indeed a good budgetary measure; nevertheless, that final payment seems to sneak up on us. This will be especially true in a short season. Put aside a little something every month in anticipation of this midnight robber. Put your hands on a calendar of the events for Carnival, get a blue marker and choose the ones you would like to go to. Get a red marker. Go over your itinerary and start highlighting the ones you can realistically afford to go to.
The heat of the Moment
In each of the upcoming festivals, preparing meals and entertaining guests will play a fairly big part. Many of us have had the experience where we simply cook too much and we end up wasting food. Take a tip from the British – try to find out and confirm how many people will be coming by, so you can cater more precisely. For festivals that span a number of days, plan your menu ahead of time to avoid heat-of-the-moment cooking sprees.
To be prudent when spending over the holidays;
To exercise thrift when spending in order to avoid experiencing financial despair