Fes­tive splash not nec­es­sary

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

It may be bet­ter to give than re­ceive, but nearly 70 per cent of New Zealan­ders plan to spend less this Christ­mas than they did last year.

In a re­cent sur­vey by online fi­nan­cial guide Sorted, 68 per cent of re­spon­dents hoped to keep costs down by spend­ing less on presents, food and hol­i­days than dur­ing the pre­vi­ous fes­tive sea­son.

Just 24 per cent in­tended to spend more.

Re­tire­ment Com­mis­sioner Diana Crossan said over­spend­ing was com­mon at Christ­mas, with many peo­ple go­ing into debt as a re­sult of get­ting car­ried away with their own gen­eros­ity.

‘‘No one wants those close to them to get into dumb debt for the sake of a lav­ish din­ner, ex­pen­sive gifts or a hol­i­day.

‘‘The best idea is to de­sign your own Christ­mas money plan, in­clud­ing what you’re go­ing to spend on gifts and for whom, and ask ev­ery­one to pitch in for meals.

‘‘Then, share your plan with your friends and fam­ily so ev­ery­one has the same ex­pec­ta­tions,’’ she said.

Are you re­sort­ing to pulling out the plas­tic to pay for presents and treats this year?

Put your credit cards away and check out these ideas from Sorted.org.nz to avoid a dumb debt han­gover.

Plan your spend­ing

Work out how much you have to spend, then di­vide it up be­tween gifts, dec­o­ra­tions, en­ter­tain­ing, travel and hol­i­day costs.

Food, glo­ri­ous food

Christ­mas meals don’t need to be com­pli­cated to be mem­o­rable. Keep it sim­ple with sea­sonal, lo­cally pro­duced ingredients and get ev­ery­one to pitch in.

It’s the thought that counts

Work out a gift strat­egy with friends and fam­ily be­fore you go shop­ping. You could agree on a spend­ing limit, or just buy presents for kids.

Re­mem­ber that the more thought you put into a present, the less peo­ple think about what it might have cost. An al­bum filled with pho­tographs or some de­li­cious home bak­ing will mean a lot. For more tips visit sorted.org.nz.

Stuff.co.nz

SPEND WISELY: Don’t stretch the bud­get too far this Christ­mas.

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