With the holidays now in full swing and Christmas quickly approaching, it’s time to start thinking about what to gift your friends and family. But as a broke college student on a budget, figuring out what you can actually afford to give can quickly become stressful and overwhelming.
If you’re on a limited budget but still want to get in the giving spirit of the season, never fear. You can always gift experiences and spend time with your friends and family rather than giving them a physical present! Here are a few invaluable ways to gift yourself to others this season.
GIFT IDEA #1 – BAKE SOMETHING DELICIOUS WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Food is always an affordable and easy present to give, and you can totally get your friends involved in the process! Invite your friends over to your dorm’s kitchen one night before the holiday break, throw on a cheesy Christmas movie or some tunes, and get down to baking your favorite seasonal treats.
If your friends are on as much of a budget as you are, this is an easy way to have everyone “gift” each other without the worry about running out of money. Ask your friends to bring something to contribute or bake, and you’re totally set for a holiday get-together!
GIFT IDEA #2 – HEAD OUT FOR SOME CHRISTMAS CAROLING
It may seem a little cliché, but this is totally a fun way to get into the Christmas spirit with your friends and/or family. It’s a silly way to get out and get into the spirit of the season in a totally low-pressure environment! Trust us – you won’t be the worst singer there.
If you’re feeling a little nervous about hitting the streets to carol on your own, look around on your town forums or city website ahead of time to see if there are any nights that are already set up for locals to go caroling as a group. You may end up making some new friends on the way!
GIFT IDEA #3 – GO ON A CHRISTMAS LIGHT TOUR
You don’t need a professional guide to go out and check out all the amazing lights set up around your town! Whether there’s a neighborhood nearby that’s known for their crazy setups or your simply cruising around looking, this is a great way to spend some time with friends and family for the holiday season.
Organize the night ahead of time and get some snacks and hot drinks ready for the ride. Gather your friends and family together, set up your caravan of cars, and hit the road for a free light show!
GIFT IDEA #4 – VOLUNTEER AT A LOCAL SHELTER
Whether you’re interested in helping the homeless or are totally on board for assisting some cute little animals for the holidays, getting together with friends and family to volunteer at a local shelter is a fun and rewarding way to get into the spirit of the season and really give back to others and your community.
If you’re not sure where to go or what to do, look around online and try getting in touch with a few local shelters. They may have some upcoming holiday events that they could use some help with or have suggestions for donations that you can provide in lieu of volunteering your time.