The Wage Shop

Christmas. Already? It seems to come round quicker and quicker these days (or is that just my age?). Every year, things seem to get that bit more expensive. Whether it’s the toys getting more expensive, the festive shopping trolley costing more, that Christmas holiday you take every year creeping up in price or just the fact that we overspend, there’s no escaping the fact that it can feel overwhelming at this time of year to keep on top of the rising costs. Experts reckon that the average family will spend over £1100 on Christmas. That includes £32 on decorations, £225 on food and drink, then the rest on presents alone! That’s a lot, so where do we find the money to fund it all?

Nearly £8.5 billion was put on credit cards over Christmas last year – many people saying it would take them the full year to pay this off. A fifth of people last year said they spent more than they had planned to and were struggling to pay it all back. 38% of UK shoppers use their credit cards at this time of year, 10% even taking out loans to cover the rising costs. It can be an expensive day so how can you make sure you keep a reign on the budget without restricting the fun?


Ideally, putting some money aside each month is the best way, but it’s November so that’s no use now! But, if you are beginning to worry about the cost of everything now, make a plan for January to save a certain amount each month, then next year you can start the festive season a little more stress free. Some people use saving schemes, or voucher schemes to help them. Although these can be useful, be sure to check the details carefully to make sure your money is protected if the worst happens to the company.


Make a list of what you need and stick to it! This applies to gifts, cards and the festive menu! It’s so tempting to just throw caution to the wind and buy whatever you want, but those sleepless nights over Christmas and New Year worrying about paying the rent won’t make those happy faces on Christmas morning worth it. You’ll be too stressed to join in and that’s no fun for anyone.

Find the best deals

Seek out the best deals to make the most of your money. Aunt Sally likes her Gin? Instead of the £40 bottle you were going to buy, why not try one of the cheaper alternatives? The budget supermarkets have won awards for some of their drinks and their bottles cost much less than the branded versions. The budget supermarkets also have lots of choice at this time of year for non-branded booze, which is just as good as the brands. Shop around too. Most Supermarkets and large chain convenience stores have offers on over Christmas. If you know what you want to buy, it can make the process of checking your local prices much easier. Don’t forget online too. If you have Amazon Prime, they often have some really good deals on Pantry items and with Prime it’s free delivery too!

Do you really need to buy it?

Think about what gifts your children want. First Christmases are always magical but let’s be honest, does your 10-month-old really know that you’ve only bought them two or three toys? Or are they much more interested in the shiny colourful wrapping paper and box? It can be hard, but at such a young age, they don’t know how much you’ve spent. They enjoy playtime with mummy and daddy much more and memories last a lot longer than the toys we give our younger children.

What about older kids? They always seem to want the most expensive trainers, latest console or new phone. How can you manage this? If you’re set on getting them these things, again, shop around. Make sure you are getting the best value for your money. Check online and high street stores for the best deals. Any supermarket bonus points you can use to get vouchers to help off set the cost? We all hand over the loyalty card at the till, but do you remember to spend the vouchers? Convert those points and save yourself some money.

Festive Food

What about the Christmas meal? Lots of pubs and restaurants open over Christmas these days, but at a cost of anywhere between £40 and £100 per head, these can very often be the most expensive part of a large family’s spend over Christmas. Some reports say that families spend an average of £174 for the festive meal! That’s a lot of sprouts and port.

So how can you save money on the meal without taking away the turkey and beers? The best way of saving on your Christmas meal is to shop around. Shop in some of the budget supermarket chains and experts reckon you can do the food for around £3 to £4 per head, not including the booze.
Again, prepare in advance. Get your list together of what you want to eat. Lots of supermarkets offer great deals in the run up to Christmas, and shopping around really does pay off. This accounts for your festive tipple too. Shop around for the best deals and you can really take the sting out of the cost of your shop, meaning you get to relax and enjoy it rather than being stressed all season.

How can The Wage Shop help?

We make sure your payroll is managed correctly, meaning you can relax knowing your Tax and National Insurance obligations are met. We also offer a Pay Day Advance service, so when you’re struggling in the New Year to make it to the end of the week, you can get an advance of up to 90% on your wages to help keep things ticking over. Click Payment Advance to get started, or head over to the website for more details.

Not an employee of The Wage Shop?

Contact us to find out about registering with us! Use our Contact Us section on the website or our Live Chat to get in touch. Great advice, pay day advances, simple and flexible approach – what’s not to love? Get in touch to find out more.