Holiday Planning: It’s Not Too Early!

If you observe any of the various holidays that are coming up in these next few months, begin planning for them today. Each occasion comes with its own set of costs. By strategizing now, you can enjoy them and come out ahead financially. Break out your budget and estimate the expenses for each of the holidays you celebrate.

About 62 percent of all consumers celebrate Halloween, and it is one of the biggest decorating days of the year (second only to Christmas). From candy to costumes, all the extras associated with this day can be downright frightening – especially if you have several children who will be dressing up.

For many people, the long Thanksgiving weekend is a time of turkey and travel. If you will be feeding more people than you normally do, and with pricy goodies, figure out what you will spend for the day. Also, if you will be on the road or in the air this month, determine what it will cost. Book airline tickets early – with flying becoming increasingly expensive, you’ll be grateful you did.

Americans spent over $200 billion on Christmas and other winter holidays last year – much of it on presents. If you participate in the season of giving, develop a detailed gift list soon. The biggest budget-buster is waiting until the last minute to shop and then overspending on impulse items. Think about what you want to get your loved ones and seek out the best deals now. Many Internet retailers waive shipping fees if you order early.   

Happy New Year! Parties can cost a lot of money. Will you be renting a tuxedo? Buying a new dress? Hiring a limousine? While this holiday is a bit deep into the future, if you anticipate a big night on the town, take a moment to calculate how much the additional expense ringing in 2008 may cost.

To know how much the holidays may cost, total the projected expenses for each month. Can you incorporate this figure into your budget and pay for it all without having to use your credit cards? If not, think of ways to have fun without getting into debt. Consider increasing your income with a part-time job, decreasing spending in other areas, or modifying your holiday expenses. Do so, and you can also celebrate your financial security!

Other Related Articles: Using Credit Wisely, How To Save While Splurging, Dream It and Achieve It

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