Holiday Budget Tracker Envelopes – The BEST Way to Track Your Spending!

Oct 27, 2020 | Budgeting Tips, Holidays

Tired of wondering how much you’ve spent on each gift or holiday-related purchase? Use these holiday budget tracker envelopes and you’ll take the guesswork out of your holiday spending!

Holiday budget tracker envelopes from Fun Cheap or Free

You know those moments when you're all fired up and inspired, you write all sorts of lists and goals, and you're ready to conquer the world… then you go ahead and do a whole lotta nada about it because you just don't know where to start? Yeah, the story of my life sometimes. Don't worry kids, Mama J's here to help.

Since you're excited about not overdoing Christmas this year and know how much you should spend on your kids for Christmas, I've made it super-duper simple to manage it all! And yes, we even have free printables. You can thank me by way of peppermint eggnog and caramel popcorn, please.

*Note: When you click the links in this post, we may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.

The holiday budget tracker method I suggest using is the same concept as with tracking your weekly “grocery” and “other” budgets, so it won't be anything new (hooray!). Here's how it works…


Hand writing on holiday budget tracker from Fun Cheap or Free

Before you can start tracking your spending, you’ve got to set your budgets! Break your budget down rather than putting it in one lump sum. That makes it easier to track and much more realistic to actually follow. Here are the budgets that I would DEFINITELY suggest setting and sticking to!

  • Gifts – We have some great gift giving hacks to show you how much you should be spending and how to do it on a budget! We also go into great detail over how much to spend on your kids and family in our How Much to Spend on Christmas post. Whatever you decide, come up with a budget for each person you’ll be giving a gift to.
  • Stockings – It is so easy to spend a fortune on stockings, but I’m going to help you to put a stop to that! Check out our Christmas Stockings 101 post and see how we budget for our stockings, as well as get some cheap stocking stuffer ideas.
  • Travel – This is one of those areas that can really cost a lot. Learn how to budget for holiday travel so you can prepare for those costs as painlessly as possible.
  • Food – This can really be a large amount if you’re hosting guests for the holidays. Save some money and your budget on holiday food!
  • Supplies – This would include decor, paper plates, plasticware, napkins, and things like that. Pretty much anything you would need to entertain on a budget.

Getting these budgets figured out will seriously help you save buckets of money! So really, why wouldn't you take the time to get these worked out?!


Now that you have your budgets figured out, print out the holiday budget tracker printable on a blank white standard-sized legal envelope. Stick the envelope in your printer as it instructs you to do, adjust the size as needed, and voila! A perfectly crisp, cute, and organized little envelope for you to keep in your wallet or purse this season.

Print as many as you need to fit all of your budgets. Make sure you always keep them with you, whether you’re out “Christmas shopping” or not… You never know when you’ll stumble across a gift for someone that you hadn’t planned on buying. You always want to make sure you know exactly how much is left in each budget!


Budget envelopes on a counter, from Fun Cheap or Free

Now that you’ve printed out your envelopes, write each budget or person’s name on the side of each box. Then, write their total budgets for Christmas on the top line.

Every time you spend something, subtract from the total in that square. This allows you to always see how much you have remaining. When the budget is gone, it’s gone! If you realize you need more money, then return something that's not a necessity to the store (or take it out of your online shopping cart).


As with my regular envelope budgeting method, you can borrow from other budgets. Just do so sparingly! As mentioned in my How Much to Spend on Christmas post, your 2-year-old probably won't need more than $30 for Christmas, so the extra $20 can go to a teenager who needs more.

If you need to shuffle, that's okay. Just make sure every dollar is accounted for; it all has to come from somewhere. Trust me, it helps SO MUCH! Simple awareness will keep you from going overboard.


Receipts in an envelope, from Fun Cheap or Free

The most important tip? Don't forget the receipts!

Stick all receipts from anything you spend money on Christmas-wise in the envelope before you even finish putting your wallet away! Having all your receipts in one place makes everything, including returns, soooooo much easier. It's also a quick and easy way to ensure you wrote down everything you bought on your envelope.


No, not at all! I prefer to use the format of the holiday budget tracker printable. However, you can also use the envelopes in two other ways.

  1. Use one envelope, divided in half, to keep track of your two main holiday budget categories. Just make sure you give yourself a starting budget at the top, and then subtract any time you make a purchase. You can write down what you bought and what it was for next to it and keep up with your purchases that way.
  2. Use one envelope for each category. You will have more envelopes this way, but it's more organized if that’s your love language! There could be one for food, travel, supplies, gifts, and so on. You could even go so far as to have an envelope for each person’s gifts if you wanted to get that crazy!

The main focus is on you being able to keep up with all of your purchases and know how much is left in each budget. Besides that, you do you, girl! 😉

That's it! So easy! Let me know if you have any questions in the comments. 🙂

Holiday budget trackers on a counter, from Fun Cheap or Free =

If you need more help with your budget, let me remind you about my secret sauce online budgeting program, Budget Boot Camp! BBC is a super fun, 27-video program that makes money easy to understand. All you need is a screen and you're set!

And don't forget, if you don't save at LEAST what you paid for the program, I'll refund every dime. You've got nothing to lose (except your debt)! Use the code FCFBLOG to get an extra 10% off, because I love you 😉

Looking for more Christmas ideas?

Now, get out there are do some Christmas shopping, Freebs! May the force be with you.

Jordan Page Signature from Fun Cheap or Free


  1. Linda

    Great idea, unfortunately my Christmas shopping is done for the year, so will keep idea for next year. Happy Holidays!

    • FunCheapOrFree

      I admire you for getting it done early! Yes, Pin it to Pinterest and use it for next year. It also works well for anniversaries and birthdays. Thanks for reading! XOXO

  2. Dana Flippin

    I suppose you could do the same with gift cards. A certain “budget” on each card, so you’re not carrying around cash. 🙂

    • Fun Cheap or Free

      Oh, that’s a really good idea!!! 🙂

  3. Maria

    I absolutely adore this idea! Even better: I now know how to put all those free envelopes in my junk mail to good use!

    • Fun Cheap or Free

      Okay, that’s my favorite idea ever!!! 😉

    • Angelika R

      Oooh, this is brilliant!

  4. Jennifer

    I love these envelopes. This month and next month are so hard for me to budget wisely. I have 2 girls that both have birthdays in November. Then, December is tough for me because of Christmas and feeding our family. I blew the budget this month big time. Am so ready to get our money under control. Do you have a way to change the dates on the templates? My handwriting is horrible. haha

    • Fun Cheap or Free

      I feel for you! My best tip for you for next Christmas is to figure out your budget in January and then break that down into how much you need to save monthly. If possible, set that money aside each month and you’ll have it saved by the time December hits. Then you can pull from that saved amount for your holiday spending instead of it coming out of your regular monthly budget. You can read more about how to do all of that HERE. We don’t have a way for you to edit the templates, I’m sorry!


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