The Tweedy Times
How to Minimise waste over the Christmas period! - Written by Josh Bland
A good way to minimise waste at Christmas is to think carefully about the gifts that you plan to give and don’t be tempted to over buy. A simple way to manage this is to write a list of who you are buying for, set a budget and stick to it.
If you’re one of the 20% of people who aim to buy the bulk of their gifts by the end of October, make a list; keep hold of it and tick things off as you buy them. Buying presents throughout the year is a great strategy for spreading the cost of Christmas, but it doesn’t necessarily protect you from forgetting what you have already bought. Forgetfulness and lack of planning can lead to overbuying (and overspending) as Christmas draws closer.
Choosing gifts for someone else can be tricky and if you’re finding it difficult it might be worth asking for some ideas to point you in the right direction. If you’re buying for adults, consider the option of an experience rather than a ‘thing’ or even plan to spend some quality time together over a treat that you’ll both enjoy. Have a look at our Christmas gift tips below:
- Write a list and set a budget to keep finances on track.
- Where possible give a gift receipt so that the item can be swapped or returned if necessary.
- If you’re buying online, check the returns policy and know your consumer rights. Hold on to any cardboard boxes you might need for returns (or can otherwise reuse) but flatten the rest and put them in your recycling bin, making sure to keep the cardboard as dry as possible.
- Buy in moderation and try to give gifts of quality which are likely to be more durable and long lasting.
- If you’re buying token gifts, opt for items with minimal waste that won’t impact too heavily on the environment.
- Want to be creative? Try making your own edible gifts, but check any dislikes or dietary requirements first. Choose recipes with a reasonably long shelf life to ensure that the recipient will have time to enjoy it and don’t forget to label it clearly.
- Or if time spent in the kitchen isn’t really your thing, consider other crafts – there’s plenty of inspiration online.
- If you have a feeling that Santa is going to be generous this year, make some space in advance. Having a clear out early provides a chance to pass on unwanted toys and items in good condition to charity, and perhaps someone else can enjoy them this Christmas.
Try to avoid buying novelty Christmas clothing as gifts, such as Christmas jumpers, pyjamas and socks. Although they may seem jolly, research shows that they only tend to be worn once or twice before being thrown out. Instead, opt for something that is more likely to be worn again and again and give or keep a receipt just in case.