Hey, guess what?! Christmas Day will be 25th December again this year!

It happens every year, yet it still catches us by surprise. December is likely to be an expensive month, so now is the time to start cutting back a little bit and start saving. The more you have saved ready for Christmas the easier your Christmas will be – why not join many of our members by saving regularly in our Christmas Club?

If you think things might be a bit of a stretch this year then a credit union Christmas Loan can help spread the cost of Christmas and take care of some of the stress.

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Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for our Christmas Top Tips! Starting on 15th November there will be fresh ideas to inspire you to a better and more affordable Christmas. Or search for #40DaysofChristmas 

The Christmas season can be stressful; family get-togethers, Christmas Day dinner, parties, presents to purchase, entertaining the kids, feeling short of money and bills to pay, etc. The more organised you are then the easier it will be. Here’s our top Christmas tips for an  easier time this year:

  • Budget– we know you don’t want to, but making a list of things you will need for Christmas and estimating how much they will cost is a great way to have a Happy Christmas. Our Christmas Budget sheet is your starting point. Download as a PDF or Excel spreadsheet.
  • Cut back now – now you’ve seen how much Christmas will cost in your budget, now is the time to cut back on your other spending now, so you can save towards Christmas. Our Christmas Club is a great way to put money aside
  • Have a clear out – Why not sell or give away stuff you no longer need to make space and make some money too
  • Shop around – last minute panic buying can be expensive, start your Christmas shopping early and shop around. Can you get the gifts you want cheaper elsewhere?
  • Ask – do you know what people want for the Christmas gifts? Just ask; they may already know what they want. Remember to tell them your budget for their gift.
  • Secondhand is OK – Kids toys too expensive? There are loads of ways to get what you need cheaper or even for free:  FreecycleBargainPagesLootGumtreeeBay. However be wary of purchasing used electrical items due to unknown safety.
  • Friends and family – make an agreement to buy for kids only, not the parents. Much cheaper and less stressful
  • Travel – visiting family and friends over Christmas? Book train tickets or flights early as this is usually cheaper.
  • Santa letter – Have your kids written to Santa yet? The address is: Santa/Father Christmas, Santa’s Grotto, Reindeerland, XM4 5HQ. Your letter must arrive by Friday 8th December so Santa has time to write back (with some help from Royal Mail)
  • Santa’s Budget – Some children might need reminding that parents have to send the money to Santa – so they must keep their list to one or two things that they REALLY want.
  • Sales – Keep an eye out for the pre-Christmas sales – there might be some bargains
  • Memories are worth more than things – book an event, theatre, show, theme park, etc. as a family gift everyone can enjoy and remember
  • Cash is so 1990’s – help your kids learn how to manage their money with our Smartcash account complete with Visa debitcard, smartphone App and parental controls. Available for 8-16 year olds.
  • Christmas Day doesn’t have to be 25th December – if you’re struggling to meet with family or friends on Christmas Day, that’s OK, why not hold your ‘Christmas Day’ the week before
  • Give – However tough life can feel, there is always someone worse off than you. Does your Christmas budget include a donation to a charity that is important to you?
  • Budget – Did we mention that already? Budgeting is for life, not just for Christmas! Now is the time to sort out your family finances, use the budget planner to help keep on top of your money.

How Advance Credit Union can help

Credit union loan – many credit union members spread the cost of their Christmas with a loan from Advance Credit Union. It is a good idea to repay your loan within 12 months; there may well be another Christmas Day next year 😉

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Start saving -Our Christmas Club is a great way to put money aside just for Christmas

Engage card

Engage Account offers great cashback rewards and discounts at Asda, Argos, M&S, Debenhams and many more stores for your Christmas spending. You can’t go overdrawn, plus your Engage Visa card is accepted wherever you see the Visa logo (see terms and conditions)