Budgeting can be difficult throughout the year, but the holidays pose a particularly tempting time to go overboard with spending. For those committed to staying on or under budget this holiday season, there are a few simple ways to make sure you are controlling your credit card spending.

Budgeting Tips for the Holidays
Budgeting Tips for the Holidays

Creating a budget is the first step. By sitting down and budgeting out all the things you need to spend money on, you can set goals that can be your spending guide.

“Start the holiday shopping season by making a list of all the things you are likely to spend money on. These can include things like gifts, decor, cards, postage, food and clothing,” said Elizabeth Kiss, Purdue Extension family resource management specialist. “It’s important to then evaluate how much money you have to spend and the likely cost of the items on your list. The key is to create a budget and stick to it.”

Another budgeting tip is to avoid using your credit card unless it is necessary. By only using it for major purchases, you can really reduce how much your bills will be and you will have a better chance of making your credit card payments on time.

“The first step to avoiding excessive credit card debt is to remember not to charge anything that will be gone before it’s paid off, such as fast food or gas,” Kiss says. “Another important tip is to have a plan. Set limits and track actual spending by using only one credit card and by keeping a spending log and all receipts in one place.”

With Shoeboxed.com, you can keep all your receipts for both credit card and cash purchases, as well as any other receipts all in one place. In this way, Shoeboxed helps with budgeting because it keeps everything in one place.