How to survive the festive party season without breaking the bank

It’s the most wonderful (and expensive) time of the year, the pressure to spend and socialise can feel overwhelming.

December is here, the mince pie tasting is well and truly underway and Christmas parties are firmly in sight. It’s the most wonderful (and expensive) time of the year - the pressure to spend and socialise can feel overwhelming, so how can you survive party season without your bank hitting the red?

1. Think pre-owned party outfits

Fashion retailers are going all out at this time of year for our attention, flooding our inboxes with offers to tempt us to part with our cash and it’s hard to resist - but try thinking about how often you are likely to wear that sparkly mini dress, or that floor length ball gown? Try digging out your old dresses which haven’t been worn for a couple of years (we all have them hiding in the wardrobe) or alternatively, head to your local charity shops and commit to buying a second hand outfit. You’ll slash the spend on your outfit and you’re also donating to charity - many of whom need extra support at this time of year.

2. Plan your journey ahead

Without a doubt, one of the most stress-free ways to ensure your festive partying doesn’t spiral out of control is planning your return home in advance. Whilst booking a taxi might not be the cheapest way home, it can often be the safest method of transport which is in itself worth paying for. The additional perk of pre-booking, however, is that you have a set home time which enables you to leave your party at a time which suits you, avoiding the temptation of moving on to a bar, then a club, then another might regret it when you’re carried away having fun, but the next day both your head and your bank balance will thank you.

3. Stay streamlined with gift giving

It can be tempting when you’re out and about in the festive spirit to buy fun presents for every friend and colleague because who wouldn’t love a novelty singing reindeer? The reality is that whilst entertaining, you probably don’t need to buy your colleague a gift this year - and chances are they will also feel relieved that they don’t feel pressured to reciprocate. If you’re unsure about the politics of presents in a work or friendship group, raise the topic and you’ll feel far better knowing what expectations are in advance. If you’re involved in Secret Santa, ensure there is an agreed budget for all and if suitable, encourage people to provide pointers so that presents don’t go to waste.

4. Go minimalistic

It isn’t a word you often hear alongside Christmas decorations, but I’m a big advocate of the minimalist approach to festive design. Especially when you’re spending Christmas time with family or travelling around the country, shelling out a small fortune on a tree, sparkly decorations and seasonal wreaths can often turn out to be an expensive exercise, particularly when you barely get the opportunity to enjoy your decor efforts between working, socialising and then zooming off to see friends and family for festivities.

5. Most importantly, keep in mind that the festive season really isn't about spending.

Whether you’re on a small budget or planning on splashing out this year, there isn’t a rule book for how to do Christmas right. So don’t let the pressure or expectations of the holiday dictate how you do your celebration and enjoy it!


The last month of the year has finally arrived - that was quick! Besides helping you save money, we also want to make sure you’re set up for Christmas shopping, so we are giving away £150 John Lewis gift card. Who’s going to be the lucky winner? Follow Tandem Bank, retweet, comment below why you deserve to WIN and tag two friends. Competition closes on 20th December. Terms apply, good luck to you all!

Join competition here: 💙🙌⁠

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T & C's applies:

  1. By entering into the competition each individual agrees to be bound by these terms and conditions.
  2. For the individual to qualify to win the £150 John Lewis Gift Card (the ‘reward’), the individual must follow/like Tandem Bank on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram like the competition post, comment, share and tag two friends.
  3. This competition is only open to residents of the United Kingdom who are over 18 years old.
  4. The competition will commence at 17:00 GMT/BST on 04 December 2019 and all entries must be received by 23:59 GMT/ST on 19th December 2019.
  5. Individuals may submit as many entries as they wish, but no individual may win more than one reward.
  6. 2 winners will be selected randomly on 19th December 2019 and contacted through the platform they entered the competition on. The winner must claim their reward within 48 hours of Tandem notifying the individual that they are a winner. If the reward is unclaimed after this time, it will lapse and Tandem reserves the right to offer the unclaimed reward to a substitute winner selected in accordance with these terms and conditions.
  7. Tandem’s decision of the winner is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  8. Tandem reserves the right to withdraw or amend without notice this promotion in the event of any unforeseen circumstances outside of its reasonable control.
  9. The reward will be delivered digitally to the customer’s registered email address within 14 days of the winner accepting the reward.
  10. The reward will be valid for 6 months from the date of issue.
  11. The reward is non-transferable, non-refundable and cannot be exchanged for any cash alternatives in whole or in part.
  12. Certain restrictions apply to the £150 John Lewis gift card, please see for further information.
  13. The promotion is subject to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter terms of services.
  14. By entering into this offer you also agree to our Privacy Policy, which is available on our Website.
  15. The promotion and these terms and conditions shall be governed and construed in accordance with the law of England and Wales.

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