Is inflation eating away at your holiday budget?

With the holidays approaching, how is inflation affecting your holiday shopping? Or are you spending less, given the likelihood of a recession and the abysmal performance of the stock market in 2022?

I have it somewhat easy in this regard because I don’t have a big family, so I’m usually only buying gifts for about five people and making a modest donation to charity. But I really feel for people like this letter writer, who’s feeling the pressure to buy gifts for her four children, 14 grandchildren and their partners on a Social Security budget. https://www.thepennyhoarder.com/budgeting/gifts-for-grandkids-on-social-security-budget/

I’m guessing most of the family would understand if she said she simply can’t afford gifts. I’d never want a loved one to buy me a gift if they were stressed about whether they could afford it. In fact, when my grandparents got older and my seven cousins married and had kids, they eventually decided to stop with gifts. I was glad they made that decision because I’d rather see them hang on to the little extra money they had.

If you’re feeling cash strapped, how will it affect your holiday season? Will you trim your shopping list? Use a credit card for some purchases? Change your travel plans? If you’ve started any holiday traditions that don’t involve spending money, I’d love to hear about it as well!

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I save all year long for the Holidays. In addition to Christmas, both kids and husband have birthdays in November. I put aside 40$ with each paycheck for this, so I have about $1000 for birthdays and Christmas. I did not adjust the amount I was able to save, but I am definitely getting less for my money! And honestly, I wont spend all that- I will carry it over to next year.
My favorite part of the holidays is Christmas Eve, when my extended family gets together for dessert and coffee, and we do a Yankee Swap (10$ limit). Just spending time together is special, and we always laugh at the crazy swap gifts.

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kellyfromkeene i also love when my sisters and i get together we do this every year i am blessed with 6 sisters and we all live in the same area. we limit ourselves to 20dollars

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Things are a little tighter this year, but we’re not specifically curbing our spending on gifts. However, we are a bit more mindful of what we’re buying. We have a 2-year-old and thankfully he’s getting tons of gifts from other family members. Can’t wait to see him opening all the presents!

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I fund a Christmas Club savings at my credit union and have been doing so for years. That helps with gifts, but this year I’m supposed to have visitors so that is money needed for preparation expenses, which are getting out of hand and not accounted for in my Christmas Club savings. I’ve had to use a few thousand from my emergency fund for car repairs recently. And, because I have no intention of using my emergency fund to entertain guests, I’ll probably cancel the visit. Sounds a little Scroogey, yes.

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that awesome, i have great grandchildren and i buy for them i stay on budget and love being with them on Christmas Eve

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We stopped exchanging Christmas gifts among the adults several years ago. Honestly, the gifting became a headache…not knowing what to give, wrong sizes, wrong color, not to mention the time involved shopping. Instead we give money to our favorite charities and then we each share the charity story at our Christmas gathering. It’s not necessary to disclose the amount. I look at it as a win-win. It hopefully makes Christmas a lot better for someone struggling and, If budgets are tight, it can actually be a less expensive gift (save gas, time and worry) and be a bigger bang for your buck. When it comes to the kids, we still give wrapped gifts.

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Yes… Too expensive to get gifts considering all the grandkids like are phone’s, and video games. $$$ is what they ask for now. I don’t like to give $$ . I enjoy the curiosity of them trying to figure out what i wrapped up. The look on their faces when surprised :scream_cat:. I am struggling to do Christmas shopping this year.

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@lori.wulff yes, my kids are older teens now and it is hard to find something they want in my price range. I hate giving money- it’s no fun at all. But if I have to give money or gift cards, I wrap it in something else so it looks like there are presents under the tree. BTW, I love your little tree!

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very nice idea i also stop buying but i do give gift cards and they enjoy them

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