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Last week, you established your budget. This week it’s all about getting your calendar organized and making your holiday plans official. It can feel overwhelming with so many parties to attend, people to see and gifts to shop for. But at the end of the day, it’s all good stuff and with a little advance planning, you can enjoy it to the fullest.
Plan your holiday schedule
Procrastinating the holidays not only adds stress, but it leaves less time to enjoy the process. This week, create a calendar and start scheduling holiday activities. Don’t save everything for December; pencil in plans for this month. Include social events as well as progress goals.
- Create a calendar system for the holidays. Color code (whether it’s a digital or hard copy calendar) so you can see everything holiday related at a glance.
- Add personal holiday deadlines to your calendar – like “house 100% decorated” or “presents all wrapped” or “grocery shopping done.”
- Block out time to go shopping early in the season. Add major sale events to your calendar and plan shopping trips around those.
There are two tiers of holiday parties. The official events like Thanksgiving dinner, or the holiday work party, and then the unofficial events you choose like a Friendsgiving or a happy hour gift exchange with coworkers.
Everyone’s schedule will fill up fast, so if you want to plan something, now’s the time to get it on their calendar and yours.
- Initiate a group email/text/phone tree with family and friends to establish who’s hosting this year. In addition to time and place, set gift giving guidelines so you can start shopping.
- Send out a save-the-date for any event you plan to host or coordinate. Think beyond the traditional holiday meals to fun activities like a cookie swap, wrapping party, or brunch and shopping local with friends on Small Business Saturday (11/28).
Booking Holiday Travel
Have you been holding off on booking travel because you’re waiting for the price to go down? Unfortunately, that’s probably not going to happen at this point, especially on airfare. Book now or your gamble might backfire and you’ll be paying steep prices.
We love apps to help keep travel organized! Check out some of our favorite travel apps, plus a few more tips to stay sane while traveling.
- Book flights today before the price goes up even more. Of course, there are always exceptions, so you may want to check with a price predictor like Kayak or Hopper.
- Secure your rental car before the value cars sell out. Weekly discount rates typically start with 5-day rentals. Sometimes it can be cheaper to rent the car for longer than you need to qualify for this discount.
- Reserve your bed. If you plan to stay at a hotel, you’ll want to make reservations. If you plan to stay at a friend or family member’s house, make your plans known so you can score the guest bedroom and save the couch for the procrastinators.
How is your holiday planning coming along? Don’t forget to sign up for the newsletter, share with a friend who might need a nudge, and leave a comment below to share your progress!