Spreading the cost of Christmas

Apparently, there are only 50 days until Christmas and now with Halloween out of the way all our focus is on the festive season ahead.

I like to be as organised as I can with presents and tend to spread the cost of Christmas out. I start buying gifts from September onwards and I like to keep my eye out for bargains.

Spreading the cost of Christmas

Gifts for children (Toys)

There are a lot of toy sales on around this time of year. It’s worth keeping an eye out on places like Sainsbury’s, Tescos and Argos who all do a half price sale or similar.

I also keep my eyes peeled on the HotUK Deals website and have set up alerts on my phone for specific things I am looking for.

Another useful thing I find is joining a local Facebook selling group. Many second-hand toys are up for grabs and some are brand new or have hardly been played with. It’s also a great place to sell on toys you no longer need without the hassle of having to pay eBay insertion fees.

Mr H and I also like TK Maxx – we’ve managed to pick up some books for 2.99 each and stocking fillers for the boys this year and I also found packs of diecast cars in Aldi for £3.49 each at the weekend.

The Entertainer is also a favourite of mine. Last year I went in and spent around £100 on all the gifts I needed to buy for the children of friends and family. They have a huge range of toys so there is bound to be something for everyone. I had a budget of £10 and under for each child and managed to stick to this.

Gifts for the family

Again, I try to save all my Boots Advantage card points for this time of year buy from their 3 for 2 range of gifts. Tesco’s also do their Clubcard boost where you can sometimes triple the amount of vouchers you have.

Food and drink

I’m lucky that my parents work in Morrisons so inform me of any deals on beer and wine. (their staff discount is also very useful!) I tend to save up my nectar card points throughout the year and use them on the big Christmas food shop. The year before last (we were at my in-laws last year) it took £25 off our bill which was great! I also start stockpiling a few items into our food shop each week that I know we’ll need over Christmas. Things like soft drinks, wine and nibbles so again it doesn’t seem like you are spending out so much in one go!

What do you do to try and save the pennies and spread the cost of Christmas?


  1. I always have good intentions to start buying for Christmas early and then get to this time of year and realise I’ve failed again. I’m am terrible with a deadline and seem to work best when I’m up against it! I love TK Maxx for gifts – there’s always a good range of presents for everyone and I love a bargain! Thanks for reminding me about the Boots Advantage Card offers. I have built up quite a few points this year 🙂 #parentingpicks

  2. These are brilliant suggestions – Christmas is SO expensive! I try and save up all of my loyalty points for gift times too – Boots are especially good for that as there is so much choice there for everyone. Thanks so much for linking up to #ParentingPicks lovely! Mim x

  3. I didn’t realise that you could set up alerst on sites like Hot Deals – that’s so helpful as I hate trawling sites like that! I have bought some gifts from tesco as they have their clubcard boost on so they were free! Hurrah! Fingers crossed I can finish without spending too much more. We are making homemade gifts for friends thsi year. #parentingpicks

  4. Gemma - Nagging Mother

    These are useful tips. I normally spread the cost of Christmas by starting in August but I am soooo far behind this year!! We are planning to get it all done at the end of the month eeeek!xxx

  5. Useful tips lovely! I am a bit last minute with Christmas, last year was the first year I was almost finished by the beginning of December, but as Kinley was due on the 12th December I knew anything could happen so I need to be prepared. I am worried about the cost of Christmas this year as it has been a tight few months for us, so I will definitely be keeping these in mind 🙂 xx

  6. I like to buy my presents early too, but I haven’t been as organised this year. Also I am finding with my 4 year old son at the moment that is is changing weekly! So it is hard to commit and buy something.

    • I know what you mean Laura – my 5 year old keeps adding things to his list! I’ve already told him that he won’t get everything he’s asked for as Father Christmas is a very busy man!!

  7. We definitely try to watch the budget at Christmas – getting presents for 3 kids can get very expensive. I’m with you on starting early (although I’ve not been too organised this year). I find when you are running out of time you tend to overspend rather than look for just the right thing or getting a good deal. I bought my husband a reconditioned IPad a couple of years ago by shopping really early and carefully. This year I’ve bought lots of Mr Men books from a book stall they had at the preschool for 50p each (they are pre loved but in great condition). I let my daughter pick out a present each for her brothers at the schools Christmas fair last year as well. I like Tiger for stocking fillers they have some really nice things that are very cheap and cheerful.

    • Oooo I’ve not thought about looking in Tiger for stocking fillers – will have to go and have a look. Am with you on starting early although it seems to have had the opposite effect this year where I have ended up buying lots of things for the boys as it has been so spread out… oops!

  8. I’m terrible with these things!! I tend to start thinking about Christmas at the beginning of december!! We try to not buy too many presents for the girls either. Now that Sienna is a little bit older and she is enjoying even more playing with her toys we can get some exciting toys for her. Bella already know what she wants. She wants to write a letter to Santa about her wishlist. It is so cute to listen to her. I do all my shopping in Amazon. You can buy anything there!!! And because I have their Prime service I receive everything pretty quick! We only need to worry about Nick’s family for presents as my family is not around so the costs are less. We do our supermarket shopping at Asda (prices are super low). Great ideas to save for Xmas!! 🙂 xx

    • We are big fans of shopping on Amazon too – I don’t know what we wold do without it! It’s just so handy isn’t it? We have the problem this year where we know what to buy E but not for M as he is a bit younger and will pretty much play with anything!

  9. Rachel Bitmead

    I love Christmas and have brought presents already 🙂 i hate the madness frenzy and could never be a last minute person – it would stress me out too much although some of my friends thrive on it!!

  10. Helen WonderfullyAverage

    Eek! You’ve got me a bit worried now by saying there’s less than 50 days until Christmas! I really wish I was organised like you. I bought a couple of presents in August then nothing since! Some really great tips here though, will be pinning this for when I eventually start my Christmas shopping xx

  11. I have most the presents bought! Phew! I have been using The Entertainer site and have got quite a few bargains from there! I have been saving my Tesco clubcard points up all year! I have about £76 which will be used towards the Christmas food shop x

  12. Rachel Melton

    We’ve got Mini M’s birthday in December too. We usually start buying food items in Oct to spread the cost. I’ve won a meat voucher this year so our food shopping will be much less. Present wise I just buy for immediate family & close friends children, it can easily get out of hand xx

  13. I really need to get more organised, usually by now I’ve finished my Christmas gift shopping but this year I’m only about half way through! Having to replace my car this month hasn’t really helped, so definitely working on budgeting more this year! Thanks for linking up to #PicknMix

    Stevie xx

  14. Laura Generva Pilkington

    This year we are only buying presents for the children in the family. We did it with Alex’s family last year and it worked well. Trying it with my family this year and it’s gone down like a fart in a lift! But we need to save money as we want to buy a house, etc!

    We start buying in September to and I’m always in the lookout for sales and shopping round for the cheapest price.x

    • I think just buying for children would be so much easier! I always struggle with buying for adults as I never know what they would like! Children are happy with toys so thats easy! x

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