EBS Holiday Gift Guide

How to get someone really cool gifts at affordable prices.

Nicky here from DC! I really take pride in being great at picking out gifts. One of my love languages is literally gift giving (no clue what I’m talking about? Click here). I find it heartwarming to think that someone took the time to think about me and what I like. Not to mention, people are spending their hard-earned cash to bring you a little joy. I equate it to someone working several hours to afford something just for you. If you’ve ever been through a financial rough patch, you know the weight it carries.

While we’re on that topic, every coin counts during the holidays! There are so many people to gift, you need the right resources and plan to get the most bang for your buck. Here are a few tips:


Wouldn’t it be nice to start the new year with some funds? The only way to do this is to budget properly for gift expenses. Avoiding credit cards, you’ll need to drop directly into your checking and/or savings account. Whichever account you choose, deduct from the balance:

  • Bills

  • Monthly savings transactions

  • Contingency budget for outings (because you will go out for the holidays)

Whatever is left is up for grabs to spend on gifts. If you’re looking at that number and panicking, don’t. Keep reading.


Wholesale is great for purchasing gifts for coworkers or extended family.

When you buy wholesale, you can buy numerous (same or similar) products for one flat rate. This is what retailers do to create their inventory. Google “wholesale near me” and find a seller (in person or online).

Another option to consider, and this is a wild one, is to buy an Amazon pallet. Essentially, whenever you return something to Amazon and it’s already opened, they don’t resell the products. Instead they pack them up in huge shipping pallets by type (think electronics, fitness, beauty) then ship them to liquidators. The pallets are then auctioned. Sure some of the stuff is broken, but most is completely new! Many people have cited receiving three times the value in products than they actually spent in purchasing the pallet


Groupon is great because you can buy both experiences and products. They’re also known for selling bundles in each category. For example, four pairs of earrings or a couple’s massage. One time, between my siblings and I, we bought my parents an all-expense paid trip to Costa Rica!


Tap into your talents and create your gifts! Maybe you’re a great painter or chef; whatever it is you’re good at or love to do can always be shared as a gift. Ooooor hit up YouTube and learn how to make something bueno, bonito, barato (good, pretty, cheap).

IOU Experiences

Look, cash flow is complicated. It’s very common to be(come) broke during the holidays. When in doubt, just give out IOU experiences. Something I’ve done in the past is write letters to my loved ones sharing how much I appreciate and value them and that I’d like to take them out to eat or to the movies. Hack: plan events by paycheck. AKA if you’ll be better funded in March, look for a movie premiere, restaurant opening, or festival in March!

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