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How much is your Christmas budget?

(82 Posts)
DrSausagedog Sat 17-Oct-15 08:57:35

I've decided to sit down and try to plan a rough Christmas budget later today, to hopefully keep me a bit on track with how much we spend over Christmas.

So far, I have already bought tickets to quite a few Christmas activities and days out so need to tot the total cost of those up, plus make a breakdown for gifts for everyone, Christmas Day food, drink, crackers etc as we have both sides of the family round, as well as other things such as any new decorations as its the small things that add up. Have I forgotten any other important spending categories?

Out of interest, does anyone else keep track in a similar way or has started a budget yet? I'd be very interested if anyone is happy to share and am happy to share mine later when it's completed.

Palomb Sat 17-Oct-15 09:01:23

I dread to think..

Fuel for all the extra travelling
Something nice to wear
.. It all adds up!

I made my Christmas cake yesterday, there's £20 gone already and I haven't even thought about icing it.

Prettyinblue Sat 17-Oct-15 09:27:35

I tried to sort out a budget as we are a bit skint this year.
Our 4 kids @ £60 each for stocking and presents (by from car boots mainly)
4 nephew/nieces @ £10 each
DH and Me @ £10 limit
Secret Santa with adults in family £25

Food - just us so about £20 as it will be a roast dinner
Will make decorations and use old ones from last year. Bought crackers cheap last January.

What is a bit of a killer is all the kids parties/nights out/visits to father Xmas usually adds up to about £150! But prefer to spend money on making memories than stuff.

So it will add up to about £500 which we don't have, so will have to cut back on the going out bit.

chanie44 Sat 17-Oct-15 09:38:39


IHaveBrilloHair Sat 17-Oct-15 09:40:42

Around £350.
That's food and gifts for 14yr old dd and me.

NickNacks Sat 17-Oct-15 09:42:57

About £1500 all in. We're hosting this year, dc main presents are bought but large extended family need to be sorted.

chanie44 Sat 17-Oct-15 10:10:39

Sorry - not sure what happened with my post up thread:

Presents: around £500, but I we have lots of people to buy for. I bargain hunt, so I spend less and the total has a higher rrp (if you believe the rrp in the first place). I budget about £20 per person and aim to spend £10-£15, if I can, so the spend is under £300.

Food - we go to family for dinner so we don't have to buy too much extra, other than factoring in the fact the children aren't at school/nursery and we have to get more food in. We probably spend an extra £50 over the two week period. I've started to stock up on offers now, which I put away until Xmas.

Xmas decorations - we buy a real tree which is about £50. We use the se decorations but may spend about £10 on a couple of new ones.

Wrapping -under £10. We like seeing lots of different colours under the tree, so we buy lots of cheap rolls.

Outings - we go to see Father Christmas which is about £20. Our other outings are usually really cheap and I hunt out events in local newspapers which are often free.

colleysmill Sat 17-Oct-15 10:34:57

One big trip to see FC at local little adventure park around 50 quid plus spending money/food/petrol

Christmas eve afternoon we usually go to the village pub for drinks before carols on the village green - amount depends how merry we are!

Christmas dinner - split between those coming - everyone brings a course or drinks so one person pays for meat, we do main course veg and sundries, my dsis usually does pudding, anyone else brings wine or beer. I usually like a bit of port with my cheese and biscuits so we get that. I also tend to do buffet style tea but not masses.

Presents - we only buy for direct relations children (usually prearranged budget of 25 quid or around that mark) so two for us.
Dh and I usually about 50quid and our dc about 100 although this year I am struggling for ideas so probably will be less than that.
2 Parents at 30 quid each (although mil usually compiles a very expensive list - whole other thread though!)
I usually get something for my ddad friend/companion who joins us (she's our adopted grandma) and 25 quid on my dsis and bil.
We don't buy for sil (jointly agreed) but we often send a bottle of homemade wine.
I do a little Christmas food hamper for my grandma but she's not been well recently so might have to scrap that idea.

Adding that up its more than I thought - about 500 but I do tend to spread the cost over the year so I don't notice it as much

Shinyshoes2 Sat 17-Oct-15 10:37:05

About £1500 to cover everything / everyone
Mum and her husband
3 nephews
1 neice
5 work colleagues

PjDay Sat 17-Oct-15 11:15:11

I am scared to begin writing this down...

