What is Boxing Day?

December 26, 2007

red presentWhat is Boxing Day? Wikipedia states: "Boxing Day is a traditional celebration, dating back to the Medieval Ages, and consisted of the practice of giving out gifts to employees, the poor, or to people in a lower social class." You can read more about the history of Boxing Day here:


What's Boxing Day mean to thrifty folks, the people who are trying to save time and money? That's a more relevant question. Below are a few answers.

Countdown to Christmas: One of our favorite thrifty tips is "Buy Christmas presents all year round". It's a really good tip! The financial crunch that many are suffering from right now can be avoided, or minimized, by thinking ahead and starting to buy for Christmas now (or as soon as possible). I like to make a list of all the people I intend to buy Christmas presents for next year and I carry it around in my wallet. At the very least, it's a great time to buy small presents, the kind you might give to co-workers or use at a gift exchange. While Boxing Day may not be the best day to go shopping, if you can handle the crowds you will most likely find some amazing deals.

Decorating for Less: The best time to buy Christmas decorations is right after Christmas. Ornaments, lights, dancing Santa dolls go out of style really quickly after Christmas and often are deeply discounted.


Taking Gifts Back or Exchanging Them: In general, there is a one or two week time period after Christmas in which stores have extra staff to handle returns and exchanges. It's also the easiest time to return something without a receipt.

Candy: Just like after Halloween, Easter and Valentines Day, you can get chocolate in various shapes and sizes for really cheap right after Christmas. You can freeze it and it use it in future baking projects. I am not certain how long you can freeze chocolate for but I'd imagine a few months at the very least, does any know? (Send mail to or post online)

Set Goals on Boxing Day (or shortly there after): It's easy to overspend over the holidays which makes for a tight financial start to the new year. It's a good time to set financial goals for the new year and evaluate how you spent money. What did you spend your money on and where can you spend less? And sometimes, where should you be spending more money or time? Rather than dwell on debt or money you may have wasted, spend time setting goals for the next year.


Post Your Thoughts on Boxing Day!: What items do you look for online after Christmas? Do you have a good way to ease the financial burden of the holidays? (Originally published 12/26/2000, revised 12/26/2007)

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