holiday debt

How People End Up With Massive Holiday Debt

In 2021, more than a third of consumers spent more than they could afford, racking up over $1,200 in holiday debt on average. This year, many anticipate that Christmas debt will increase as COVID fears lessen and people return to their holiday festivities.

Massive holiday debt is usually built up from a combination of factors, not just one thing.

Keeping up with the Joneses has had a great effect on uncontrolled spending, but the holidays have also brought new pressure for lavish gift-giving. Let’s dive into the things people should avoid to stay on track financially this holiday season.

How People Get In Debt During The Holidays

1. Last-Minute Trips

Travel booked from Thanksgiving onward is significantly more expensive than trips planned in September or October. Deciding to visit family for Christmas or New Year’s last minute may sound exciting, but it could rack up quite a large travel bill.

From plane tickets to sold-out accommodation, last-minute trips should be avoided if you want to stay on track financially. Stick this month out at home and see if you can plan to visit around the Easter holidays instead.

2. Unplanned Shopping Trips

Black Friday and Cyber Monday sound like money-saving ideas, but these are marketing schemes that make consumers spend more than planned almost every year. If you tend to window shop or head to the mall when you’re bored, you’re much more likely to purchase something “on sale” without planning it. This gives you the false sensation that you’re saving money when really, you’re just spending it spontaneously.

3. Not Shopping With A List

Another huge blunder at the root of holiday debt is shopping without a firm list. Before you know it, you’ve added on five extra gifts and changed your initial gift ideas because of other deals or shiny objects that have caught your eye.

Do yourself and your wallet a favor and write out a thorough – yet short – shopping list before the holiday season. Check the prices online so you know more or less what your budget is.

Once you know what you’re buying, head straight to that department or section of the store to avoid the temptation of extra purchases.

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4. Buying Gifts For Everyone

Many people want to be generous during the holidays but being generous with money you don’t have in the first place will only result in Christmas debt. Your loved ones should understand and respect your financial priorities – and if they don’t, that’s their issue.

If presents are important to you and your family, stick to your immediate relatives (spouse and children) and arrange a group gift exchange for the rest. Coordinating a Secret Santa could ensure everyone gets together, gets a gift, and stays out of debt this year.

5. Hosting Holiday Parties

Hosting a Christmas Eve dinner, ugly sweater, or New Year’s party can be exciting for the guests. The host, on the other hand, usually has to prepare days in advance, buying everything from tons of food to decorations and entertainment. Sure, it’s fun, but is it worth the hefty price tag? Probably not.

Keep your holiday parties small or, even better, become a guest in place of a host this year instead.

What About When A Financial Emergency Strikes?

If you’re trying to keep your spending under control this winter, imagine your frustration when a home appliance breaks, your car starts sputtering, or you get an unexpected urgent bill in the mail. That’s where Georgia Auto Pawn, Inc. comes in.

If you have a state I.D., a lien-free title, and your vehicle handy, we can offer you up to $15,000 through a Georgia vehicle title pawn. Title pawns use your paid-off vehicle as collateral for a short-term loan, but you get to keep your car as usual so long as your payments are made on time.

If approved, you can get the money as soon as that same day or the next. The loan amount is determined by your needs and the state of your vehicle. You do not need a checking account, employment, or good credit to apply.

Avoid Extra Debt This Holiday Season

A title pawn from Georgia Auto Pawn, Inc. could help many Georgians avoid holiday debt this season. If you’re worried about Christmas debt and have an urgent bill on your hands, one of our representatives will gladly see if you qualify for hundreds or even thousands of dollars through a short-term title pawn. And we have title pawn locations throughout the state.

The holidays should be a time of family, gratitude, and love – not financial stress. Find the peace of mind you need this winter and reach out to us today to learn more.

Note: The content provided in this article is only for informational purposes, and you should contact your financial advisor about your specific financial situation.

Daniel Dewitt

Daniel Dewitt is a lifetime blogger with a finely-honed ability to break down, analyze, and interpret economic trends for the layman. He's fiercely invested in spreading financial literacy and helping everyday people gain the tools they need for their own economic success.