media release (15-366MR)

ASIC's MoneySmart 12 money tips for Christmas


Australians are encouraged to visit ASIC's MoneySmart website leading up to Christmas to discover money saving tips that make sense.

This month, ASIC's MoneySmart website features a special series of 12 Money Tips for Christmas in the spirit of the seasonal favourite 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'.

"Christmas is often a busy time of the year arranging gifts, food and decorations, let alone working out how you are going to pay for it all," said Mr Miles Larbey, Senior Executive Leader for Financial Literacy at ASIC.

"ASIC's MoneySmart 12 Tips for Christmas are designed to help people make the most of their money, financially navigate the festive season, and avoid a financial hangover in the New Year."

ASIC's MoneySmart 12 Tips for Christmas are accompanied on ASIC's MoneySmart website by a Christmas Spending infographic and a series of video vox pops with everyday Australians sharing their Christmas money stories and tips.

ASIC's MoneySmart 12 Tips for Christmas are summarised below:

  1. Learn from Christmas past - think about whether you spent too much last year and avoid past mistakes.
  2. Make a list and check it twice - create a Christmas budget and stick to it. 
  3. Christmas gift hacks - from Kris Kringle or Secret Santa to taking advantage of the sales, there are many ways you can save on the gifts you'll need to buy.
  4. Plan your shopping - research gifts, check for specials and compare prices online before you head out to the shops. 
  5. Bill smooth your Christmas - lay-by larger gifts a few months before Christmas or start buying gifts in July to smooth out your expenses (a good tip for next year!).
  6. Monitor the plastic - use your credit card wisely and have a plan to pay it off.  A Christmas spend of $1,000 will take you a year to pay off if you pay $100 per month.
  7. Track your spending – use ASIC's TrackMySPEND app to monitor your Christmas spending.
  8. Gift cards - gift cards make great gifts for difficult to buy for people but they must be used by the expiry date.
  9. Kids and Christmas cash – many Aussie kids get some cash at Christmas, which can also provide an opportunity to teach them about saving and budgeting.
  10. Give meaningful gifts – gifts of time can be more valuable than expensive items.
  11. Cut Christmas Day food costs - simplify the menu, ask people to bring a plate and buy items in the weeks leading up to Christmas to spread the costs.
  12. Plan for next Christmas - plan ahead for next year and set up a savings plan in the New Year.

A poll of about 2,000 visitors to ASIC's MoneySmart website last Christmas season found that 60% of them used savings to pay for Christmas presents, 20% used their credit card, 10% borrowed money from family and friends, and 10% used lay-by.[1]

"Join the Christmas budgeters," Mr Larbey said.  "Research shows 57% of people set a Christmas budget last year, and four out of five people stuck to it.  This can help you keep control of your festive finances."[2]

Mr Larbey said ASIC's MoneySmart offers trusted and impartial financial guidance and tools to help Australians make financial decisions not just at Christmas but every day.

"In addition to the Christmas tips, I encourage people to explore ASIC's MoneySmart website and see if our financial calculators and apps can help them manage their money and make 2016 the best year yet," he said.

Note to editors

Please use the following links to ASIC's MoneySmart 12 Tips for Christmas website pages.


As the Australian Government agency responsible for financial literacy, ASIC leads and coordinates the National Financial Literacy Strategy 2014-17 which was launched on 1 August 2014 following extensive consultation. 

The five priorities set out in the National Strategy are:

  1. Educate the next generation, particularly through the formal education system
  2. Increase the use of free, impartial information, tools and resources
  3. Provide quality targeted guidance and support
  4. Strengthen co-ordination and effective partnerships
  5. Improve research, measurement and evaluation.

Financial literacy is about having the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours necessary to make sound financial decisions, based on personal circumstances, to improve financial wellbeing.

ASIC’s flagship financial literacy initiatives under the National Strategy are:

  • ASIC’s MoneySmart – a dedicated website, which provides trusted and impartial financial guidance and digital decision-making tools, for consumers and investors covering all aspects of personal finance for all ages and life stages
  • ASIC’s MoneySmart Teaching – a national program to support and promote consumer and financial literacy in Australian schools in partnership with State and Territory education departments.

For more information about the National Strategy and its supporters visit:   

1 ASIC's MoneySmart poll, 1,985 votes, December 2014

2 Commonwealth Bank, Survey of Australian consumers Christmas spending, December 2014


Media enquiries: Contact ASIC Media Unit