Miss Pocket Money

Giving your children cash this Christmas? Here’s a few tips to make it matter.

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My piggy bank

Have you had enough of shopping yet? There are days when I feel I could never bore of browsing the aisles. In November I could happily skip along the streets admiring the onset of Christmas but by December and as Christmas Day approaches, the merriment has been replaced by fear and mild panic!

What to get who and who haven’t I bought for yet? My head feels like one massive list and I’m terrified I may drop one of the balls – not a stocking filler ball, more of a forgot to buy the Christmas pudding blunder!

As children get older the pressure to buy gifts generally lessens and there is an increasing demand for cash. Sometimes giving cash is the best option but giving it and making it matter is the trick.

If you’re giving your children cash this Christmas the most important thing is to make sure they think about what to do with it before they spend it. Instant gratification is the norm nowadays and children like nothing more than to buy the first thing that grabs their attention, even if you know it will be dismissed as soon as they get home. Be sure to talk to them about what they want to buy and discuss the merits of each item.

Keep it safe! It’s easy to lose money, especially amidst the wrapping paper and chaos of Christmas Day morning so make sure it’s put away safely and quickly! If giving gift cards make sure you make a mental note of the expiry date and again, keep them in a safe space, millions of pounds are lost every year and handed to retailers through gift cards which expire, are lost and forgotten about.

Some will be saving for a larger gift which is great, so talk to them about where they keep the money, is it going into a wallet in the sock drawer of could it be earning them interest in a bank account?

These are all obvious, common sense points but if you follow them it can help the money handed over this Christmas mean more and be better spent.

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