Senior Resources » 10 Ways to Save Money on Holiday Entertainment

10 Ways to Save Money on Holiday Entertainment

Most people love the holidays. Even if they stress you out, your grandkids’ squeals of joy when they open presents are usually worth the seasonal headache. And, you’ll have your pick of fun events around the Christmas season. Of course, between buying gifts and decorating your home, you might not have a lot of extra money to throw around. Luckily, you can still have a good time without breaking the bank. Here are 10 ways to save money on holiday entertainment.


Is a holiday really a holiday without cookies? Not only is a cookie swap an easy way to save money, but you can also have fun with your friends! You’ll walk away with a full heart and a container full of delicious baked goods.

2. Visit a Christmas tree farm.

Some people might not like real trees and their tendency of scattering pine needles all over carpets. Even if you’re firmly in the artificial tree camp, visiting a Christmas tree farm can still be an enjoyable—and relatively inexpensive—affair! It doesn’t cost a cent to enjoy the picturesque scenery and snap some photos.


3. Attend a church play or concert.

A lot of churches put on Christmas performances. From musical productions to live nativities to holiday skits, you’ll have your pick of entertainment. Bonus point—most don’t even charge admission fees!

4. Have a holiday movie night.

Christmas has inspired a whole movie genre. Whether you live for those Hallmark holiday romcoms or hum along to all the hit songs from White Christmas, there are countless Christmas movies to enjoy every holiday season. You can always find a handful on cable TV. If you’re subscribed to a streaming service, be sure to check their catalog around the holidays. A lot of Christmas movies are free to watch at that time.

5. Have a Christmas craft day with your grandkids (or any of your loved ones)!

Sure, crafts are fun for kids, but adults can enjoy them, too! Check websites like Pinterest for some crafting inspiration. If you have cotton balls or popsicle sticks laying around, be sure to use them! It may cost a few dollars to buy craft supplies, but the memories you’ll make with your loved ones? Priceless.

6. Drive around and look at Christmas lights.

If you live in a neighborhood, chances are, you have at least one or two neighbors who really get into the holiday spirit. Or maybe you are the neighbor who goes all out around the holidays! Regardless of which side of the equation you factor into, it doesn’t cost money to drive around and enjoy holiday light displays.


7. Decorate a gingerbread house.

If you want a creative and inexpensive way to have fun this holiday, decorate a gingerbread house! Most gingerbread house kits are relatively cheap, so you can have fun without stressing over your checkbook. Plus, once you’re finished, you’ve got a delicious holiday snack! Of course, your gingerbread house might also be too pretty to eat.

Related: Dear Boomers, This Christmas, I’m Thinking of You

8. Go window shopping.

A lot of stores go all out on their holiday displays, and they’re certainly worth an admiring look or two! Bundle up, fill a thermos with some homemade hot chocolate, and enjoy the festive views.

9. Make a popcorn garland!

Did you ever make popcorn garlands when you were a kid? Well, why not revive that tradition? A popcorn, needle, and thread (or fishing line) is all you need to make a fun, homemade decoration! Better yet, it won’t hurt your wallet.

10. Do a few DIY gifts.

When it comes to gift-giving, it’s truly the thought that counts. Are you an expert seamstress? A wizard with a crochet needle? A skilled painter? An origami-folding genius? Try your hand at making a few presents for your friends and loved ones! Chances are, they’ll appreciate the thought and effort and love your gift even more than its store-bought counterpart.

boomer writing a christmas letter

Looking for more?

For more help and tips, visit our senior housing directories!

Other thrifty resources:

Administration for Community Living

Bob Carlson’s Retirement Watch

Salvation Army

US Department of Housing and Urban Development

90% of seniors WANT to age at home! If you’re one of them, click here to learn more about aging in place.

Originally published December 15, 2022

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