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$100 Holiday Gift Budget

Our debt counselors know that debt can feel like a weight, especially during the holiday season. If you are careful, a $100 can go a long way. Learn how to budget and make the most of a $100 holiday gift budget.

Stay on track with debt management with a holiday gift budget.

Stay on track with debt management with a holiday gift budget.

Making the Most of Your Holiday Gift Budget

Are you drowning in debt? It may feel overwhelming to be unable to participate in gift giving while fighting your debt. That’s where the $100-holiday gift budget comes into play. Most likely, you can find $100 in your budget without too much struggle. Let’s learn how it works.

Rules of the $100 Holiday Gift Budget

To make the most of your gifting experience, there are a few simple rules to follow.

  1. Only take money from the budget that won’t compromise your debt reduction efforts, like entertainment or clothing.
  2. Make a plan before buying anything. Use this Holiday Shopping Checklist to get all the details right.
  3. Use cash for all your purchases. Once the cash is gone, you are done shopping.
  4. Divide the $100 between the number of people you are buying for. If you have 5 people in mind, they each get $20 (including taxes and wrapping!). You can distribute the money however you need, but you cannot go over the $100 total.

Holiday Gift Budget Ideas

Now that you know the rules, let’s think through some ideas for possible gifts.

  • Scarf & hat set
  • Movie basket- DVD, popcorn, candy, etc.
  • Books
  • Kitchen gadgets
  • CD’s or iTunes gift card
  • Throw blanket
  • T-shirt (band, sports, movie)
  • Simple jewelry
  • DIY project
  • Reusable water bottle
  • French press coffee maker
  • Cosmetics and lotions
  • Calendar
  • DIY photography with frame
  • Cookies in a holiday tin
  • Movie date

Thrifty Tips for Buying Christmas Gifts

$100 sounds nice, but if your holiday gift budget needs to carry 10 people, you have to do everything you can to save money. Checking out thrift stores regularly is one way to find great deals on unique items. Similarly, going to yard sales and estate sales can bring the same kind of luck. If you want to go to retail stores, definitely keep an eye on the clearance section and shop sales, like Black Friday.

If you want to stay home and shop, the Internet is full of interesting and affordable options. Etsy, eBay, and Craigslist can be the perfect way to score some of your Christmas gifts.

Finally, you can split the cost of a few gifts with a friend or sibling. This way, the person gets a nicer gift and you can still manage your holiday gift budget.

If you’re struggling to pay off debt, ACCC can help. Schedule a free credit counseling session with us today. 


Michelle is a regular contributor to Talking Cents. She has taken several financial courses on debt management and is ready to circulate what she has learned from them as well as lessons from her own life- family to DIY projects to student loan debt.

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