Christmas is an expensive time of year. From the Christmas tree and other decorations to the food and extra bills, it can be a really difficult time for a lot of us during the holidays.
Of course, we are lucky if we have people around us who want to spend this time with us and who love us enough to celebrate this time together, however, having people to buy for can be very stressful.
Thankfully, this time of the year is about giving and caring, and although many of us tend to forget it, it does not have to be about money – no matter what those commercials tell you.
Taking the time to make a small or large gift can be such a great idea.
All that it will cost you is time and effort, and it is bound to leave those around you feeling ecstatic knowing how much effort you re willing to put into their gifts.
With that in mind, check out our list of some of the best gifts that you can make or buy for very little money to ensure that everyone that you love feels spoiled this year!
What Can You Give Someone for Free?
Thankfully, great gifts do not have to cost an arm and a leg.
In fact, there are plenty of free or very low-cost gift ideas that can be made or bought by anyone.
Here are a few of the best thoughtful gifts that will not cost you much, or indeed anything at all.
Edible Gifts / Food Gifts
One of the best ways to create Christmas gifts that next to nothing – and can be ideal for all your family members, co workers, friends – is food.
Taking the time to make chocolate chip cookies, hot sauce, hot chocolate mix, preserves and more can really make a difference.
You can present the food nicely by putting them in nice jars, bowls, plating, etc. You can even make them extra special by adding Christmas ribbons, stickers, and a nice note.
It should not cost you much to make with what’s in the pantry – and again, why not bake in batches to ensure you have enough handmade gifts for everybody?
Who doesn’t love nice smelling bath salts or body scrubs? Despite the amount that many of us tend to spend on this kind of thing, many bath and spa treatments can actually be homemade super cheap.
Bath salts alone take very little time to make, as do body scrubs, lip scrubs, bath bombs, soap, etc.
Although bath bombs and soap can sometimes require specific ingredients that will need to be purchased from speciality retailers, bath salts and scrubs can be very easy to put together – and can even be made with ingredients that you have at home.
You will be able to find specific recipes and even tutorials online to ensure that your bath and homemade spa treatments are safe to use and as nice-smelling as possible for your friends and family.
Homemade Memory Gifts
Some of the best presents that we receive during our lives are gifts that have taken some genuine thought and time.
They usually mean the most to us as they show us just how much someone really cares about us.
That is why homemade memory presents are great gift ideas.
Consider making your loved ones a custom playlist full of their favourite music and songs that mean something to the both of you.
Or, you could create a coupon book full of things that you could do for them or enjoy together.
Other meaningful gifts can include photo albums and frames with a personalized note, books with annotations, homemade recipe cards, videos and more.
The personal touch to any Christmas gift really can go a long way, regardless of family member – and you don’t even have to spend money on the best homemade gifts.
If you have big, creative ideas and are capable of putting them into physical form, then go ahead!
Whether your gift is making music, artwork, photos, writing, knitting, sewing, or arts and crafts, then you can easily create something special for those around you.
Chances are that whatever you make will be a perfect gift because it came from you – and you took the time to do it.
Even if you are not very creatively inclined, there are still plenty of creative gifts that you can make for them such as a homemade board game, a scavenger hunt, etc.
Add your own personal touch to the gifts and make every game night a night to remember.
The holiday season should be all about spending time playing daft games – and less about Christmas shopping.
How Do You Give a Gift with No Money?
If you are planning on giving Christmas gifts without spending a lot of money, you may feel a little awkward.
No one wants to have to head to the dollar store to find meaningful gifts, but times are tight!
If you are buying for your loved ones, then the chances are that they will know a little about your financial situation.
Although they may not know any grisly details, they may know that you are struggling, or at least that you are working on a tight budget.
You can easily let them know that in order to save money this year, you will be taking the time to make them a gift.
They will likely be happy with the idea that you are making them something (as many of us prefer homemade gifts to bought ones anyway), and even if they would prefer monetary value gifts, they will likely understand and only want what is best for you.
If, on the other hand, your other family members, co-workers or others do not know that you do not have the extra money to spare this holiday season, then you do not have to justify yourself at all.
You can easily make them nice handmade gifts and take the time to write them a special note.
You do not need to spend money on those who do not know you well enough to understand your situation, and any kind of gift, handmade or not, is kind and thoughtful.
On a completely different note, why not start early and start giving back to the community?
You could help out a soup kitchen over the festive period if you are all out of gift ideas, and just want to do some genuine good.
Sometimes it can feel impossible to find the perfect gift for the ones that we love, especially when money is tight.
Not all of us can afford gifts every year, especially not for every family member, co-worker, friend, etc. Read in detail about who should you buy Christmas gifts for?
So, instead of buying gifts, it is essential to know that you do not have to worry about being a huge hit during the holiday season.
Any gift, even free ones, go a long way with the ones around us, as they show them how much care and respect we have for them.
As you can see, there are plenty of fun, lovely ideas that only require spending time and effort as opposed to money.
Of course, there are plenty of alternative Christmas gifts that do not cost a lot of money that can be an excellent idea for anyone such as a gift card, chocolates, and more.
With all of these gift ideas, you are bound to have a great Christmas and help those around you to have a great one too!