Holiday Gift-Giving on a Student Budget
The dropping temperature is a surefire sign of the start of the holiday season. But while December is “the most wonderful time of the year”, it can also be the most stressful! It’s often difficult to dole out the holiday cheer when you’re saving up for college or have no time for a part-time job.
If you’re feeling the pressure to splurge on lavish gifts for everyone you know, remember that sometimes it really is just the thought that counts. In fact, something not so expensive but truly heartfelt can make for a better present overall. To ensure you’re not left completely broke by the time New Year’s rolls around, consider some of these student-budget-friendly holiday gift ideas.
Baking. Dig out your grandmother’s secret recipes (or find some online) and spend a day making a few types of cookies, bars or candies. Then wrap them up in a basket and give them away! Not only is this gift especially sweet (in more ways than one), it’s practically no-fail. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love holiday treats?
Crafts. Forget kindergarten macaroni art! You’d be surprised at how many incredibly creative gift ideas are out there—all you have to do is conduct a quick search online. Chances are, the materials for your next DIY project can all be found at your local art store. Some examples of cute and crafty gift ideas are Sharpie mugs, notebooks, bracelets, and even hand-made cosmetics.
Stocking stuffers. A collection of small knick-knacks is not only an affordable gift option, it’s perfect for situations when you just don’t know what the recipient will like. Instead of one big present, opt for an assortment of inexpensive stocking stuffers: chocolates, lip-gloss, gel pens, soaps, mints, etc. Then find an extra-large holiday stocking and tuck all of your little presents inside!
IOU’s. Really strapped for cash? The tried-and-true coupon book is your best bet. Come up with some ideas for fun things to do with your gift recipient: a home-cooked dinner for two, a foreign film screening, a vintage-store adventure and anything else you can think of. Then the next time you both have nothing to do, your recipient can cash in one of the coupons for an awesome day together (just make sure you’re doing all the planning, so it really feels like a gift).
Your meager student wallet doesn’t have to spoil your holiday season. Remember, the important thing is that you spend time with your loved ones and that the gifts you give them are more than just the price tag—they really come from the heart. Happy holidays, and happy hunting!