The DFW "Celebrate Christmas for free in 2008" Challenge

How does celebrating christmas at no personal cost to yourself sound? Too good to be true? In a recent post on another board it was discussed whether it would be possible to save up vouchers and "free money" from survey sites etc in order to celebrate Christmas next year without using any money from wages etc.

Several posters thought it would be an idea to try a challenge to see if we could do this.

Ideas that have been suggested so far are
  • keeping money from surveys / daily clicks in a separate account
  • saving up vouchers from survey sites /Pigsback etc- Sea78 has posted an excellent list of sites below. (Thanks, Sea!!)The only others I can think of are Home of Research and Pure Profile. Also OnePoll (Thanks tru, had missed that one myself!)
  • buying items in the sales (especially cards and wrapping paper)
  • looking out for 3 for 2's, BOGOF's etc
  • making own crafts etc
  • Do the sealed pot challenge
  • Use money off coupons for shopping (I am intending to put the same amount in my sealed pot for every coupon I use - thanks stressed.mum for the idea. I also thought that when I save on a multibuy when shopping I'll put the saved amount in the sealed pot. Asda are very good at listing savings on the bottom of the receipt so I don't have to work it out myself!))
  • Save using supermarket savings card. These usually add bonus £££s sometime in November. I quite often get Accor luncheon voucher's from a survey site. I am going to find out if Asda accept them from shopping and every time I use them I will put the same amount on a savings card. That way I'm saving them up without having to hand over a lot of voucher booklets at the end of the year.
  • Ebay / car boot sales (buying and selling) - can be good for sealed, brand new toiletries sets (Thanks, doodle doo!)
  • "Recycle" unwanted gifts (Thanks hypno!) either via Ebay (Keep the labels on to raise the item value - Thanks skint spice!) or by giving them to someone else. Beware of giving them back to the person who bought you them though!
  • Join a Christmas club (Thanks saffronflowers!) - especially good if you might "dip into" the savings yourself!
  • use nectar points/clubcard points for magazine subscriptions for xmas pressies (Thanks hypno!)
  • Save loyalty card points - Boots, Tesco, WH Smiths, Tesco etc
  • Check the Grabbits board for bargains!
  • Think about making your own hampers - cheaper and more personal. The Christmas board has loads of good ideas and photos for all occasions. Watch out for baskets in the sales
  • For anyone who does online grocery shopping, if you go through you get 2 ipoints for every £1 you spend which over the year should be enough to get a pressie or two for free (Thanks sweetpea_03)
  • Competition prizes (either selling to make money or using as presents) Thanks tigtag!
  • Join the "Make £10 a day in...Challenge"
  • If you're a mystery shopper and need to make a purchase, buy something and put it away as a gift. Benbenandme managed to get most of her DS's Christmas stocking like this last year!
  • Watch out in newspapers for offers where you can collect vouchers to get DVD's, CD's or gift packs. All you pay is postage. (Thanks evanesco)
I have added to this list from suggestions from other posters - thanks to everyone for their ideas! I can keep adding to this if anyone has any more suggestions.

This first post is very much a "post in progress" depending upon how people want it to work.

Who's in?
chocaholic110; saffronflowers; sea78; doodledoo; stressed.mum; candyblue; CRANKY40; scarlett1974; jess444; taxi73; kiwigirl; tru; sarahneedle1872; hypno06; tigtag02; sweetpea03; skint_spice; pheeni; spud30; purpletea65; noggin; wyebird; redsquirrel80; lil_me; skintscotslass; gemmzie; slowlyfading; lunar; jo_b; benbenandme; liloandstitch; evanesco; always_amazed; moneygypsy; irishwexford, ches; MERFE; ehallett; 98sidney; FrankieM; pippo; Claire Jones; Mollymop5; sashacat; lucy1982; tattycath; misery-able; superpup; tink1981; azjh77; emptynester; frosty; Che75; racer356; gems 2381; huxley; Jenna; chardonnay; deb76; lindsaygalaxy; Prudent; Feef; scorpio04; NWLass; Lelc; Penny2MyName; gillypen; whitetigeress333; Annie021063; buffythedebtslayer; boredofbeingathome; kiwi88; jo1972; wornoutmumoftwo; painted lady; Queen.Bess; lysasparkles; Christina F; JayneC; dobs; st1993; buxtonrabbitgreen; Platinum Horse; jak; abovetheclouds; melvis; clearmydebts; ikkle87; smallybeki

(I've added everyone who's posted. If you want to be added, or deleted or if I missed you (oops!), then let me know!)

I am planning to update here but also keep a simple total in my signature of what I've made / spent. I would imagine in January the spent will outnumber the made as I visit the sales!

Also, though I am aware that there is a Chistmas / Special Occasions as this is a DFW challenge we would be very grateful if it could stay on this board?

The Christmas / Special Occasions board is also running a similar challenge aiming to get all their presents free in 2008. Anyone who would like to [strike]steal their ideas[/strike] swap ideas and give / get moral support needs to look here...



