With less than eight weeks to go until Christmas (sorry we just HAD to mention it!) many of us are already thinking about what we need to buy ahead of the big day. Food shopping for the festive season can be a headache, but we’ve provided some useful tips to help you avoid a last minute trolley-dash, whilst making your hard-earned cash go further.

Compare

Let’s face it, the Christmas food shop can be the most expensive of the year and more often than not, we end up with a list longer than we’d like. Try a handy comparison website like MySupermarket to see where the best deals are for maximising your food budget. Simply type in your shopping list and the website will compare your shopping basket against the major supermarkets before telling you where your total overall shop will be cheapest. It also alerts you if you could save money by swapping to another item.

Stock up

Don’t be afraid to stockpile the non-perishable items well ahead of the big day. Spread the cost over a number of weeks to take advantage of any pre-Christmas offers and avoid that last minute panic the week before Christmas at the same time! Items such as crackers, cranberry sauce, and the all-important Christmas pudding can be bought well in advance – just try not to eat them too soon! 

Get a discount

There are many discount codes and vouchers available both online and in store, although it may take a bit of time to look for them. Check the free magazines you find in store, and cashback websites which can also be a great place to get money back from even your normal spending. It’s also worth asking your employer if they offer an employee benefits portal. You may be able to get a discount on your supermarket shop, but if not, there are plenty of other websites you can choose from – maybe for buying Christmas gifts. You could even consider putting the money you save towards your Christmas budget for next year!

Start saving for next year

Once the festive food has been bought (and if you’ve got the stomach for it!), start thinking about your Christmas budget for next year. If you can set aside a small monthly amount to save, even £25 a month from January – October could give you a £250 boost. Save as much as you can afford and it will take some of the strain off your pockets when Christmas rolls around next year!