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A guide to saving smart during the silly season

With pre-holiday deadlines, work parties, Christmas drinks, end of year shenanigans, and your ever-growing to-do list; the last thing you want to do is plan how you’ll keep your savings on track.

So, we’ve come up with 5 easy ways to help you stay social this silly season and stick to your financial goals.

Merry Budget

We’re not about skipping out on anything, but instead making smart budgeting decisions up front so you know exactly how much money you have to play with when it comes to your ‘fun’ fund.

An easy way to stay on track is with our in-app tool, Free2Spend, which takes your savings goal (hello, 2019 winter getaway) into account, alongside all your fixed expenses like bills, rent and transport. Then, Free2Spend lets you know how much you have to spend each day and adjusts as you’re spending, so you can see how much you’ve spent on family gifting and how much you might have left for a treat yourself moment.

Make or bake

‘It’s the thought that counts’ truly comes to life when you make or bake presents for family and friends. Search Pinterest boards or Instagram for simple DIY’s like bath salts, handmade choccies and other treats, costing you much less than store-bought presents. Plus, they can be personalised for each person, so you’ll get bonus points for extra effort.

Become a fan of the plan

If you’re not into DIY, it’s essential to plan gifts rather than walking into a shopping centre with your card at the ready.

Start by setting a gifting budget for the year (again, Free2Spend can help with this). Next, write a list of who you need to buy for and what you’re getting them, then hit the shops. This will keep you on track and stop you from overspending.

Another tip is buying online - search the internet for the best deal (websites like ‘Lasoo’ can help you compare), then use Google Chrome extensions like ‘Honey’ at checkout to make sure you get the best discount codes available for your purchases.

Turn ‘going out’ into ‘getting out’  

Saving doesn’t mean staying home, just like catching up with friends doesn’t always have to be over dinner and drinks. With the weather warming up, get out and catch up over some fresh air. Instead of going to restaurants or bars, choose activities like park picnics where everyone brings a plate, BBQ potlucks or going for a walk or dip with friends followed by coffee.

Save on your style

You don’t need to break the bank with a brand-new outfit for every party. On trend pieces always pop up on sites like eBay and Gumtree and you could even consider renting a look from an online rental site.

No time to wait? Accessories can really change a look, so go for jewellery, shoes, bow ties and pocket squares to mix things up without maxing out your weekly budget.


No one wants to say no to a social event, but by wrangling silly season with some smart substitutes, you’ll be popping that champagne and doing your best to welcome the new year in the financial clear.

Wishing you and your loved ones a wonderful festive season from all of us at UBank!


The information contained in this article is of a general nature only. It doesn’t take account of any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, you should consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances and seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice.