CHRISTMAS: Some super saving ideas.
CHRISTMAS: Some super saving ideas. CTRPhotos

Top tips to keep on track this festive season

THE Christmas festive season can leave shoppers out of pocket and feeling like they have spent more time battling the crowds than relaxing with friends and loved ones.

It's no secret people tend to overspend during the holidays and monitoring Christmas spending and sticking to a budget will make it a more festive season for everyone.

Start the New Year debt free and enjoy the silly season by being smart with your money.

Here are four simple tricks to help enjoy the holiday season without breaking the bank.

Stick to a gift budget

Christmas is a wonderful time of year but not finances.

The festive season can be notoriously hard on budgets and post-Christmas credit card debt can make it difficult.

Make a budget and stick to and spend within your financial means. Establish a general spending cap or try to allocate s specific amount for each person.

Don't overbuy food

It great to have a turkey sandwich on Boxing Day but beware of buying too much Christmas food and get smart about how to use the leftovers.

Not only is it good for the pocket savings but the environment as well.

Start shopping now

The earlier the better with the Christmas shopping.

Buying something here and there every week leading up to the festivities will help to keep on track of finances and gifts.

It will help to avoid the last minute dreaded Christmas shopping rush and fighting through the crowds.

Save on wrapping paper

Purchase wrapping paper at discount stores or save gift bags through the year and recycle them.

Wrapping paper gets ripped up, thrown away and wasted.

It goes on clearance sales the next day and shoppers can buy it and put away for next Christmas.