Presents - including stockings.
DS £400 (only more than DD1 as in adult shoes/clothes so more expensive), DD1 £300, DD2 £200 (She is 4).
DH and I £50 each for stockings and we book a weekend away together instead of a big gift we don't need.
Parents and grandparents (6) - £300
Siblings/nieces and nephews (9) - £270
Friends DC's (5) - £50
Teachers (2), TA's (4), Guide leaders (3), Voluntary sport coach's (3) - £70
Work secret santa x 2 - £20
= £1710

Decorations -
We have plenty and a good fake tree so only one new dec per child - £15
Fresh flowers and extra candles - £50
= £65

Food and drink - we are hosting this year.
I dread to imagine, there are 9 for Christmas day and 14 for boxing day - around £400

Days/ nights out -
Kids: Cinema - £50, Father Christmas - £45, Sledging - £60, Parties/disco's £25, Panto £110, Christmas market, lights, ice skating £70.
DH and I: Works nights out - £100.
All plus meals, drinks, petrol, essential coffee to keep going etc.
= £900

Christmas clothes - £?

A horrifying total of around £3500 fblush

Loki17 Sat 17-Oct-15 11:25:14

Hopefully, around £500 all in. DD is only 4 so I can get her a decent pile and stocking for £150, the bargain thread really helps there! Grandparents, nieces, nephews and wider family can be done for about £200. Christmas eve box and trips to see Santa/days out costs about £50. Food and drink comes in at an additional £100. Not cheap, but affordable. Although I spend what I want to spend and have spent less in previous years when money has been tighter.

Paperblank Sat 17-Oct-15 18:54:30


We save up over 10 months and that pays for the lot. All food, presents, a couple of nights out, tree and any new/replacement decorations.

As a general rule we don't tend to spend that amount so we chuck the remainder in the "project x" account so that ends up with a little windfall at the start of every year

newtonupontheheath Sat 17-Oct-15 19:04:35

This year I've done £550 park vouchers:
£200 Amazon
£100 m&s (food & drink)
£100 high street (clothes & christmas decs)
£100 prepaid MasterCard.

It was £55 for 10 months, goes out with all my other standing orders on pay day.
Spent the MasterCard at Argos for a jumperoo for ds2 and some other bits, then when he gets money from family, we will say they were from them and save the money for us.

We won't spend the whole m&s on us and last year I got teachers with the extra amount when they did their special offers on boxes of biscuits etc.

Then I add to a wish list through out the year on Amazon and one day in November go an buy for ds1 and DD. I like a bargain but it doesn't have to be the lowest price (helps if it is!)

Any days out come out of our "normal" day out budget and anything special, we use money from grandparents as they usually get lots and we don't want more "stuff"

serin Sat 17-Oct-15 20:42:46

It's a funny one this year, eldest is at university now and that has really eaten into our household budget. We will probably spend around £150 on her.

DS1 is going on a school ski trip (£800) which he agreed would have to also be his Christmas present. We will probably buy him some ski bits to unwrap.

DS2 Has written a Christmas spreadsheet!! hmm It contains mostly computer bits and pieces, probably aim to spend around £200-£300

With food and presents for other family we are hoping to spend around £700 which will be our cheapest ever.

joewig Sat 17-Oct-15 20:57:00

I don't keep track, I buy throughout the year so it's not a big chunk in one go, I expect it's far higher than I'd estimate but I don't miss it as it's paid for through the year. I bought some bits in the sales in January and on Amazon Prime day and I'll buy some more gifts as deals come up in the next few months. Decorations are just reused every year and we've got a hoard of cards/wrap/crackers from previous sales.

We go to family for dinner so me and my siblings all put in a bit of money and I usually bring some treats. DC are too old for Father Christmas but we usually go to the theatre and/or Imax cinema for a treat. Don't usually buy Christmas clothes but just wear one of the smarter outfits from our normal wardrobe. I'd guess we spend around £700ish but don't put money aside for it specially.

Isitchristmasyet4 Sat 17-Oct-15 21:07:24

i am amazed at how cheap you can do xmas?? do you do this every year?

NotSoDesperateHousewife Sat 17-Oct-15 21:08:36

About £1000 all in for 4 kids, extended family and days out/food.

FullSwearJar Sat 17-Oct-15 21:14:43

I budget for presents but don't include Christmas socialising such as work nights out or family entertainment like pantos. Those extras just come out of normal monthly spend.

