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Don’t have a nightmare before Christmas

Don’t have a nightmare before Christmas

Category: Money

Updated: 12/12/2013
First Published: 12/12/2013

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

For many people, Christmas is the most expensive time of the year. All those presents, decorations, Christmas parties and food purchases can quickly add up, but what happens if you run out of money?

Sometimes it can be difficult to keep track of your outgoings and it'd be all-too easy to let your budget run haywire, but there are ways you can keep your cashflow steady and avoid having a nightmare before Christmas.

Be savings savvy

Dipping into your savings account could well be necessary at this time of year.

In fact, you might have set up a regular saver for the sole purpose of funding this year's festive purchases, and if so now's the time to get access. But, if you haven't planned ahead and don't have an easy access account you'll want to be aware of any restrictions – if you've got a fixed rate bond or a notice account you'll usually have to give a certain number of days' notice before you can withdraw funds (unless you're willing to take an interest rate penalty), so make sure to check the small print before you make your withdrawal.

Get money for nothing

Cashback is a big deal at the moment, and luckily there are plenty of ways you can take advantage of firms' generosity. There are a huge number of cashback websites available so if online shopping is your method of choice make sure to see what the options are, as buying through one of these sites means you could rack up the rewards as you shop.

Alternatively, consider using a cashback credit card – check out our pick of the best and see how much you could get back. What could be better than getting money for nothing?

Flash the plastic – responsibly

A lot of people will turn to credit at this time of year with the monthly paycheque often not covering the full festive spend, but if you need to rely on cards make sure to stay sensible.

Ideally you'll want to opt for a card that offers 0% interest on purchases for a set period of time, allowing you to buy everything you need and pay it off in the new year without racking up additional interest, or if you've already bought everything consider transferring the amount to a 0% balance transfer card.

Just bear in mind you'll need to make at least the minimum payment each month (and preferably more) to ensure any 0% deals remain intact.

What Next?

Check out the latest savings rates with our best buy charts

Compare all available 0% credit cards

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.