We managed to keep our Christmas spending down to less than $450 and I was super proud of myself… until I read this stat:
In 2018, the average American spent $511 on gifts and gift cards. (Source Fortunly.com) $511? I understand the average household doesn’t have 4 kids but $511 seems low. The article mentioned the average American spends $123 on their spouse and, on the years we buy gifts for each other, that’s about spot on. But $511 overall? Is that accurate? What is your average spend per person?
Want to know the scariest part of all??? 22% of Americans believe their spending will leave them in debt. Hope that Playstation is worth it. Ugh. So dumb. I can say that because I’ve been there, I’ve bought gifts on credit cards I had no intention of paying off anytime in the near future. I paid so much ‘stupid tax’.
I think that number is inaccurate. Sure, maybe only 22% fessed up to putting gifts on credit cards but I think there are two more groups of people. The first group, they just don’t admit they put gifts on credit cards. The second group, they don’t have credit card debt, but they have other debt (school loans, car loans, etc.) and instead of paying down that debt, they bought gifts. No, I’m not saying to skip Christmas until you are debt free. I am saying your Christmases should be pretty tight while you are paying down debt. When we were in the thick of paying down debt, our Christmases were paltry but it helped us keep focus.
Put the Playstation back. Put the credit card back. It’s not worth it.
Beks is a full-time government employee who enjoys blogging late into the night after her four kids have gone to sleep. She’s been married to Chris, her college sweetheart, for 15 years. In 2017, after 3 long years working the Dave Ramsey Baby Steps, they paid off more than $70K and became debt free. When she’s not working or blogging, she’s exploring the great outdoors.