I think I'll probably spend about £150-200 on my two DC, combined not each. We haven't quite decided on what they're getting yet though so not sure. Probably another £300-400 on presents for friends and family. We don't usually entertain at home over Christmas so our food bill isn't much higher than usual, it's only a few extras over 3 days, probably an extra £50 max.

Probably £700 max

Lightbulbon Sat 17-Oct-15 21:16:28

In my head our budget is £500 but that's a number plucked from random. I've never actually added it up. too scared

My priority is a nice meal with good quality food & drinks in a very Christmassy room.

I won't have to buy new decorations this year but what we've built up probably cost £300.

Food: last year's turkey was £80, total food bill will be £300+ for 5/6 adults and 2 dcs. Visitors will contribute drinks/champagne and probably a dessert/snacks/crackers.

Only presents are for gps, each other & dcs. Adults c. &20, dcs it's more about what they have asked for than a budget but apart from the big years when they got the one offs of X box/iPad I'd limit to c. £50.

Works Xmas night out will prob be £100.

shutupanddance Sat 17-Oct-15 21:17:57

Around £1,500

DrSausagedog Sat 17-Oct-15 21:23:58

Thanks for all your replies.

I've looked up some figures and set up an Excel sheet now.

The activities we have booked including Santa train, breakfast with Santa and a panto total £95.

We are also going on a Christmas markets trip in Europe in December, I estimate we will spend up to £700 all in for that, including 3 nights in a city apartment and one night in a cabin on the ferry.

Food and drink- DH is fortunate to get to bring home quite a few gifted bottles of wine etc from suppliers most Christmases, so I'll earmark £30 on top of that.

Food- I usually cook 2x large chickens instead of Turkey which is cheaper, and as I'm not a great cook keep the meal pretty simple with no starter, and Xmas pud and a trifle as dessert choices. MIL has offered to bring crackers. Then cold buffet items for the evening. So maybe £50 for Christmas Day food.

Gifts- for DD probably £50, have already bought her main gift which looks quite impressive (for her, anyway), plus some little bit for stocking etc. Its also her birthday soon after Christmas so I don't go overboard for that reason. DS's main gift has cost £60, it was a real bargain at less than half price, and will only spend approx another £20ish on his stocking and few other bits.

DH- I usually do him a stocking and then do similar to a PP with putting the money in lieu of a large gift towards a weekend away somewhere during the year and we really value the couple time together.

DM- approx £50, same for the in laws. Not many more family members and we have agreed a £20 limit each.

I've been buying gifts throughout the year which helps spread the cost.

Oh dear, adding all that up totals over £1000! Although if it wasn't for the 3 day break abroad it would be far less and we won't be going again after DD starts school next September.

RJnomaaaaaargh Sat 17-Oct-15 21:23:59

Oh god I don't even want to attempt to work it out confused

annandale Sat 17-Oct-15 21:25:51

Advent calendar £8
Cards and stamps £45
Wrap £5
School fair spend £30
Work party £30 this year I hope - was a lot more last year
Christmas appeal £25
Main presents for dh and ds £130
Christmas theatre trip £60
Stocking for ds £30 (I usually end up going over this)
Presents for nieces, nephews, godchildren etc £100
Tree £20
Decorations - try just to use ivy, holly, cards
Extra Christmas food/drink (ie. on top of usual food budget) 40
Fuel for Christmas travel £40

DS's birthday (close to Christmas) - present/party/fuel £150

Total is about £700. I don't have this. I've paid for some of it already, will have to spread it out as much as I can, stop thinking I can spend so much. Would skip the theatre trip but it's a present from the ILs, we only have to pay to get there but it's expensive to do that.

ObiWanCannoli Sat 17-Oct-15 21:35:13

Total Christmas gifts £500
Christmas food £100
Girls night out £50
Weekend away with dd £200
Santa trip £30
Other bits £50

So around £1000 - split over the year.

ohmyeyebettymartin Sat 17-Oct-15 21:43:25

I've put €300 aside. Just spent €45 ordering the Christmas tree and €15 on PJs for the kids. Maybe €50 on food for the day (DCs are small and won't eat much, we will cook a feast to last for days!) and a few small gifts from us. Family presents probably €100 or so in total. Advent calendar €9, Christmas circus will cost a bit (€50 or so? I've no idea any more) and visit to Father Christmas another €20ish (again can't remember).

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