6 Easy Ways to Spend Less this Christmas

This year, more than ever, many families are needing to tighten their belts and rein in the festive spending. But that doesn’t have to mean wearing a Grinch hat. With a little planning and creativity, it IS possible to avoid a budgetary blowout while celebrating December 25th in style. So, for a holly, jolly good time these holidays – minus the financial hangover, read on. Here are six easy ways to spend less this Christmas.

1. Create a budget – and don’t budge from it!

Setting a budget is a smart move at any time of year, but it’s especially crucial coming up to the Christmas and New Year’s period. It’s typically one of the busiest, most social and – you guessed it – expensive times of the year, so it’s important to budget accordingly. Don’t even think about entering December without a clear idea of what you can realistically spend on gifts, entertainment, food, drink and travel without ending up in the red. Once you’ve set your budget? Be strong! Don’t be swayed by ‘bargains’ you don’t really need or fall for aggressive marketing campaigns. Remember the real meaning of the holiday – spending time with family and friends – and don’t believe you have to spend loads on gifts to show how much you care.

2. Make your own gifts

If 2020’s taught us anything, it’s the satisfaction that can be gained from DIY. Making something from scratch, whether that’s baking some festive treats, making scented candles or soaps is good for the soul. And it’s great for the wallet as well! Christmas is the ideal time to put those talents acquired during lockdown to good use and cook/ craft/ paint/ stitch or whittle this year’s gifts. Not only will your loved ones appreciate the time and effort you’ve put in, you’ll love avoiding the last-minute gift-buying crush.

3. Turn unwanted items into cash.

If your DIY skills leave a lot to be desired and you still need to purchase gifts, try rifling through your cupboards, drawers and garage. We’ve ALL got unloved, unused items gathering dust and it’s surprisingly easy to turn them into cold hard cash. Try selling your unwanted items on Gumtree, eBay or one of the hundreds of Facebook selling groups. You can then use the proceeds from any sales to buy this year’s Chrissie gifts, or help pay for that giant ham. And if something doesn’t sell? Donate it to your local charity shop and you just might make someone else’s Christmas a little merrier.

4. Throw a Christmas picnic

Instead of sticking with a traditional hot turkey roast with the trimmings this Christmas, why not take a more casual approach? We’ve all been cooped up for much of the year, so a relaxed backyard, park or beach picnic will make a welcome change – and be a total hit with the kids.

Pack an esky or two with ice and ask your guests to each bring their favourite festive dish and chosen drop. You’ll save bucketloads on catering, get to try a variety of delicious foods, and avoid much of the stress – and clean up! – that comes with hosting Christmas lunch at home. Just remember to pack the sunscreen, find a shady spot and stay hydrated!

5. Make money while you shop!

Some extra shopping around Christmas time is pretty much unavoidable and, admit it, it can also be a lot of fun. However, it does pay – literally! – to shop smart. Shopa Save allows you to earn cash back while you shop, whether that’s in-store, on your couch or on the go. Simply download the app and join for free, link your Visa or Mastercard, then earn cash back in your account when you shop at participating retailers. Earning cash while you shop – what’s not to love?

Think Secret Santa

If your family resembles the Brady Bunch, gift giving can be an extremely expensive affair. Thankfully, Secret Santa isn’t just for the office Christmas party! In a family Secret Santa (or Kris Kringle), each person is given a single person to buy a gift for, while receiving a gift from THEIR Secret Santa. A budget is then usually set to ensure a bit of an even playing field.

Only having to buy for one person both allows you to save money and gives you the luxury of time to select a personal, meaningful gift. You’re also likely to end up with a gift you like instead of a pile of last-minute gifts destined for land fill. Or Gumtree (see point 3).

Want more local savings?

How I saved with Cashback

I love the convenience of online shopping, especially in this challenging time of COVID-19. The restrictions haven’t made it easy to visit the shops and I often have the kids in tow which makes it even more of a challenge!  

I am one of those shoppers that love to use reward cards. I figure, I am shopping anyway, why not enjoy the benefits? So, I was super excited when I found Shopa Save. It’s different to the other loyalty programs I use, instead of building up points, I build up cash. Shopa Save provides cashback on purchases in different industries and categories including;

• Food & Restaurants • Hair & Beauty • Health & Fitness • Alcohol & Liquor • Shopping & Retail • Travel & Holidays • Entertainment & Adventure • Trades & Services • Tyres & Auto and Gifts

I found Shopa Save online and browsed their website. I entered my location and up pops a range of different industry and service offers available in my area. Cashback offers start at 3% all the way up to 50%! What was even better, is that some of the brands I love to buy from already provided offers. I couldn’t actually believe I had been making purchases without reaping the benefits – why hadn’t anyone told me about Shopa Save earlier!

I quickly made the decision to join up. I downloaded the App, and entered a few simple details, my name and email. I then linked my Mastercard to my account and I was pretty much ready to go, it was that simple.

I start shopping by using the unique cashback link which is provided in the offer. I make my purchases just as I would normally and once the retailer or service provider approves the sale; the cashback hits my account. I like to watch my money grow, so that once I hit my target I will withdraw and transfer it into my bank account.

What I also love about Shopa Save is that it supports Australian businesses. When I use the program, it gives me that little reminder to ensure I am supporting local!

As the COVID-19 restrictions are easing and kids are back at school (yay, freedom!), shopping in store is becoming a little easier and manageable. What’s great is the flexibility. Once my Mastercard (you can use Visa or Debit) is connected to my Shopa Save account I can shop in-store too. I just need to make sure I bring my linked cards and it basically works the same way as online.

My cashback savings land into my personal e-Wallet which can be withdrawn as soon as the minimum $15 target hits. I usually leave it in to build up over time, so from the beginning of the year to Christmas time, just when it’s time to buy gifts. Whilst I am spending my savings, I shop with Shopa Save to ensure I continue building up my funds!

Shopa Save also lets me know when my stores are having a sale, it’s the perfect reminder as who doesn’t love a sale?


The only disappointing thing about Shopa Save is that I didn’t know about it earlier! But the good things is I am letting you know about it today.

Want to start saving more now?

Become a member for free at: shopasave.com.au or download the Free Shopa Save App and start earning cashback!