How to Manage the Holidays after Retirement

As Andy Williams once said ‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year’ and now that you’re retired, it’s about to get even better.

Like most things in your life, the holiday season is going to be a little bit different once you’ve retired. Your first holiday season away from work is going to see you have a lot more time than you are used to.

With the stress of work now firmly behind you, you can finally take a deep breath and enjoy the holiday season in the way that you deserve to.

Work out your budget

One of the biggest changes you will experience after your retirement is a financial one. While you may have a healthy retirement fund, the amount of money that is coming in is not going to be the same as it was when you working and you will likely have to adjust your budget as a result.

The holidays can be a time of overspending, and while there is absolutely nothing wrong with spoiling your grandchildren, perhaps you should have a conversation with your children or other adults in the family about what you all plan to spend on one another during the festive period.

Not budgeting correctly, especially in your first year of retirement, can have a large impact on your long term economic future, so be sure to make sure you sit down and plan your holiday spending wisely.

One option that a lot of retirees decide to take up is creating your own gifts for your family members. Getting involved in arts and crafts and taking up a hobby like knitting can be an excellent way to spend your time and these kinds of gifts are often much more sentimental and meaningful than ones that you have simply bought from a shop.

Enjoy the extra-time with your family

Most people make plans for their holidays based around their work schedule, and depending on what job you worked in, this can be incredibly difficult. Once you have retired though, you have an abundance of spare time and as such, can dedicate your holidays to the people who matter most – your friends and family.

Once you’ve retired, you can make the most of the people in your family and the holiday period. You may be able to watch the grandkids more and spend more time with them or you may be able to take a Christmas getaway that you would not normally have the time to do.

Travel planning

One of the biggest things that you should plan ahead for is the potential changes to travel during the holiday season. A lot of seniors may choose to move away after they retire and that can cause some issues when it comes to the holidays. If that is the plan, then you should plan for these situations in advance and hopefully, this won’t cause too many issues later down the line.

Likewise, if your parent or loved one is staying near home after retirement, then you should factor in how they are going to be involved in the holiday season. If they are unable to drive, then you should figure out a way to make sure that they see their family members, especially their grandchildren during the festive period.

Communication is key

As with anything that requires a degree of planning, communication is key. If this is the first year of your retirement, you may want to start a new holiday tradition or you may have to make several changes if you have changed location or are part of a retirement community.

Making sure that you and your family keep each other in the loop is the key to a successful holiday season. Make sure you own a suitable phone for seniors and that you make regular calls to make sure all arrangements are in order and running smoothly.

Create some new traditions

Retirement is one of the biggest changes you will make in your life and it presents you with the opportunity to make changes elsewhere as well.

Now that you have more free time, you can spend more time with your family and if you’re lucky enough to have some, your grandchildren.

Making new memories with your grandchildren is important and you can also use your retirement and all of the free time that comes with it as a chance to make some special new holiday traditions to share with them. Here are some ideas of new holiday traditions you could make:

  • Decorating your house: Now that you have more free time on your hands, you can really get into the holiday spirit and decorate your house ready for the holidays. This doesn’t have to be an expensive tradition as you and your family can create the decorations together using arts and crafts.
  • Christmas movie night: Sometimes the simplest things can be the most effective. Inviting your family, especially your grandchildren, over to your house to partake in a movie day can be an excellent idea. Everyone gets to choose their favorite movie and you can spend the entire day in front of the fire watching great movies and eating snacks.
  • Making holiday sweaters: Holiday-themed sweaters are all the rage these days but instead of going out and buying them from your family, why not make them yourself? Having your family all gathered around the table for Christmas dinner while wearing holiday sweaters you have made for them can be a great sight and is also a great way of creating memories.
  • Making a Christmas list: Depending on the age of your grandchildren, sitting down and writing a Christmas list with them can be an absolute delight. If the parents are busy they may not have the time to do this with them and in an age where everyone is so reliant on technology, taking the time to sit and write with your grandchild can be very rewarding.
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