10 Holiday Planning Tips to Make Things Smooth

As you can already tell, I’m really excited about the upcoming holiday season.  Although it’s only October, I have already started planning for Christmas.  I know that some people tend to get stressed out over the holidays, but that is simply because many people fail to plan for the holiday season. Planning is the key to saving time, money, and eliminating stress during the holiday season. Here are 10 holiday planning tips you can use.


  1. Gift Cards – Shopping often takes a great deal of time and effort. Browsing through shops and guessing about what people really want is challenging. It is much easier to find out what type of items someone likes. For example ask them if they like electronics, make up, outdoor camping equipment, or a specific department store.
  2. Plan Holiday Meals – Create a menu that revolves around family favorites. If there is a desire to try a few new recipes, test them out prior to the holiday arriving.
  3. Holiday Clothing – Purchase a few festive outfits in advance of the holiday season. This could be a holiday sweater, festive dress, or crisp shirt.
  4. Eating Out – Set aside part of the holiday budget to include enough money for eating out. This is the time of year when old friends or relatives may drop in and want to go out for drinks or dinner.
  5. Holiday Decorations and Cards – Decorate the house for the appropriate holiday before it arrives. Waiting until the last moment to get into the holiday spirit, can be very expensive. Holiday specific items are rarely on sale when trying to pick up things at the last possible moment.  The same advice goes for Christmas cards.  Shop early to find festive Christmas cards you will be proud to send out to your friends and family.
  6. Cleaning Services – Hire a housekeeping service to come help tidy the house during the holiday season. There are local reputable companies that can come and do laundry, dishes, vacuuming, clean bathrooms, and even deep cleaning tasks.
  7. Unexpected Visitors – Purchase additional drinks, hors d’oeuvres, and any type of quick snacks that can be prepared for unexpected visitors. Finger foods and drinks can help make a make shift party versus just sitting down in the main entertaining area. Prepare for overnight guests by freshening the sheets and towels in the guest bedroom. If there is no guest bedroom, have linens available for the couch and bath areas.
  8. Cash Reserves – Having a bit of additional cash during the holiday season, make it easier to budget for unplanned invitations. There may be an invitation to a fancy dinner. Bringing wine or food to an event can tap into other areas or the household budget, if not planned for in advance.
  9. Avoid Debt – Do not use credit cards as an attempt to provide gifts for family and friends. Leave department store credit cards at home during the holiday season.
  10. Shop after Christmas – The holiday season sales can be tantalizing. No matter what is on a personal shopping list, it can be purchased at a substantial discount after Christmas.
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There you have it.  Ten easy ways to prepare for the upcoming holiday season.

How do YOU plan for the holiday season?

I wrote this blog post while participating in the Storkie holiday blogging program. I received compensation for my participation. All opinions are 100% mine.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

About the author


Diane is a New Jersey-based writer and blogger. She is a wife and the mom of a 13-year old boy. Through her blog, she wants to inspire moms to find Zen in their lives while offering practical tips and other valuable information to help families deal with everyday issues. Contact her at dianenassy@gmail.com


  • Good food is certainly the priority one.. No matter how good the place or the resort is is. It would be worthless until I have some delicious food thrice a day.

  • I love the holiday season and rarely if ever feel stressed out about it. The whole idea of the holiday season is to get together with friends and family to share each other’s company and have a wonderful time. It shouldn’t be thought of as a burden, but rather a opportunity each year to renew personal connections with each other. Have a cheerful attitude and everything will work out fine. There’s no need to stress over gifts, parties, wardrobe etc. Just relax and enjoy! Even if one’s holiday schedule is busy, as you suggest in your article, early planning can alleviate most of the issues. Even shoppers who let things go to the last minute can buy a wide variety of gift cards at Walgreens and convenience stores like 7-11.

    • That is so true. I noticed that my grocery store also sells gift cards now.

10 Holiday Planning Tips to Make Things Smooth

by Diane time to read: 2 min