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    • MSE Jenny
    • By MSE Jenny 23rd Oct 07, 12:19 PM
    • 1,223Posts
    • 3,555Thanks
    MSE Jenny
    40+ Christmas MoneySaving tips
    • #1
    • 23rd Oct 07, 12:19 PM
    40+ Christmas MoneySaving tips 23rd Oct 07 at 12:19 PM

    Hi all, we've written a new 40+ Christmas MoneySaving tips guide to help you cut the cost of the festive season.

    Is there anything you'd like to see added? Do you have any top tips?

    for your help!

    MSE Jenny

    Last edited by MSE Jenny; 11-09-2012 at 7:23 PM.
Page 2
  • SurfBowlSC
    Our office is organising a £5 or £6 secret santa - gifts to be opened at our Christmas lunch (which also costs!!) All this is unwelcome expense especially as I've just started working there practically voluntarily. I can make felt jewelry for a woman, but has anyone had the experience of buying secret santas for guys they don't know at all well?? :confused:
    Originally posted by Passiflora Polar Bear are always good for £5 items.
    2 years ago I ended up pulling out a woman who had been in the company 2 weeks! Fortunately Play had those squishy cushion/next rest things......
  • GILL635
    This thread's brilliant!

    I'm doing Christmas Dinner for everyone for the first time this year in my own home, so any money saving tips for the season are great by me!

    If I think of anything (other than the usual price comparison and cashback sites) then I shall let you all know.

    Thanks again

    • jesselivermore
    • By jesselivermore 20th Dec 11, 2:21 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Read this before buying anything from John Lewis or Peter Jones this Christmas!
    This is a post about some very serious problems I’ve been having with the John Lewis second year warranty for my Toshiba laptop. I would caution any MSE users to think twice before doing any Christmas shopping at John Lewis or Peter Jones!
    This is why:
    I used to trust John Lewis’ brand name, so much so that I chose to pay them £700 instead of spending £630 for the same laptop from PC World (due to a technicality I was told that couldn’t price-match).
    I justified this additional cost because of the extra warranty period (beginning as soon as the manufacturers 12 month warranty ended and lasting a further year). I also thought that I could rely on John Lewis’ reputation for customer service. I was wrong.
    A few months into the John Lewis warranty the unit developed several hardware issues. I called the JL technical support number and they explained that I would need to send it off to their repair providers, Regenersis, who were based outside of London. This would take up to 14 days.
    I have since discovered that John Lewis have a commercial agreement with this repair company. Despite the fact that any repair work done by a Toshiba-authorised repair partner should be to the same high standard, John Lewis have a commercial incentive to put work through Regenersis only.
    I told them that I used my laptop daily, so this would be very inconvenient. The John Lewis employee I spoke to said that there was another option available, at the discretion of the Oxford Street store, which was to use any other Toshiba authorised repair centre instead, including one I had found in Central London called Gultronics. I called the JL store’s PC department and this was confirmed to me. All I needed to do was to pay for the work and get a full invoice and John Lewis would reimburse me in-store afterwards. They knew Gultronics well and were happy for me to use the company.
    Gultronics inspected the unit and wrote a repair note listing the hardware issues which would need replacement parts. I paid almost £150 for the parts and the repair charge and they then ordered the parts. Whilst waiting for their delivery, another issue emerged which I confirmed was also a hardware fault with the help of Toshiba’s technical support centre. I noted the reference number for this call and asked them to note full details of the case.
    Since another part would need to be ordered, I called the JL Oxford St store to let them know. I was told that the person I had spoken to previously had left the company, no work done via Gultronics would be permitted and that I would have to carry out all further repairs with the repair partner, and that I would have to contact JL head office to find out whether a refund of the £150 I had already paid Gultronics was even possible.
    At this point I was livid. This was a totally different policy by the company to the one they had previously taken. I had:
    1) Spent a lot of money, in good faith and acting under the advice of two separate employees of John Lewis. I was now not even sure if this reimbursement would be honoured by the firm.
    2) Wasted a lot of my time and inconvenienced myself a great deal
    3) Still not managed to resolve the issues with my laptop at ongoing inconvenience to myself
    4) Been told I would need to waste further time (up to 14 days) in order to repair my machine.
    I complained about this – first to the manager of the John Lewis store’s consumer electronics department, Mr. Mark John Pierce, and then to customer services at John Lewis head office (020 7828 1000 – ask for Kiran Shah, if any readers are having similar issues). It was agreed that they would look into both the refund and sorting out a more viable option for the repairs, and that someone would revert in full within 24 hours.
    I got a call the next day from a junior in the Oxford St store reiterating their previous position on the repairs. I’ve had no feedback on the refund.
    I have since emailed the customer services department asking for a more acceptable response. I believe senior management need to be made aware of the escalation of my complaint, so I CC’d the Chief Executive of John Lewis, Mr. Andy Street, and the Chairman, Mr. Charlie Mayfield. More than three working days later, I’ve had no acknowledgement of my email at all.
    To summarise, John Lewis have really let me down and in doing so they have massively damaged their reputation for customer service.
    By not allowing me to use an authorised Toshiba repair centre in London, it is my view that they have contravened the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999. In doing so, John Lewis are ignoring what would be a more pragmatic option, given the considerable inconvenience I have already been put to. They are choosing commercial agreements and profits over customer experience.
    I will now be pushing for further compensation for the time and funds incurred over the last month as I have tried to resolve this issue. I’d love to hear if anyone else has had a similarly bad experience with John Lewis and how they managed to resolve it.
    I’ll update this post with any further developments – in the meantime, I would advise anyone reading this to think twice before doing any Christmas shopping at John Lewis or Peter Jones!
  • Jaybee32
    Charity Xmas
    We have been doing 'Charity Shop' Xmas with our family for ages. Combined with a price cap of £5 or £10 per person you are buying for this really brings the cost of Xmas down and if you don't like what you get nobody minds if you give it to a charity shop..! It also brings the meaning of Xmas back to some degree as you feel that you are doing something to help those less fortunate than you at the same time.
  • candice-marie
    My local charity shop often has unused items for sale which can make good gifts. I also give interesting second hand items - we get too fixated on everything being new and often the second hand is better quality - it might even turn out to be an antique!
  • alias 1
    Cheaper stamps?
    Looking for some other info, I chanced upon a notice in the Royal Mail prices guide which predicted cheaper Christmas stamps for seniors on Pension Guarantee credit for a few weeks before Christmas.

