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I’m a shopping expert – how to make £40 a month from buying Christmas presents and food

PRICES are currently through the roof, but one savvy expert has shared how to make £40 a month from your Christmas shopping. 

Christmas Day is fast approaching and that means many of us will be will already be preparing for the big day. 

Holly Smith is a shopping expert and has saved loads by being smart with her shopping

Shopping expert Holly Smith, who posts hundreds of tips on her Instagram page, shared her best tips for making the most of your spending this Christmas with The Sun. 

First and foremost, if you’re making a plan for the big food shop for Christmas Day, then consider downloading shopping apps. 

Holly said the main ones she uses are GreenJinn, Shopium, Checkoutsmart and Smash, which have a lot of seasonal offers and coupons.

So, from now up until Christmas time, look out for festive-related offers such as discounts on stuffing, cranberry sauce and trimmings. 

Holly, who is a mum of three, gets about £30 to £40 cashback from these apps each month.

That could save you nearly a week’s shopping worth of food, or maybe a present or two so it’s definitely worth doing.

For some of these apps, you’ll need to first buy the item at full price – you’ll know which item to get as you’ll see it in the app.

Make sure you keep your receipt as you’ll then have to scan it in the app to prove you’ve purchased the item that is on offer.

The money will then be refunded to your bank account. 

These apps also advertise any products that brands want shoppers to try.

You’ll get a 100% refund if you buy some of them – just make sure you have your notifications switched on so you know about it. 

These could be any type of products, from new ones to limited editions so make sure you’re keeping an eye out.

Of course, sometimes the offers might not be for items you’re after, but it’s always worth making use of it when you can.

What kind of shopping the apps are good for

The apps could come in handy as Holly said many are embarrassed to get out their paper coupon in-store for fear of being judged.

If that’s you, you’ll be pleased to know that you can make use of the discount at home and through your phone.

Holly said: “With these digital apps, you don’t have to let anyone know you’re using a coupon because you’re buying the product, and then scan the receipt when you get home.

“There’s no excuse to not get one.”

Checkoutsmart is good for alcohol, so if you’re hosting this Christmas then this might be a good tool. 

While GreenJinn is good for healthy foods such as packs of salad and loose fruit and veg. 

There isn’t really a set day Holly said we should do our food shopping, except for of course the yellow sticker shop on Christmas Eve. 

It just depends on what days each store will have specific offers on and whether those offers cater to you – so keep checking. 

Other ways to save on Christmas purchases

Don’t do your festive shopping all at once

Another bit of advice Holly gave is to not do your Christmas food shopping all at once. 

This is because supermarkets can rotate which items are on offer. 

For example, Tesco may have discounts on Paxo stuffing while Morrisons may have offers on cranberry sauce. 

It’s worth looking around if you can. 

“If you can, look in stores such as Iceland or Farmfoods. A lot of people just overlook it,” Holly said.

These bargain supermarkets can often have more expensive products such as Cadbury’s chocolate bars or even Yankee candles on offer, and for a fraction of the price.

For clothes shopping, there isn’t a set day where shoppers can get the best offers, Holly said.

Just keep an eye out on sales and follow the brands you like on social media as they often post discounts on there. 

Holly said: “Even if it’s not a massive sale. Boots will have things like £10 when you spend £60 – there’s always something.”

Keep an eye out for toy events

If you’re wanting to find deals on toys, Holly said there are “toy events” supermarkets like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda host. 

These are where they’ll put lots of their items on for sale.

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to plan ahead for these though. 

Holly said this is because if a supermarket finds out that its competitor is hosting a toy event, then others may follow.

If your kids haven’t already, Holly said to ask them to write a letter to Father Christmas now.

This will give you a better opportunity to get their wish list items on sale and during these big discount events. 

As always, you should avoid to buy things you weren’t planning to or don’t need.

Just because it’s on offer doesn’t really mean you’ve saved cash.

Holly also recommended using days like Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Boxing Day to purchase those bigger items, or items you’ve been put off buying.

For example, the supersaver said she’d put off buying a new TV after hers partly broke in May this year.

Instead, she waited until a big sale was on and it saved her hundreds of pounds.

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