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6 ways to buy gifts on a budget

Finance & Money

Posted on Monday, November 23, 2020

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Good news – the season for giving is almost upon us, but there are ways to get through it without swiping your credit card or dipping into your emergency fund.


Here are some ways to spoil your loved ones and budget-friendly gift ideas to get you through this season.


1.  Buy gifts in bulk

Coming up with a unique gift for everyone can be time-consuming and expensive, so buying in bulk could be a better option. It will save you time and money and will ensure you don’t leave out any of your loved ones. You could buy multiple plain candles or mugs and personalise them with decorations. Jars are good options too as you can decorate them and fill them with chocolates, home-made biscuits or sweets. For DIY gift ideas and inspiration for decorating, check out Pinterest.


 2. Draw names

For a fun alternative, you could turn gift-giving into a game by putting all your loved ones’ names in a container and having everyone draw a name. This way, everyone gets a gift, but no one has to break the bank by buying gifts for everyone. If everyone is really strapped for cash, you could also set a maximum amount for the value of the gifts, for example capping it at R300.


  3. Go thrifting

Second-hand shopping doesn’t necessarily mean a second-rate gift. You might have to dig around a bit in thrift stores, but you’ll often come across a treasure that you know someone you love will appreciate. Books, framed pictures, vintage champagne glasses and unique clothing are all available at a fraction of the cost elsewhere, plus they are one of a kind. Best of all, you can even shop thrift items online these days on platforms such as Yaga.


 4. Give your time or skills

Time is money, so if you have something that you can offer that will be useful, why not donate your time as a gift? Make a list of all your talents and donate your time to your loved ones accordingly. Does your aunt never get time to herself? Babysit her kids and give her the night off. Are you good with admin? Offer to sort out important documents for your parents. Or if you’re great at baking or cooking, you could offer to bring food to a celebration or event.



 5. Gift something sentimental
Good memories are priceless, so why not use them as meaningful gifts? If you have great pictures or videos of yourself and loved ones, you can turn them into timeless presents. You could print them and frame them or add them to keychains or necklaces. If you have video clips, you could even create a movie of your favourite memories using apps such as Quik and VivaVideo.


 6. Take a day trip
When you’re on a budget, a good option is to go on a family outing or trip – an experience everyone can enjoy. Best of all, everyone can chip in and pay their own way with an amount they can afford. If you’ll be sharing a place, some of you can pay for groceries while others pay for activities and accommodation. Check sites such as Tripadvisor, LekkeSlaap or Hyperli for great getaway deals. You could even do day trips such as hikes, picnics, a day at the beach and braais.