How to Stop Buying Gifts Without Being a Scrooge

Skipping Christmas


NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- You don’t have to be a Scrooge or a Grinch to want to skip Christmas.

The average person spends hundreds of dollars on merchandise over the course of the holiday season, and that’s money some cash-strapped Americans just can’t afford to throw around in a tough economy. Others may have more philosophical objections – maybe they feel gift-buying is against the true spirit of the holiday, or perhaps they’ve been inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement to boycott the trappings of capitalism. Still others may be sick of spending hundreds at the mall and getting gifts they hate and would prefer to just buy something nice for themselves.

Unfortunately, skipping Christmas is easier said than done, and it may be tough to explain to close family and friends that you’d prefer not to give or get gifts this year. And even if you clearly explain to them that you don’t plan to engage in gifting, there’s still a chance some friend or relative will get you something anyway (and be offended you didn’t reciprocate). So if you want to buck the consumerism trend and cut out gift-giving altogether, here’s how to do it as tactfully as possible.