  • Saving in a Christmas club; or paying money to the butcher for next years meat.

    Buying stocking presents one or two a month (but not losing them as I have done in the past!!0

  • Sea78
    Sea78 Posts: 6,185
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker Debt-free and Proud!
    oh oh oh - so glad you've started this!! :D Been waiting for it.

    I would find this useful to stay on this board as I know lots of us have been struggling with not debting around Christmas so will help on the DFW board!

    I'll be getting some of the stuff in the sales in Jan as there are great bargains to be had - Christmas cards for 50p a box etc.

    Sea xxx
    CCCS DMP:Feb 07
    Total:£37,016.47 now £0 DEBT FREE FEB 14

    2022 Decluttering Campaign 49/1011
  • doodledo_2
    doodledo_2 Posts: 4,676 Forumite
    I would definately love to do this. Although I do save for xmas it would be nice if I didn't need to use this cash and it could go on my debt at the end of the year instead.

    I am thinking of using one of the drawers under my bed as my xmas present drawer and sticking things in there as I get them so I dont get things then lose them.

    Another good thing is getting stuff at car boots. Often see brand new smellie sets etc.
    Proud to be dealing with my debts - DFW No: 712

    03/09/09 - DEBT FREE AT LAST :D
    Racing Hypno to Save - £10/£5000
  • I'm in if that's OK

    Had decided to do this myself but will need this to stay on track

    I plan to:
    put money from surveys and cash back etc in a different account,
    keep any vouchers from surveys,
    save any bogoff, 3 for 2 or coupons in that account
    Will try to do some ebaying next year too
    Do the sealed jar challenge

    I will all try to save any overtime money I get and increase in child benefit etc that isn't part of budget if that is Ok? Can I all save my free months of council tax?

    Stressed xx
    Hoping to stick to the challenge this year!!
    Make £5 a day for 366 started Dec 2019
    YTD £ £ 78.23/£1£1,825
    Cash - £ 48.23 Vouchers - £ 30

    Wombling into 2020 £38.78
  • I too would like to join in with this challenge. I will also be buying as much as I can when the after Christmas sales are on, hopefully all for 50p or less!
    £23366/ £39206.92 DFD Nov 2016
  • CRANKY40
    CRANKY40 Posts: 5,670
    Debt-free and Proud! Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Oh yes, count me in on this one. I have my pigsback vouchers, my nectar points, and there are also tesco clubcard vouchers to be sold/used.

    I save for Christmas all year round, but it would be great not to have to use the savings fund.
  • Sea78
    Sea78 Posts: 6,185
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker Debt-free and Proud!
    Survey sites to use?
    REMEMBER you can often sign up to survey sites through the cashback sites, so make sure you check those first.
    I'm signed up to (converts points to nectar points automatically so your nectar balance just grows which is great and can use for all sorts of gifts). - get emails and click through to get points. - surveys, sometimes get market research stuff sent through to try :) - IPSOS surveys - regular and can get argos/ whsmith vouchers. - collect piggy points - see freebie points for more details. - cashback sites - but you can do daily clicks. Also worth using if any friends/family buy online - just make sure you're there when they do! - get the click through emails also get surveys - points redeemable for loads of stuff.
    pineconeresearch - not sure how you get an invitation - they give £4 per survey. - more points that I think you swap for cash. - not sure - get surveys, check balance (whatever it is) then get money. - lots don't like this - slow and occasional - some can't be bothered, but doesn't take that long really. - redeem surveys for cash vouchers - eg argos - as above, but specifically for those with children, those with under 2s get the most I think, as I just got yet another one that was more aimed at under 2s parents.

    More can be found on the freebies board and I think eagerlearner has a new thing that help to get £2 a day from daily clicks which would be nice :)
    Hope this helps
    Sea xxx
    CCCS DMP:Feb 07
    Total:£37,016.47 now £0 DEBT FREE FEB 14

    2022 Decluttering Campaign 49/1011
  • What a great idea. I'm up for the challange, but not sure if I can manage totally "free" - I can definitely do "as humanly cheap as possible though" :D I've actually already started for next year :o with some fab 3 for 2s and drastically reduced stuff in boots. I have over £100 of boots points which I'm planning on spending in the sales after xmas and had already decided that any quidco money / piggpoints vouchers would be going towards next year's xmas.

    Bring it on :rotfl:
    You can't control everything in life....... your hair was put on your head to remind you of that :p

    Proud to be BSC no. 103
  • jess444_2
    jess444_2 Posts: 1,225 Forumite
    Thank you for starting this challenge, it is just what I need. I have joined he sealed pot challenge.
    Aim to collect voucher froms Pigsback and cash from Quidco and Lightspeed.
  • taxi73
    taxi73 Posts: 20,815 Forumite
    What a great thread..I need to sign up to a few more sites and I've just had a letter from TNS so will look in to this...I have used pigsback vouchers and quidco money and boots points for christmas presents and usually buy sale stuff throughout the year will take the ideas on board from here to have a totally spend free christmas if possible
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