CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Are you starting to feel the stress of shopping for holiday gifts? If so, you’re not alone.
A new study from Bankrate found 45 percent of Americans say they feel pressure to overspend on gifts. Parents and middle-income earners are more likely to feel that pressure, the study found.
“We shouldn’t throw financial best practices out the window just because it’s the holiday season," Bankrate.com data analyst Adrian Garcia said.
The study also found 31 million Americans are willing to boycott gift-giving altogether to save money around the holidays.
Women say they have felt more pressure than men to overspend on holiday gifts.
However, to keep with the gift giving tradition, women are more willing than men to shop around for deals and use coupons and almost twice as likely to give homemade gifts.
Millennials (ages 18-37) and Gen Xers (ages 38-53) feel more pressure to overspend than those who are older than them. Millennials are more willing than Baby Boomers (ages 54-63) to give second-hand items as gifts and are more willing than Gen Xers to give homemade gifts around the holidays.
Meanwhile, despite the pressure, most still aren’t willing to re-gift to save money during the holidays. The study found that only 22 percent would do so. Even fewer, 16 percent, said they would be willing to buy used or secondhand items.
Experts suggest keeping a budget to manage the money coming in and going out before you start shopping.
Avoid overspending by determining a budget at least a few weeks ahead of time and set expectations for exchanging with your family and friends," Garcia said. "You can also be creative and find ways to reduce your overall spend and focus instead on making gifts meaningful rather than expensive.”