The holiday season can be a costly time of year. An online calculator helps Canadians set spending limits for people they want to buy presents for.
The Christmas Cost Control Calculator takes your annual income, the number of people you’d like to buy for and gives you a price range for their gift.
It also accounts for so-called “holly jolly justice,” allowing you to deduct points for every time that person was naughty to you, or add points for every time they were nice.
“Let’s say your best friend Dave has had an alright year. He’s taken you to his parents’ cottage in the summer, he’s always good for shouting a round of beers at the bar, but he does have a habit of putting embarrassing photos of you on Instagram.
“So two points for ‘nice’ for Dave, but he’s going to get a point for ‘naughty’ as well,” said William Eve, the country manager for Finder Canada.
One “nice” action equals a five per cent increase in what you’d spend on their gift.
Finder, a personal finance website, wanted to come up with an entertaining way to get people thinking about budgeting.
“The holidays can be an expensive time for all of us,” Eve said. “Finder was looking for a fun way that people can take a look at their spending and how much they’re spending on those that they are getting gifts for.”
A survey the company did found those in Saskatchewan and Alberta are the first and second most-likely to cut costs. It found women are more likely than men to save money on presents this year.
The most popular cost-saving method by far is to set a price limit, with 45 per cent of adult Canadians surveyed saying they’ll do so. Other techniques include making a gift, giving an experience or less expensive present, waiting to buy until after-Christmas sales or doing a Secret Santa.
You can try out the Christmas Cost Control Calculator online here.