City Survivors: Boost your coffers over Christmas

6 December 2016

The ‘C’ word. Whether it fills you with dread or gets you rushing out for tinsel to Deck the Halls with, there’s no escaping the fact Christmas is approaching.

But while some of you may Wish it Could be Christmas Everyday, this isn’t the best idea for your wallet. Most users say they will spend between £251 to £500 as a household on Christmas – a big enough sum for just one day of the year, let alone every day.

So if you’re hoping to have a little extra cash in the coffers compared to Last Christmas, we have a few easy ideas to put a Jingle Bell Rock in your step this festive season.

1. Earn cashback on shopping

Many cards take between seven and 10 days to arrive once you’ve successfully applied, so if you’re thinking of getting a cashback credit card now could be a good time to do it if you’re quick.

Top picks include American Express’s Platinum Cashback card (28.2% APR representative, including the £25 annual fee), where you’ll earn 5% on spending up to £2,500 in the first three months – the rate drops to up to 1.25% after, depending on how much you spend.

Fans of certain retailers can also get cashback cards from John Lewis, Sainsbury’s Bank, and Asda. Just remember to repay them in full each month and don’t exceed your credit limit. See our best buys, which are updated weekly.


And if you’re buying online, check for cashback on TopCashback and Quidco first.

2. Pick up loyalty points

It goes without saying that if you have loyalty cars, such as Tesco Clubcard or Boots Advantage card, use these whenever you spend – you’ll be grateful for a boost to your finances in the New Year.


3. Sell your festive wares

If you’re a dab hand at baking, why not make mince pies or mulled wine and sell it at local markets or fayres? The same goes if you’re a sewing bee who can knit woolly hats or you’ve got a skill for creating costume jewellery – items that would make great Christmas gifts.

Alternatively, sell your arts and crafts online at and Just ensure the cost of making goods doesn’t outweigh the amount you sell them for and check if there is a fee to sell your items – Etsy and Folksy both charge listing fees and take a percentage of the sale.


4. Sing for your Christmas supper

If you’re a talented singer or musician, get down to your local town centre and busk. It’s the festive season, so Christmas carols are likely to go down a treat and people may be a little more generous with their cash. Do check with your local council whether you need a busking licence.

5. Sell your unwanted presents and gift vouchers

If you receive gifts you don’t want, consider selling them on eBay or Facebook. eBay charges a listing fee if you sell more than 20 items a month and it takes a percentage of sales, while Facebook is free.

Alternatively, Zeek enables you to sell unwanted gift vouchers. You can set your own asking price, which has to be at least 10% below the face value. Zeek will take 7% in commission with a £3 minimum fee.