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Christmas can be enjoyable AND affordable

By Joel Stanier

21 December2011

Christmas doesn't have to break the bank Think a good Christmas is always an expensive Christmas? Think again. Financial solutions company Think Money has been offering its tips on how families can enjoy the special time of year without feeling the effects for months to come.

Responding to research by comparison website uSwitch.com - which found that 26% of people were considering replacing some of this year's gifts with an 'IOU' - the company said that a few practical changes could help families enjoy Christmas at a fraction of the usual cost.

Christmas - saving money One idea is re-using Christmas decorations, instead of throwing them all away. Once the tree comes down, it can be tempting to throw the tinsel and baubles away - especially if they were only cheap - but storing them safely in a loft or cupboard could keep them in pristine condition for next year.

Another idea for cash-strapped friends and families is a 'Secret Santa' - in which each person buys one other person a mystery gift. That way, everyone gets a present, but nobody should spend any more than they can afford.

Or how about spreading the cost of food and drink across the family? If you're hosting, it's not too much to ask aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents to bring along a bottle or an item of food.

But the company was keen to emphasise that these tips are only likely to help people who are able to manage their finances reasonably well. People with more serious debt problems, they said, may want to consider a debt solution such as a debt management plan.

Image iStockPhotos / Ivan Bliznetsov (1st image) and Jonathan Brizendine (2nd image)

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Tags: christmas, debt, christmas debt, affordable, budget, decorations, secret santa, xmas, festive, holiday, saving money

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