Powercat Financial advises students to spend wisely during holidays

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Jordan Wegele | Collegian Stacey Newton, senior in hotel and restaurant management, spins the prize wheel at the Thrifty Gifting event held in the K-State Union on Tuesday afternoon. Powercat Financial Counseling organized the event to give students tips on saving and spending wisely during the winter holidays.

Powercat Financial Counseling hosted a Thrifty Gifting event Tuesday in the K-State Student Union to educate students on saving money during the holidays. The event included food, games and a
presentation on smart spending.

“[We want students to] spend
wisely and make informed desicions,” said DeLon Barbour, a member of
Powercat Financial and junior in psychology.

Kari Christensen, senior in family studies, led a presentation about budgeting for the holidays.

“It’s a happy and joyful time of year, and no one wants to think about debt,” Christensen said.

She encouraged students to set aside money each
month and open up a separate savings account to buy holiday gifts.

“Purchase gifts throughout the year, instead of the night before Christmas,” Christensen advised.

The
reins of the presentation were then handed over to Heather Gibson, senior in agribusiness, to discuss reducing costs during the season. Gibson’s tips included creating a detailed shopping list, making a budget and
setting a price limit for each gift.

“Gifts don’t have to be big-ticket items,” Gibson said.

Another way to save, she said, is to buy decorations out of season at steep discounts, to book plane tickets early and to bundle airfare, hotels
and rental cars if possible.

Sydney Henderson, senior in
agribusiness, discussed the dangers of
credit cards during the holdiay season. The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 has
made it more difficult for students under 21 to get a line of credit
without a cosigner or proof of significant income, according to Henderson.

“Signing up for a bunch of department store credit cards all at once can knock your credit score down,” Henderson said.

The
presentation ended with peer counselors advising students to plan
ahead and create budgets to make the holidays less stressful.

Attendees
then participated in a Christmas-themed game of Family Feud with prizes that included Country Stampede tickets and gift certificates to Quik Cats.

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