I'm a thrifty mum – here's the easy way I save a grand for Christmas each year without even noticing | The Sun

IT'S fun while it lasts, but once Christmas and the festive season is over we're all left feeling pretty skint.

It happens every year… But what if it didn't have to be that way and there was an easy way to save over a grand ahead of next Christmas without even really noticing?

Well there may be a solution.

Mum-of-one Francesca Henry, 33, runs The Money Fox, and shares her cost-cutting tips on her Instagram page.

She knows firsthand what it's like to struggle with money, after she found herself in debt while on maternity leave with her daughter, now 11.

Set yourself a challenge

The technique she recommends trying in order to save is the weekly savings challenge.


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She says: "I tried this myself a few years ago.

"The aim of the 52 week challenge is to increase your savings by £1 a week.

"So you save £1 in week one, £2 in week two and so on.

"By the end of the 52 weeks you will have £1,378 – just in time for Christmas."

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Simple and effective

As it's a gradual increase, it will feel like less of a strain on your finances.

Francesca adds: "It's effective because you don't really realise how much you are saving, so it makes it easier.

"It also makes finances more 'fun', as it makes it feel like a game, which means we are more likely to engage in it.

"You could pop the cash into an envelope, or create a separate savings account that you move the money across into.

"It depends what you think would work better for you.

"The benefit of this is you're able to save £1000 by Christmas, and you don't have the panic of stumping up a lump sum of cash all at once for Xmas presents, which can relieve a lot of the pressure."

Takeaway tip

If you want to take it a step further, there are also other ways to make savings all year round too.

You could also cut out takeaways to aid your saving ability.

Francesca adds: "ONS found that the average UK household spends £1,628 on restaurants and takeaways each year.

"So, every time you fancy a takeaway, simply put the money you would have spent into savings and see what you're left with at the end of the year!"

Francesca recommends always using cashback when you are buying something online.

She says: "There are sites such as Honey, Quidco, Topcashback – you are essentially getting money back on something you are buying anyway, with little effort – it's a win-win!"

Cancel culture

Also, you can threaten to cancel your TV or internet package to see if they offer you any deals to try and make you stay.

Francesca says: "There are certain discounts that they only have access to if you are cancelling, as they want to make sure you stay with them, even if it's for less money.

"Look on price comparison sites to see if you can find something better elsewhere.

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"If you do switch, make sure you use a cashback site.

"When I switched my TV package, I got a free item which I later sold on for £100."

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