The Pesach spring holidays are happy and blissful yet often suggest flourishing expenses that may include hosting and cooking for considerable numbers of people, entertaining, extensive cleaning, purchasing new clothes, refreshing the home decor, gifts and family trips. The unique expenses of Pesach cover many areas, making it especially challenging to
keep control of one’s spending.
Planning, budgeting and monitoring is the ultimate way to hold together our overall spending.
Invest in refreshing your home decor paint only if necessary
Do we really need to refresh the paint on the walls of our home twice a year? Stop and think: Is whitewashing the walls a must for Pesach? If the answer is yes, then investing your time in researching for store that provides best value for money, buy all needed in place. Small paint repairs can easily become costly renovations therefore work with a pre-planned budget.
Save water whilst cleaning
Pesach cleaning is characterized by increased use of water. Keep in mind that saving on water is key for our pockets as well as for the environment. We therefore strongly recommend using a bucket rather than a hose especially when cleaning your balcony or car. We also recommend installing a water saving valve on your home taps and ensure washing machine and dishwashers are used only when full.
Make small Purchases
Preparations for Pesach generally involve intense shopping sprees resulting in hefty expenses. Despite the tempting pre-holiday offers, it is important to remember that there is no need to buy in masses and you can often settle for regular quantities.
As for groceries, there is a tendency to buy in quantities in preparation for Pesach. Remember, shops remain open during Hol Ha’Moed so there is no need to overdo in purchasing. Buy what is needed before Pesach, and fill in gaps as needed.
Plan entertainment ahead (if applicable)
Generate a hosting plans in advance, prepare menus and shopping lists for meals. List number of meals and people you are expecting. Do not go overboard with dishes and try to purchase essential quantities (don’t forget to take the list with you when shopping). Moderate the financial burden by asking guests to contribute to the meal by preparing a dish. Sharing and delegating to others creates an overall feeling of equality and delight.
Create lists and stick to them
Planning ahead and creating shopping lists will help make your holiday less stressful. Think where you can save this year: Whilst temping, particularly after a year of social distancing, do we really need to refresh our entire wardrobes? Is it necessary to invite the entire extended family or can we perhaps split meal preparation between families?
Prepare for your supermarket journey
Shopping at the supermarket becomes a complex journey during the holidays, which usually amounts to outrageous shopping bills. Arrive at the supermarket/ grocery stores equipped with a comprehensive list that includes everything desired. We suggest shopping ahead towards the start of the week, preferably during mornings. This way you will have more time to compare and become familiar with items and price variances between the stores.
Smart consumption – buy only what’s needed
In preparation for Pesach, there are many discounts and promotions, and one should be minded not to fall in to the temptation of spending just because “it’s on sale” unless of course involves an item already on your list.
Check expiry dates on many of the items offered at reduced prices as often these reflect product nearing the end of their life span.
Check out the lower shelves, where cheaper products are often located.
Check quantity in relation to price and do not temped by size alone.
Furthermore, we do not recommend making purchases in installments/ payments to avoid losing track of overheads. If you do use installments, make sure you keep a list and track expenses. After all, remember the need to buy food the week after Pesach, the following week and the weeks to follow.
Consult on Kosher for Pesach requirements
You may want to consult with your Rabbi prior to purchasing fancy kosher items since several products may not require a unique kosher for Pesach certification “Hechsher” –Many Rabbis claim items such as cleaning detergents, disposable dishes, paper items, cosmetics, medicines (not sweet) and more may not justify explicit kosher for Pesach certification. Consider purchasing brands that offer kosher for Pesach certification year round rather than buying exclusive Pesach brands.
Furthermore, there is no reason to dispose of such products already in your home, which can be stored for after Pesach.
Consult with your rabbi – you may find yourselves saving quite a bit.
Pre-budget for holiday gifts
When it comes to buying Pesach gifts, for the kids, spouse, parents, in laws, for hosts and course for the “Afikoman” such expenses tend to go beyond costs of standard gifts in one’s family budget. Therefore, gifts should categorically be budgeted in advance. Decide on the amount you want to spend and do not be tempted to spend above the set amount. Imagine the recipient of the gift, what they may appreciate and choose modest or ethical gifts accordingly. It is recommended to attach a replacement note if applicable. Often a small token with a warm note is far more meaningful.
As for the Afikoman – Plan how much you wish and can spend in advance. Whilst key to remain within the framework of a budget many families jointly agree with the kids on a gift or money.
Planning day trips and entertainment for the week
Chol Ha’moed is a great time for family trips yet there is no need to spend a month’s salary in order to enjoy family time.
If travelling away from home save and reduce on accommodation, by considering cheaper options to hotels, such as camping in the nature, renting apartments or even caravans.
Besides, it is important to understand that children are mainly looking for fun “experiences” and therefore rather than spending huge sums of money on costly attractions you can enjoy other activities that do not entail waiting in line or high expenses. Be creative, check out proposed activities on local council websites and if you do have a preference for paid attractions, check around with friends and family in search of discounts, coupons or other holiday concessions.