Holiday Gifts: More Inexpensive Strategies

Holiday Gifts: More Inexpensive Strategies

So here it is, mere days until Christmas, and you're still working your way through your Christmas list. Plus you have next-to-nothing in your bank account. Take heart, fellow shopper. It is possible to give some quality gifts that will be appreciated without forking over your next paycheck plus an arm and a leg. Here are some inexpensive strategies to help you tackle those last few gifts on your list.

Gift of Time

If you don't have a lot of cash to spend on a gift this year, consider giving a gift that is literally priceless: your time. One of the best gifts my hubby and I received in recent years was the promise of a night of free babysitting from my nephew and his new wife. This didn't really cost them anything, and it was a gift we certainly used and very much appreciated. For a gift that doesn't break the bank this year, consider giving of your time; it could be giving a few nights of babysitting to parents, free pet-sitting or even house-sitting.

Daily Deals

If you spend any amount of time on the 'net, you've probably heard of at least one or two daily deal sites. These sites (such as Groupon, Saveology and Woot) offer up different items for sale every day at deeply discounted prices. Recently, I scored a $50 bowling gift certificate for $10 and a $30 restaurant gift certificate for $15. For gifts that won't break the bank, this is an excellent route to take as it really stretches your gift-giving dollar. Keep in mind, some deals are local and some are national, and it pays to read the fine print before purchasing just to make sure there aren't any tricky forthcoming expiration dates.


Another way to give gifts the ultra-cheap way is by re-gifting, which is the art of giving away something that was given to you. First off, if you do consider going this route, make sure the gift you want to give away goes to someone completely different than and unattached to the original giver. Next, make sure the gift is new or in next-to-new condition (like a sweater you never wore that has no holes or a CD you never listened to still in its case). If you can't or won't use a gift and it's sitting around gathering dust, why not pass it one to someone else who might like it (after dusting it off!)?

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Jana's picture

Jana wrote:

Tue, 12/20/2011 - 13:02 Comment #: 1

I love the idea of giving the gift of time. We don't do this much for Christmas and Hanukkah, but my husband and I give time to each other on our birthdays. We get to sleep as late as we want, and take the afternoon to do something for ourselves. That time is probably my favorite gift of the year!

femmefrugality's picture

femmefrugality wrote:

Wed, 12/21/2011 - 00:10 Comment #: 2

I love giving and receiving all of the above. This year I think that's number one on my wishlist...TIME! Regifts are great for secret santa events. That way you don't have to go out and spend $10 on a random gift for a random can just pull something random out of your regift box. (Making sure you didn't get it at last year's office party, as you pointed out haha)

101centavos's picture

101centavos wrote:

Thu, 12/22/2011 - 02:07 Comment #: 3

I like the gift of food. A plate of chocolate-chip cookies between neighbors is always greeted with smile.