1. Download the right mobile tools to keep you on track.

Android lovers need to check out the budgeting app, Christmas Gift List. With nearly 4,500 reviews and a four-star rating, this app works at helping you keep your holiday budget in check. Input individual gift-recipient budgets and present-purchasing notes.

If you have an Apple phone, you’re going to love Santa’s Bag. You can sort items you need to purchase by store and share lists with friends and family.

For entertainment budgeting, download my favorite app of all time – The Krazy Coupon Lady app 🙂 With it, you can create grocery lists—using money-saving coupons—to help keep your entertaining budget on track.

2. Shop on daily deal sites.

Daily deal sites like Groupon and Living Social are excellent resources for finding inexpensive gifts. The best thing about these sites is that you can stack coupon codes on top of already discounted prices!

For Living Social coupon codes, browse this listing. For Groupon coupon codes, look under “Coupons,” select “Stores,” and choose “Groupon” right on Groupon.com.


3. Start following your favorite retailers on social media.

A lot of companies share flash sales and specials to their social media followers first. “Like” your family’s favorite brands, and take advantage of deals as they come up in your newsfeed. Here are some of my favorite retailers to follow on Facebook:

Related: Get Your Groupon On: 10 Tips to Ensure a Successful Groupon Purchase

4. Buy and shop with discounted gift cards from Raise.com.

Buy discounted cards from sites like Raise.com and save up to 81% on their face value! When you pair this discount with sales and other promotions, you’ll be saving so much, you’ll have enough to buy yourself a little something for a job well done!


5. Begin earning cash back on your purchases.

I’ve been using rebate apps like Ibotta and Checkout 51 for nearly two years now and find huge satisfaction in watching my cash-back earnings grow throughout the year. The trick is to let your savings accumulate, and when the holidays come around, cash out to help with gift and entertaining expenses. Download these apps now, and make sure to check the available rebate offers before you make any purchases.


6. Use prepaid Visa and American Express cards.

If you’re going to use plastic for payments, leave your regular debit and credit cards at home. You’re less likely to overspend when your payment method has a spending limit.

Hint: Use Raise.com to find discounted prepaid gift cards.

Related: 5 Easy Gift Baskets You Can Make from Your Pantry

6 Easy Ways to Help Your Holiday Budget Now