    Don't know how many, nor for how long, nor how much cheaper! Anyone any further info?
  • gloriouslylost
    How I managed to save /make money
    Some great idea's on this forum. I just wanted to share how I managed to make/save money to go travelling.

    Please have a read and see what you think:

    I did forget to mention survey sites, for the long term I guess it can be helpful, but I found making 5p a time a bit of a bore. The only one I'd reccomment where you can make up to about 30p at time was onepoll and the other one is a handy app called quidco, I stood in a shopping centre in basingstoke and make £5 by logging into different shops. Pretty handy if youre shopping anyway

    Follow me on twitter @gloriously_lost
    • alicaurusrex
    • By alicaurusrex 21st Sep 14, 10:46 AM
    • 16 Posts
    • 36 Thanks
    My family have celebrated what we call "Green Christmas" every year since I was about 15 years old. This came about because my mum had to got to the point where she was keeping a list of what we had all received from family members last Christmas, so that she could be sure to buy 'return' gifts for those people of equal value... which is ridiculous. She was spending so much on useless gifts that neither we nor the recipient wanted/needed, purely out of politeness.

    Green Christmas works like this: all gifts have to be under £5 in cost and they can't be "shop bought". Gifts that are hand made, from a charity shop, or second hand from Gumtree or eBay are all good bets. We agreed this with all of our family members for the first year and it was so good that we've done it every year since!

    My best ever Christmas presents have all been 'Green', and every year it is hilarious and so fun to open our 'gifts' together. By taking away the spending factor it means that people feel way more relaxed and free to buy funny or silly presents without worrying about wasting money, and they also think harder about what that person would really like.

