Don’t let a giftless Christmas get you down. Take a look at these six things to do if you can't afford Christmas gifts and see how they can help you.
Money can be tight around the holiday season, and sometimes people find themselves in a position where they can’t afford Christmas gifts. While it is natural for panic to set in and feelings of dread, the truth is there are ways to enjoy the holidays still even if gifts aren’t an option.
Should you find yourself in a situation where buying gifts aren't possible, take a look at six things to do if you can’t afford Christmas gifts this year. You will find that these tips can help you find peace of mind during the hectic holiday season.
6 Things to Do If You Can't Afford Christmas Gifts This Year
1. Don’t be ashamed to let others know.
Taking financial responsibility is admirable and nothing to be ashamed of, especially during the holidays. If you are worried about friends and family buying gifts for you and having nothing to return, don’t hesitate to let them know ahead of time that you can’t buy gifts this year. Chances are they will be understanding and admire your courage to get yourself out of debt and handle your financial situation.
2. Offer your time
Even if you can’t afford gifts, you can always gift your time. Offer to watch a friend’s kids, or attend a free holiday concert with a family member. Offer your time, which is still valuable, and a great way to show someone they matter to you. You can even make coupons for friends and family, offering your time to help with odd jobs and tasks.
3. Help the less fortunate.
You might feel like you are down in the dumps, but take this time to help others who genuinely have less than you. Volunteer at a local food pantry or soup kitchen where help is always needed. Volunteering is an excellent way to give without spending a dime and realize how much you honestly have. Volunteer Match is a great place to find reputable places to volunteer.
4. Have an honest talk with your children.
Let children know that you won’t be able to afford a big Christmas this year. They should know it isn’t their fault and not a result of their behavior. Make some memories and have some fun. Line up some free activities instead that you can enjoy as a family and still feel like you are celebrating the season. Spend some time making homemade Christmas gifts together. Not only will you have meaningful gifts to give, but you are making memories too!
Encourage them to count their blessings and even take the time to enjoy activity #3 mentioned above.
5. Keep your eyes open for freebies and free events.
Take advantage of free holiday festivals and open houses in your area. Look for free holiday movies on television, print off free holiday coloring sheets from the internet, and enjoy free holiday books and music from the library. Staying busy with these activities will help you feel like your holiday is full and joyous.
6. Get rid of items you no longer use to get the cash you need.
Making some quick spending money may be easier than you think, and you can declutter at the same time. Clean out your house of things you no longer need and sell them on eBay, facebook marketplace, craigslist, etc. These are also great places to look for more affordable, gently used gifts this time of year. Selling some old items not only cleans out clutter but helps you earn some cash for the holidays.