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Tips to Navigate the Holidays

Oct 1, 2020

2020 has been a year that most of us want to forget. Between fears of COVID-19 and its financial toll on our economy, we’ve had to change the ways we live, in big ways and small. Through it all, one aspect of our lives is not changing—the holidays are still coming.

By planning ahead now, you’ll be ready for them. For example, to avoid big credit card bills in January add extra money now to your savings account. At Honda FCU we can help you look at your options and still make this a holiday to remember. Here’s a checklist to help you cope with the stresses for what could be the most challenging holiday season in memory.

Shape your budget. First, determine your holiday spending limits. Include greeting cards, wrapping paper and bows, travel expenses, charitable donations and gift exchanges in your budget to get a true price tag for the holidays. If you’re considering big purchases, give yourself more time to find the absolute best deals. Be aware of the huge savings available on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Use your Honda FCU Visa Card thoughtfully, and you can earn valuable Member Advantage Points on top of your great savings.

Shop for travel deals now. This year Thanksgiving falls on November 26th. According to Forbes Magazine, if you want to fly domestically for turkey day buy your tickets at least three weeks before you depart. If you want to arrive the Wednesday before, buy your tickets no later than November 4th. This year flying abroad may be very complicated, if not impossible. However, if that’s your plan buy your ticket at least four weeks ahead. Of course keep checking your airline’s face covering policies because they can change regularly.

Travel restrictions vary. There’s no uniform message across the states, and that can create headaches for travelers. According to CDC travel restrictions, the rules are changing frequently. Case in point, they recently dropped the 14-day self-quarantine for international and out-of-state travelers. Of course, the rules still vary and are changing. The message is, to avoid stress, look up the local restrictions and recommendations before you get there.

Game plan for holiday stress. Many people feel the blues during the holidays in part because we often try to do too much. A simple way to avoid this is build extra time into your schedule. Count on weather causing delays and you’ll be less bothered when it happens. Rather than lugging extra bags to the airport, you could ship gifts or heavy coats ahead. Also, be sure to ask for that time off now because many of your coworkers may want those days off too. Lastly, learn the power of saying “no” nicely. The sanity you save will be your own.

Pay attention to holiday safety. Tree lights, electrical wires and decorations are festive, but dangerous. There are significantly more home fires between December and January compared to other months. And, fire is not the only risk we face during the holidays. According to the Electrical Safety Foundation International, nearly 10,000 people are treated for falls related to hanging decorations and tripping over extension cords. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and secure extension cords to protect yourself and others.

Talk to a HFCU counselor. Whatever holiday financial challenges you're facing we can help you find solutions. Before the season makes you crazy, request a consultation with one of our financial wellness representatives today, because Together We’re Better.