The festive season is approaching quickly. What are you planning to do this Christmas? Will it be one at home with the family? Inviting the relatives over? Or maybe you’re heading away to get away from it all? The great thing about Christmas is that we know when it will come and it arrives every year. So we can plan for it. We can budget for it. Let’s have a look at Christmas food shopping on a budget and how you can get the most for your money.
What Do You Really Need?
Think about what you need in terms of food and drink for the festive season? What are the things that you often overbuy? What do you end up struggling to fit in the freezer or throwing out because you’ve bought it but not used it? Make a list of things that you really need and try to stick to it. This will help you to stick to your Christmas food shopping on a budget. We’re not saying not to have some treats, but things that will go off quickly, there is no point in overbuying them. There’s also no point in buying things that won’t be used. Don’t buy a bottle of gin if nobody drinks gin (for example).
The shops are only closed for one day, so do you really need to add four loaves of bread to your click and collect order? There is so often a panic that we’ll run out of things but how much are you really going to eat? Yes we might pile our plates high and over indulge a little bit, but come Boxing Day we can go and buy a pint of milk and some bread buns should you run out.
Change Where You Shop
One of the best ways to get your Christmas food shopping on a budget is to simply change where you shop. Different supermarkets charge different amounts. They have to because they have different sized shops, marketing budgets, more staff and delivery vans. Some have websites that you can shop on. However the costs that they spend, offering these services must be passed onto the customer in some form or fashion. These factors are why prices are higher are some supermarkets compared to others. Often the food is exactly the same. Sometimes it’s even better at budget supermarkets! If you swap where you shop, you can save money, whilst will help you stick to your budget.
If you want to shop at the same supermarket you normally do, perhaps you collect vouchers or have a Christmas card you pay onto, you can still save cash. Take a look at different shelves in the section you are in. If you usually buy the branded stuffing, for example, take a look at a different shelf, usually further down. You’ll find the supermarket own brand version which is usually much cheaper. It could be as much as 50% cheaper. Imagine if you did that with every item? You could save a small fortune with every shop. The perfect way to do your Christmas food shopping on a budget.
Stick To Your List
Shops and supermarkets can tempt us into buying more than we need with offers. We can be tempted, we’re only human! There are a few ways that you can make sure you don’t buy what you don’t need or didn’t want in the first place. Firstly, always stick to your like. Of course, there might be things you have forgotten. However an offer is only good if you were going to buy it anyway. If it’s not on your list and you buy it, that means you’ve been tempted into spending, when you didn’t want to.
Another top tip is to never shop when you are hungry. When you are peckish, you can be pulled in by sights and smells of the supermarket aisles. That box of mince pies looks more tasty than ever! Make a list before you head to the shops. That way you can give yourself the best chance of sticking to your Christmas food shopping on a budget.
There are some things that you want to buy fresh a couple of says before Christmas. However there are other things you can buy early and pop away ready for the festive season. With some of these things, you can take advantage of offers maybe as much as three months before Christmas. With a little bit of planning and preparation you can save yourself some money and be in a more organised position come Christmas. Supermarkets often have deals on things like boxes of chocolates which you might buy as Christmas gifts for school teachers. These can be bought and put in the back of the cupboard until you need them. They’re not going to go off in a couple of months.
You can also do this with things like fizzy soft drinks. Even alcohol! If you see the things on offer that you would be serving up at the Christmas dinner table, buy it when you see it at the best price. If Shloer is £1 a bottle now and you always enjoy it at Christmas, grab some! The same with J20s and cans of cola. Pop it in the garage or shed, it’ll be fine. If you see Prosecco, Bucks Fizz or some of your favourite red wine on offer, get it at the best price. There isn’t much point in leaving it until it goes up a couple of pounds! That money can be spent elsewhere! Or saved into your bank account. Some early consideration for the festive season can help you keep your Christmas food shopping on a budget.
These are just a handful of ideas that you can use to make sure you keep your Christmas food shopping on a budget. You will want to make your home inviting. There are many of us who have been struggling financially for various situations but we still want to enjoy a festive and family Christmas together. If you plan and prepare ahead of the hustle and the bustle, you can enjoy all of the trimmings, without paying as much of the cash! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!