Don’t give in to a payday loan this Christmas

posted by in Budgeting

Christmas tree from paper

Avoid payday loans this Christmas

With Christmas coming soon are you tempted by a payday loan? You’ll not be the only one but you have to ask yourself: do you really need it?

We all know that Christmas can be the most expensive time of the year, we all want our families to have the best but it doesn’t have to lead to more lending, more debt and more stress.

‘Solutions’ like payday loans are quickly becoming people’s saving grace until the time they have to pay it back. That’s when the trouble starts.

Payday loans on the rise

Taking out a payday loan to fund Christmas can be very tempting. However we talk to people every day who have tried to use payday loans to solve their financial problems only to find out that they’ve actually made the situation much worse.

We’ve recently released statistics that show we’ve spoken to three times as many people struggling with multiple payday loans this year than we did in 2009.

We hear from 1000s of people every day how it feels to have to face up to unmanageable debt. Ask yourself, is it really worth taking out a short term loan?

That may sound all well and good but if you haven’t got any money for a merry Christmas what can you do?

  • If you find you’ve no money for gifts this year then it’s much better to scale back your plans rather than saddling yourself with payday loan debt
  • There are lots of great websites like moneysavingexpert.com or Netmums that can give you inspiration for free or cheap gift ideas, moneysaving tips, and support to help you through a tough Christmas
  • Look at making some gifts. Most people really appreciate the personal touch of something homemade
  • Have a chat with your family. I’m sure that they’ll understand, and remember that Christmas is not about the gifts and how much money you can spend. It’s about having a nice day and spending time with family and friends.

Christmas really doesn’t have to be about expensive presents and spending crazy money, so think long and hard before taking that payday loan.

Christmas 2013

Budgeting is not easy at the best of times, let alone when you’re in debt. If you’ve just started to budget for Christmas 2012 you probably won’t have much money allocated, but why not start planning for Christmas 2013 in January rather than scrabbling around for money in November?

  • A straightforward way to save for Christmas is by setting up an account with a catalogue company, and saving up through affordable weekly payments
  • Get a Christmas savings account with your bank or an easy bank account with a weekly or monthly standing order
  • Ask a trusted family member or friend to hold the money for you
  • Savers stamps from the supermarkets to help with the Christmas food shopping really work.

At Stepchange Debt Charity we know that this time of year is never easy, so if you’re worried about money or tempted to get extra credit to pay for a Merry Christmas, use our online debt advice tool Debt Remedy.

I've been working for StepChange Debt Charity as a debt advisor for the past seven years. I love doing my job and love talking to people. I am going to be honest - I hate budgeting but I do it because if I didn't I wouldn't have any money at the end of the month! Working for StepChange Debt Charity has helped me in many ways and I want to share my experiences and knowledge with other people.

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