Here are a few tips:
1. Try not get into further debt
As much as possible, stay far away from debt. This means not relying on your credit card or short-term loans from banks.
Eunice Sibiya, the head of consumer education at FNB, asks: “Is it worth putting it on your credit card? For 12 or 24 months — what interest rate are you charged, do you even know? So come the term, 12 or 24 months later, how much would you have paid in total for the item?”
— SiphoSihle👑 (@SihleTumani) January 2, 2018
2. Carpool or take public transport
If you’re going to the same work place or even area, carpool. This reduces each person’s travel costs and saves on your pocket. If your workplace is accessible via public transport, consider this option too, as it may be cheaper.
3. Eat at home
Dining out can be expensive, especially if you’re already cash-strapped. Cook at home. Buying ingredients and whipping up your own dish can be way cheaperm and it forces you to be a bit creative. If you and your friends can host basic dinners on rotation, consider that option as well.
4. Cash in on your rewards
Cash in on your customer rewards. If you have points on a retail card that can be converted for cash or that can offer you a small discount when transacting, use them. Be on the lookout as well for specials and discounts on things you need at various shops.
5. Self-imposed house arrest
Sibiya told HuffPost that the easiest way to be tempted to spend money you don’t have is to go to places that encourage spending. So staying at home may be the safest option this month. She admits that this may seem a bit dramatic, but without the temptation of malls or restaurants, it is unlikely that you will be able to spend compulsively.
Sibiya cautions, however, that consumers should do their best to avoid being in this position every January. This can be avoided through proper planning, budgeting and a great deal of discipline through the festive season.