The year’s end is almost here, along with the long awaited Christmas holidays. Most South
African employees receive a Christmas bonus, and some receive a 13 th cheque. While this
makes you feel giddy about the extra cash, the big question is what are you actually going to
do with it?
Should I spend my bonus, or save it?
The best year-end or Christmas present you could give yourself is to be sensible with your
extra cash, and make carefully thought out choices that will keep on giving into next year. It
is sensible, and ultimately rewarding, if you put some of your bonus towards lessening your
debt. Consider using a decent portion of your bonus towards paying down any short-term
debt that you have. This can include credit cards, store cards or personal loans. These are
the most expensive, and should be paid off first as a result. Another sensible idea is to put
money aside that will be needed in January. School fees, school uniforms and stationery will
be needed and folk often feel the pinch of an unbudgeted for, but necessary expense in the
New Year. Every single budget has a place for unexpected expenses. However, this is often
neglected. Why not use some of your year-end bonus to add to, or start, an emergency
fund? When the geyser gives up or you need to have the crack in your windscreen repaired,
you’ll be able to dip into your emergency fund without denting your budget.
No work and no play…
You have worked hard the entire year and feel entitled to spending a bit of your bonus on
yourself. There is no reason why you shouldn’t – as long as it is done sensibly. There are 3
things to bear in mind when you get your happily received bonus: save a little, pay off some
debt, and remember January. Once you have made provision for the 3 items, you can plan
your money for Christmas shopping, holiday fun and relaxation. And enjoy the rewards of
hard work and careful budget planning.
To find out more about how to plan your Christmas bonus, speak to One Debt today.