With the year we’ve had, it’s definitely something we all need to look forward to, even if we know Christmas might be a little different this year.
Card Smart is our content series, in partnership with Barclaycard, which aims to help you get more confident with using your credit card.
In this edition we want to show you how your credit card can help you spend smarter this festive period.
How can I manage my spending over Christmas?
It can be tempting to splurge at Christmas time, but a little bit of planning and a budget you can stick to could make all the difference.
There are also lots of small changes you can make which will make your Christmas more affordable.
Here are a few tips and ideas to help you plan ahead…
- Organise a Secret Santa with your friends or family and set a small budget. The smaller the budget, the funnier the novelty gifts can be. Plus, it’s a fun chance to bond while guessing who bought what.
- Keep track of your Christmas spending on your banking app and keep hold of the receipts in one place. You can also use free text or email alerts to keep on top of your budget. For example, an alert can give you a heads up when you’re close to reaching an account balance or spending limit of your choosing.
- Food, glorious festive food – it doesn’t have to be expensive just because it’s Christmas. Consider shopping at discount supermarkets to make your money go even further. If you’d prefer to do an online shop, try swapping brand name goods for own-brand options – your guests will never know the difference!
- Try getting crafty by making homemade gifts such as gingerbread men, snowglobes, candles or painted personalised mugs. The personal touch makes your gift extra special and help you save some money too.
We recently wrote an article all about setting and sticking to a budget, and you can read it here.
How does my credit card have my back?
Using a credit card to buy your Christmas pressies could come in handy to protect your purchases, giving you extra peace of mind if something goes wrong.
When you use a credit card to make purchases, you’ll get the added protection of Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.*
So if you make a purchase between £100-£30,000 and your goods are proven to be faulty, not delivered, you were given misleading information or the supplier breaches their contract with you, you could be entitled to compensation or a refund.
*Section 75 is standard on all UK credit cards and applies in certain circumstances. T&C’s apply.
Heading to the shops after lockdown?
Many of us are now shopping online, however some of our readers may be planning to head to the shops after lockdown, for some last minute Christmas shopping.
You may have seen more and more shops asking for contactless payment as an alternative to cash.
You can use it to pay for purchases up to £45, wherever you see the contactless symbol, so it’s handy for those who are planning to head out to the shops in December.
Note: sometimes, you might not be able to make a contactless payment with your card, or you may have to enter your PIN. For example, you’ll have to enter your card’s PIN to make an in-store payment for the first time, before you can use contactless.
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