Christmas shopping on a budget

Posted Dec 17, 2019
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Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year; but it can also be the most expensive. If you’re relying on your student loan or sticking to a strict budget, Christmas present shopping can feel a little stressful. Luckily, we’ve got some great present ideas and tips that won’t break the bank this year.

Tips for sticking within budget

Budget may not be the word you want to hear; it’s often met with an eyeroll and a deep exhale. However, if you’re trying to keep Christmas cheap, it’s a word you’ll need to keep in mind. After Christmas party drinks and trips to the Christmas market, your budget might be looking a little strained for all the presents you want to buy.

Make a spreadsheet

Create a list of all the people you need to buy presents for. Whether it’s your Secret Santa or your Mum, make sure you include everyone so you can work out how much you can spend on each person. Once you’ve added everyone to your list, write the amount you’d like to spend on them and try to not exceed it. Google Sheets is a great app you can use on your phone to track your budget using a spreadsheet format.

Shopping online? Google a promo code for the website

If you’re shopping for your presents online, check Google to see if there is a promo code for the website, it could save you around 20% on the price of your purchase.

Christmas baking

Make your own presents

If you’ve got a big family or a ridiculous amount of people to buy presents for, it might be worth trying your hand at crafting or baking something for them. Hobbycraft have a whole section of their website dedicated to ‘Making Your Own Christmas’ – ranging from blank decorations to Cross Stitch. Even if it looks terrible, it’s the thought that counts right?

Christmas present ideas to suit every budget

It’s hard to think of creative or thoughtful Christmas presents for everyone on your list on a budget. From Game of Thrones fans to messy eaters, there’s something for everyone on our list. 

For cat lovers (and Harry Potter fans)  – Hairy Pawter cushion, £16.54, Red Bubble 

Hairy Pawter

Photo credit: Red Bubble 

For art enthusiasts - 34 Piece Sketching Set, £12.99, TK Maxx

For guitar players – Personalised Plectrums, £12, Not On The High Street

Personalised plectrums

Photo credit: Not On The High Street  

For the one who’s always losing their keys – Bluetooth Key Finder, £14.99, Chipolo

For dog lovers – Personalised pet portrait, £35.00, Etsy

Personalised dog pic

Photo credit: Etsy

For Game of Thrones fans - Game of Thrones Travel Poster Sets, £7.90, Etsy

For clean freaks – Hinch Yourself Happy, £9.99, TK Maxx

For messy eaters - The World’s Smallest Vacuum, £12, Urban Outfitters 

mini vacuum Photo credit: Etsy

For football fans Personalised Football Quiz Book, £19.99, Getting Personal  

For film fanatics - 100 Movies Scratch Off Poster, £11.99, Uncommon Goods

100 movies

Photo credit: Uncommon Goods

For cheese lovers - The Cheese Lover's Gift Box, £19.99, Not On The High Street

For beauty enthusiasts – Birchbox 3-month giftcard, £31.08, Birchbox 


Photo credit: Birchbox

For gym obsessives - Chocolate Dumbbells, £8.50, Not On The High Street 

For Friends fans - 'The One with the Ball' Game, £12.00, Argos


Photo credit: Argos

For their first Christmas – Personalised White Baby Grow, £14.99, Getting Personal 

For tea lovers - PG Tips personalised mug & tea set, £14.99, PG Tips, included 40 tea bags and 2 x personalised mugs

PG Tips

Photo credit: PG Tips

Bonus section: Christmas gifts for under £5

For Dinosaur fanatics – Dinosaur Hoop Earrings, £5, Etsy

For chocolate lovers – The Mini Christmas Chocolate Box, £5, Hotel Chocolat

Hotel Chocolat

Photo credit: Hotel Chocolat

For Star Wars fans - Wooden Star Wars Music Box, £4.59, Amazon

For spreadsheet obsessives - I Love Spreadsheets Mug, £3.99, Find Me A Gift


For wine drinkers Personalised Wine Glass Charms, £2.68, Etsy

If you’re still struggling to find the perfect, take a trip to Aldi and visit the middle isles, you’ll be sure to find lots of weird and wonderful Christmas gifts for under £10. Not in the festive spirit yet? Take a look at our blog on How to Feel Festive in Manchester.

Good luck and have a wonderful Christmas! 

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