    Some good gifts we've given to eachother:

    - Homemade jam / biscuits in a lovely antique £5 jar or bowl (from a charity shop)
    - Vintage Leica camera for my dad who loves photography (£3!!)
    - Second hand iPod Mini that was £5 on Gumtree, loaded up with running songs for a friend who was on a health kick
    - Tai chi sword for my mum who loves tai chi (£5 from a carboot)
    - Homemade recipe books
    - Lego - I got a massive tub of random lego for a friends kid on Gumtree which obviously he LOVED.
    - A refurbished bike - the frame was free and our friend resprayed and refurbished it for my brother
    - Hand sewn bags
    - Home made bath bombs or candles
    - Family heirlooms... My nan was having a declutter and she found lots of trinkets that belonged to my great grandparents, so my brother and I received some amazing gifts like a stop-watch and a little box that was my great-grans.
    - Beers - our friend loves unusual beers so we bought him a couple of bottles of unusual beers (around a fiver for 2) and then personalised a pint glass with glass paints with his nickname etc.
    - Food - another friend is impossible to buy for but is known for his eating abilities so we bought him the ingredients for a massive English breakfast from the farmers market. Probably more like a tenner but he said it was the best gift he'd ever received - haha! Would work well also with cheese or something nice from the deli.
    - Ridiculous fancy dress outfits for those people who you never know what to get for (I once received a gorilla costume...)
    - Board games - very cheap second hand and always fun at Christmas.
    - Kitchenware - if somebody collects a certain type of kitchenware then is easy and cheap to find jugs/platters etc in the same patterns on eBay, which is a nice gift to add to their collection.
    - CDs... My dad is a massive Bob Dylan fan so I downloaded and burnt CDs of all of Bob Dylan's radio sessions (which you can't buy as a box-set) and gave him a homemade 'box set'. Mix CDs for the car are good too.
    - Vinyl records of their favourite bands.
    - Skills - if you have a useful skill then a great free gift is to gift your skill. For example I am a web designer so I helped my friend set up a website for her small business and paid for the hosting as her Christmas present. You could gift your skills as a cleaner/gardener/petsitter/entertainer or whatever your skills are.
    - Art / craft things.

    I think the important thing is to clearly agree way beforehand with your friends and family beforehand that you will all do Green Christmas and make sure everybody understands it. Some people don't grasp the concept immediately!

    Obviously when there are small children in the family then Green isn't always ideal (although you can get some awesome toys for under a fiver at any charity shop!!)
    • TomWillis
    • By TomWillis 8th Dec 16, 5:43 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    I love all you tips especially the 43rd point about the end of sale bargain. I always go for that. During these holiday's shopping season people overspend on items they usually don't need. So we have to also consider saving money while overspending on holidays. Happy Holidays
    • Vaishali Joshi
    • By Vaishali Joshi 5th Aug 17, 6:50 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Vaishali Joshi
    Where is Santa?
    There is an age old story that we all have heard as kids- where in the Santa lived in the North Pole and during Christmas, he rides on his sled and flies in the houses of the !!!8220;well-behaved!!!8221; kids to fill them up with presents.

    But do you think that Santa exists? Or was it all a farce? Where is Santa?
    Last edited by Vaishali Joshi; 05-08-2017 at 6:53 AM. Reason: Added more Information
    • C J
    • By C J 22nd Aug 17, 3:40 PM
    • 1,039 Posts
    • 6,373 Thanks
    C J
    You can track Santa during December on the official NORAD site:

    Then you will know exactly where Santa is
    An ever-shifting labyrinth of chiaroscuro
    • springdreams
    • By springdreams 25th Aug 17, 9:16 PM
    • 3,562 Posts
    • 31,366 Thanks
    Hmmm - resurrection of an old thread by a newbie .... can we expect some spam to follow soon??
    Smiles are as perfect a gift as hugs... size fits all... and nobody minds if you give it back.
    Originally posted by squeaky
    !!!9734;.!!!12290;.:*!!!12539;° Housework is so much easier without the clutter !!!9734;.!!!12290;.:*!!!12539;°
    SPC No. 518
    • tracywhite
    • By tracywhite 12th Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Thanks for sharing the money saving tips.
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