Saving tips for the festive season

The festive season only comes around once a year. It’s December, the family is finally on holiday and it’s a special time for everybody to get together and share gifts and memories. Unfortunately many South Africans lose sight of their budgets over the festive season and inevitably end up overspending. In the panic to make sure they have enough money to buy the latest gadgets for their children or pay for an out-of-country trip, people may feel tempted to loan money from untrustworthy sources without investigating the pros and cons first, and could end up in financial trouble.


“Many people run to loan sharks over the festive season to make sure that they can afford a holiday, gifts and luxuries without thinking about the long-term financial implications and consequences,” says Derek Wilson, Head of, South Africa’s leading online insurance and finance comparison website. “There are countless loan sharks in South Africa who offer loans at high interest rates which often exceeds the limit set by the National Credit Regulator (NCR)*. They charge high fees, are not considered legal creditors, are not registered as a financial services provider and are not underwritten.”


Before you consider applying for a loan this festive season, here are some handy tips to make your Rands go further:


  1. Loan from a registered provider. Ensure that you apply for a loan from a registered, reputable South African financial services provider to avoid unnecessarily high interest rates.
  2. Budget, budget, budget. Go for affordability rather than desirability when it comes to gifts.
  3. Start saving early to spread the costs. Even if you just put R200 per month away for the duration of a year, you will have an extra R2400 come next December with which to buy gifts.
  4. Start a Festive Cupboard. Every time you see an appropriate gift for one of your family members or friends at a discounted price during the course of the year, buy it and store it until the festive season comes.
  5. Stay at home for one year, go on holiday the next. If you opt to stay home over December, you are bound to save a chunk of change. Rather save up for an out-of-season getaway, or commit to going away every second December only.


“Whilst comparing from loan providers online, also check that you are not paying too much on other financial products such as insurance,” concludes Derek. “Compare quotes and benefits from a range of SA providers across financial products such as Travel Insurance, Medical Aid, Car Insurance, Household Insurance, Buildings Insurance, Life Insurance and more. also compares quotes from a host of Personal Loans. This means that you can have the best interest rates and repayment term options at your fingertips in a matter of minutes.”


Established in 2007, is South Africa’s leading comparison website that helps consumers save money by comparing a range of SA providers across financial products such as car insurance, home insurance, life insurance, medical and more. Hippo is free to use and saves consumers the time and hassle of shopping around for the best deal since the website instantly retrieves real-time quotes from the different providers using the latest Internet technology. One in two people could save hundreds of Rands per month* on their car insurance alone by using to compare before they buy or switch to a new provider. makes money by simply charging its partners a fee when a customer chooses to find out more about their products. The results consumers see, and the order in which they are presented, is in no way influenced by the fee charges its partners or any other factors other than the price of the product being compared. 


For more information, visit us on, connect with on LinkedIn,, like us on Facebook,, and follow us on Twitter @Hippo_co_za and YouTube,

Hippo Comparative Services (Pty) Ltd is an authorized financial services provider (FSP number: 16357).


*Based on 2015 independent market research conducted by Kaufman Levin Associates.



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