Article | December 20, 2022

The 4 Tools You Need to Manage Your Holiday Finances

Safety & Protection, Budget & Save

Family embracing while window shopping

Holiday shopping is part of the seasonal fun for many people, however, it’s very important to make sure your finances stay in peppermint condition while you’re out decking the halls.

On top of gifts and stocking stuffers, families make travel arrangements, buy seasonal decorations and attire, and so much more to celebrate the festivities. It’s no wonder that 31% of Americans call the holidays “frantic” and filled with “festive stress.”

Even as households deal with the challenges created by inflation, 74% of Americans some say they plan to spend the same amount (or possibly more) this year than they did in previous holiday seasons. 

We’re here for you as you plan and manage the full calendar of holiday season events. We’ve put together a list of some of our favorite financial tools you can use to make sure your finances stay as sweet as a sugar cookie this holiday season.

1. Balance alerts to keep track of your money 
The holidays are a magical time of year, and the last thing you want is a bah-humbug to dampen the festive mood.  Scammers are the original Scrooge and are looking for ways to take advantage of distracted shoppers. 

Setting up alerts can give you an added layer of protection, so you know right away if someone tries to access your account or if a transaction is made without your approval. You can set specific alerts for criteria of your choosing and use them to keep a tight bow on your holiday shopping. For example, you can receive alerts: 

  • When your balance drops below a specific threshold
  • When your spending in a certain category exceeds the totals you’ve set
  • When specific transactions post to your account (especially helpful for big-ticket items like rent, car payments, or that new iPad you’re buying as a gift!)

2. More Ways to Pay 
You’ve seen those long lines at the registers during the holiday season. Everyone decides they need pumpkin pie, eggnog, and wrapping paper all at the same time – and the queues can become outrageous!

You can dash through the checkout lines quickly and securely when you use contactless payments. Adding your Golden 1 credit card or debit card to your mobile wallet makes it a breeze to make purchases with just a tap of your phone. Your fellow shoppers behind you will be filled with jolly!

Ready to set it up? Watch this video to seamlessly add your cards to your phone’s mobile wallet.

3. Rewarding card options 
Check your wallet once, check it twice - do you have Golden 1's Member Cash Rewards+ card? Choosing the right credit card to make your purchases can give you a little extra flexibility.

With the Member Cash Rewards+ credit card you’ll get cash back on all your purchases, with higher cash back percentages for gas (4%), groceries (3%), and restaurants (3%). Using this card for your holiday expenditures can make a lot of sense, whether you’re hosting the holiday meal or taking a road trip to toast with loved ones.

4. A Tool to Start Saving for Next Year
Every holiday season, you probably make resolutions about how you want to manage your finances for the following year. What if you could get started making those plans a reality now?

You can set up a Savings account that’s specifically focused on helping you plan for the next holiday season. Set up a recurring transfer to a Santa Saver account or earmark a certain percentage to be deducted from each paycheck.

By taking these steps, you can make the saving process automatic. When next November arrives, you’ll have a fully funded holiday savings to deck the halls with!

Research tells us that people are happier on or around the holidays, even though they may be busier or more stressed. There's just something about that holiday magic – just thinking about twinkling holiday lights and time spent with loved ones makes us smile and eagerly anticipate the festive season.

This year, as you plan to get the most from your holiday season, we hope these money management resources help you worry less and be more present with the ones you love.