There’s the magic of celebrations and wanting the kids to have what they really want. And there’s dealing with the reality of them asking for the impossible…
Lego sets that retail at £500 each or a bracelet that they’ve seen in a cartoon which makes magical rainbows and transports you to a place where fairies and mermaids live.
(Those are actual examples from my children’s lists this year. It’s a headache).
So, we had a team brainstorm and thought we’d give you our bumpf Top Tips for financially ‘better’ gifting, and also the bumpf Top Ten gift ideas for the little peeps in your life.
You’ve nothing to lose by asking! If you are buying for other people’s children and have a suitable hand-me-down, or want to buy second hand, ask the parent if they mind…. Often this may mean…. more interesting wrapping shapes / it is already built and free from a fiddly box / the recipient gets a much better gift than if you buy it new. Most things are washable / wipeable and it is highly unlikely (especially if the child is under 5) they will even notice.
For your own child, this is your call! If you don’t mind 2nd hand items (or want to pay less for something new) here are some tips:
Where can you shop for lower priced items?
Well, Facebook Marketplace is a great place to start. You can filter by distance (so you don’t accidentally buy a 50p jacket from Manchester when you’re based in Exeter), and some of the lovely folks are willing to post as well. To avoid postage join some local groups: try searching for your kid’s current favourite toy. You’ll be amazed at what people are selling, often at a really good price (and sometimes barely used!). To find your local groups, type your village or town name into the Facebook search function.
If you are expecting, and have not joined any ‘parent based’ selling groups yet, there are often baby / toy or child specific groups – which are worth joining (not just for Christmas!).
Facebook is also a really good platform for clearing some pre-Christmas / Birthday / Easter (etc) space. Why not sell on some of your preloved bits’n’bobs and put the money towards this year’s tranche of presents?
Ask a friend! It might be possible that - on request - they have some bits they will sell or even donate to your family gifting (or swap previous years unused gifts) to save you even more….. not just for the kids but think about the whole family!
Of course, there’s always eBay, and if you use the filter options to make sure your item is located in the UK, you won’t discover it’s being shipped from China and won’t arrive until after the event. Equally, you can filter by condition, and select “Used” items which are a) often cheaper and b) better for the planet, as re-using is always better than buying new.
Other online sale sites / apps include Preloved, Vinted and Gumtree. These are a kind of cross between eBay and FB marketplace and sell at a national level. On any site watch out for scams and never agree to send money in the post. Check out these safety online tips before buying: https://help.gumtree.com/s/safety
Car boot sales – some finish in Autumn, but you might find one still on for Christmas. Often, with less competition than online, you will pick up massive bargains, and you can see the condition in person before buying. Speak to the stall holder, if their stall is relevant to you. Include information such as the child’s age and a bit of info on their favourite hobbies, they might provide some useful tips / offer you something which you may never have thought of but their child loved.
This certainly would mean a huge bundle of gifts on a small budget.
Finally, there are local fairs and walking markets- especially near Christmas.
What’s a walking market? Well, it’s kind of like a jumble sale, but on a MUCH bigger scale. Residents simply register their address with the organisers, and then (on the day of the market) put all their unwanted or sellable items at the bottom of their drive. Everyone else wanders around the area, buying the items they want. They are a lot of fun, and a really good way of getting to know your hometown & neighbours better. If you don’t have one in your town or village, why not organise one?
So, that’s a quick guide to places to shop, especially if you’re keen to spend less this year.
Get Rewarded when shopping
If you are shopping in retailers such as Argos, Ebay, John Lewis, Waitrose, Boots or H&M (well, over 2,300 retailers). Why not open a Kidstart Account, which saves little bonus's as you spend.
As a special treat for bumpf members get a FREE £6 bonus when you start saving with KidStart. to claim this offer simply use this link to register and start using Kidstart.
(bumpf may receive commission should you use the offer from this link).
Why not take a look at our bumpf Top Ten gift lists?
We’ve split these out into age groups, to make it easier for you to find the perfect gift. But before you go, we’d like to offer you this awesome little rhyme: it’s a shopping guide which might help keep gifting budgets under control.
Something they want,
Something they need;
Something to wear,
Something to read.
Happy Birthday / Christmas / Easter etc etc!
Love team bumpf