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Holidays Aren't An Excuse to Go Into Debt


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    I used to spend money like crazy during the holidays, never wanting to make my loved ones think that I was a cheapskate or didn't "care" about them. It was far more a reflection of where I was personally than anything else and was something that took me years to realize that going into debt in order to make someone else "happy" wasn't really the smartest idea, especially since my loved ones cared more about me simply being around for the holidays than any material item I got for them. It also was something that took me years to pay off.

    Now for the holidays I set a budget and stick to it. My wife and I force ourselves to get creative by setting a maximum budget of $100 each and then set a budget for the rest of our friends and family. We long ago changed how we think about the holidays and focus far more on the family part than the gift part.

    I'm certainly not trying to criticize anyone who enjoys going all out for the holidays, but I do hope that those who do aren't going into debt to do so. So if you use your credit card to buy gifts I hope you stick with a limit that you'll be able to pay off either all or most of it in a set period of time.

    What kind of gift giver are you? Do you tend to spend a lot of money (either in cash or on your credit card) on gifts or do you set a budget and try to stick with it? I used to be the former, but now I'm the latter.

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    Old Sport Wrote:

    What kind of gift giver are you? Do you tend to spend a lot of money (either in cash or on your credit card) on gifts or do you set a budget and try to stick with it? I used to be the former, but now I'm the latter.

    Great thread and question. I'm still very much the former, although I've changed a bit as well. I'm a gift giver in general, so I find it kind of hard to no over spend or go into some debt during the holidays.

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    I can't stand it when I hear that people go into debt, let alone going into debt to buy things for others. It's just not worth it. I understand trying to let people know you care about them with a gift, but it's just not the right way to go.

    Also, if someone is wanting to stick to a budget for gift giving between two people it's most definitely important for that person to say something. It's never bad to mention wanting to stick to a budget.