It’s no secret that Christmas is an expensive time of year. You’ll probably be too scared to look at your bank balance after all of the gift-buying and food shopping is done, but if you play it smart and tap into the sharing economy there are many ways to avoid being broke over the festive season.
Liftshare is the UK’s largest ride-sharing community, but we’re not content with banging our own drum. That’s why we’ve been speaking with other sharing companies out there, so we can get a firm handle on how sharing can help improve many aspects of our daily lives beyond driving.
Here’s a selection of some of the great sharing sites out there, and how they can help give you the designer VIP Christmas you deserve.
From Kate Middleton’s favourite designers such as Beulah to gorgeous gowns worn by Tess Daley and Jessica Alba, Girl Meets Dress gives mere mortals access to the world’s hottest designer wardrobe. As well as a massive collection of demure dresses and fabulous frocks, the site also has accessories all to hire at a fraction of their high-rolling price tags. It’s also worth checking out Vinted – a site full of people selling their unwanted clothes for cheap. You can also sell that itchy Christmas jumper you didn’t ask for on Boxing Day.
Driving (or train-ing) home for Christmas can be the final straw that sends the overdraft into meltdown. But Liftshare gives users access to over 4 million empty car seats every week. A seat from London to central Oxford on 31st December is just £4.50 and the fare home again on 1st January is the same. No risk of rail replacement services, leaves on the line or overnight fare increases with Liftshare and members have recently reported being driven around in a brand-spanking new Range Rover with a white leather interior and the new Lexus CT 200h hybrid! The average saving with Liftshare is £987 per year (which is at least two pairs of Laboutins).
If 2015 is going to be the year of getting away for more fabulous weekends then there’s no need to compromise when it comes to accommodation. Airbnb is a little black book of places to stay from penthouses to beach-front houses and everything in between. A one bedroom flat attached to Edinburgh Castle between Christmas and New Year is just £65 per night or for a New Year to remember (and just £132 per night) a stylish apartment on Upper West Side New York is available right now.
Really want to make the Christmas table sparkle this year? Well there’s no need to fork out for trinkets that will gather dust for the other 12 months of the year. From Macaroon Towers to extra chairs, it is possible to borrow the essentials from neighbours via Rent My Items. To add a real sparkle wedding hire sites such as The Finishing Touch supplies breath-taking accessories that are for Christmas not for life!
For those who can’t quite stretch to Downton Abbey staffing levels a quick call to TaskRabbit could get those last minute Christmas jobs done in a matter of hours (rather than sleepless nights) for just a few pounds. From gift wrapping to collecting (and erecting) the Christmas tree it’s fast, simple and cheap.
If the idea of gathering around the TV with a drunken uncle and an over-stressed hostess is as appealing as a Brussel sprout sandwich then check out GrubClub. On December 25th a group of the hippest sharers in town will be getting together in a London penthouse for a memorable Christmas lunch – and everyone is invited. It’s also worth checking out Leftover Swap which – as the name suggests – lets you give away your unused food to those in need.
So there you have it folks: just a few ways that sharing sites can make your life easier and help keep money in your bank account. Give them a shot this Christmas and let us know what you think below.