Repeat after us: giving gifts doesn’t always mean you have to break the bank. Read on for our tips celebrating the holidays on a budget in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong is a notoriously expensive city to live in. We probably all have those days when we try to look for the best deals in town, or even haggle with the ladies at the local markets. And with Christmas parties and the gifting season just around the corner, we know we aren’t the only ones counting our pennies… But hey, honestly, the best gifts don’t always have to cost an arm and a leg – it’s the thought that counts, right? So, below are some tips to help you celebrate your holidays on a budget in the 852 – without compromising the quality of your presents or your festive fun.
How to celebrate your holidays on a budget in Hong Kong
1. Try a gift exchange instead of buying gifts for everyone
Participating in a gift exchange is the best way to celebrate your holidays on a budget, especially when you belong to a big group or company. Not sure what to buy for John in the finance department? The chances are, you won’t need to think about it, because by organising a Secret Santa or simply drawing names from a hat, you only need to shop for one person. And with a reasonable budget set, this means you can be as thoughtful or imaginative as you want, without excessive financial burden.
In search of stocking fillers? Our Christmas gift guide has you covered for all types of recipients and budgets.
2. DIY, don’t buy!
Let’s be honest – some of us aren’t the niftiest people out there. But this is what gives our gifts meaning, right? We’ve gone out of our way to knit scarves, curate photo albums and care packages, and even make Hogwarts acceptance letters by hand. Trust us, the effort is all worth it when you see the smiles on their faces! (And it most likely cost less than buying an actual product, too!)
Are you crafty? Channel your inner artist at these creative classes in Hong Kong.
3. Replace champagne with prosecco
Can you tell the difference between champagne and prosecco? Due to the differences in production area and method, champagne (which is made in the Champagne region in northern France) is typically more expensive than prosecco (which is made in Italy). Let’s not go into detail here, but if you can’t differentiate the two, your guests probably can’t, either – but no judgement here! So, hands off the Moët for a sec and just grab the average sparkling wine off the shelves of M&S, and you should be sorted.
Got a wine-mergency? These wine delivery services can come to your rescue!
4. Go potluck instead of food catering
As much as we love the amazing variety and quality of the food delivery and catering services in Hong Kong, they aren’t always the most budget-friendly. So, how about organising a potluck and having every guest bring their own dish to share to the party? And even if you aren’t exactly a chef, contributing ingredients to a hot pot or barbecue doesn’t sound too bad, either.
Need some cooking inspiration? Check out the recipes by The Veggie Wifey.
5. Festive costumes swap and thrift
Do you like to explore your friend’s closet? This season is the perfect time to do so, with all the parties coming up. Whether you’re in need of a fancy dress for a cocktail party, or an accessory or two to elevate your outfit, you can swap, thrift, or even shop your friends’ clothes and costumes to save yourself – and the Earth – from overspending and unnecessary waste. What’s more, you and your friends can have fun styling each other, too!
Try renting clothes, and explore these circular fashion brands to do your part in leading a more sustainable lifestyle.