With only a few days left until Christmas, the holiday shopping season is already in high gear.
But with the excitement of big savings and special deals combined with how intoxicating the spirit of giving can be, it’s easy to see how someone can get caught up in it all and end up overdoing things.
That’s why having a plan and sticking to it can help make sure you don’t end up with a holiday hangover when the bills arrive.
Jon Hanai from HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union has these tips for surviving the holidays:
1. Plan. Before heading out to the store or jumping online, you need to develop a budget and then stick to it.
2. Avoid traps. Just because something is on sale doesn’t mean you need to buy it.
3. You don’t need to buy everything. For those creative individuals out there, something simple and handmade can have even more meaning and value than something bought at the store.
If you’ve already overspent and ran up your credit card, Hanai says, “don’t panic.”
“If you’re unable to pay off the balance and the interest rate on your credit card is high, look around and take advantage of a balance transfer promotion, if available. A balance transfer allows you to take your balance and transfer it over to a new credit card, which should have a lower interest rate,” says Hanai.