Keeping the Holiday Season Merry and Bright

Simple tips from experts on ways to save time and money this year so you can focus on what matters


Everything from your Thanksgiving table to your holiday guest list could look different this year due to COVID-19. Amid the changes, “things can be extremely overwhelming,” says Tia Mowry, actress and author of the cookbook “Whole New You: How Real Food Transforms Your Life for a Healthier, More Gorgeous You.” Yet she and personal finance expert Farnoosh Torabi assure us there are still ways to find joy during the upcoming months. Together they have come up with ideas to save time and money this year, and ultimately make your holidays merry and bright. 

Streamlining Store Trips

Rather than trekking from one retailer to another, purchasing items in a single store could save you hours of time. “I love shopping at places like Walmart, because I see it as a one-stop shop to get everything that you need,” Mowry says. Before heading out, you might make a list of the ingredients you’ll want for Thanksgiving dishes or holiday baked goods. You could also note the presents you’d like to purchase for the people in your life. If you need a table centerpiece, a string of holiday lights or a door decoration, you might jot that down too. 

Focusing on one retailer can also help you maximize your budget over the holidays. If you have a Capital One Walmart Rewards Card, you’ll receive 5% cash back on Walmart.com purchases, including on contactless pickup or delivery.  You will also earn 2% cash back when you shop at Walmart stores. “The thing I just love about the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card is that while you’re shopping, you can earn cash,” Mowry says. 

Shopping Online

To avoid crowds and save even more time, you can browse the internet for your holiday list. “Online shopping is definitely something I’ve been doing a lot of this year,” Mowry says. With the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card, you will earn 5% back when shopping at Walmart.com.

Shopping online also presents further ways to save money. “Before you click ‘check out’ online, be sure you’re not leaving any discounts on the table,” Torabi says. Try the Capital One Shopping digital tool, which does the work by automatically testing available coupon codes, applying the best available and displaying the total amount of savings for the customer.

Simplifying Gift-Giving and Wrapping

Your gift list might include more people than just your family and friends, such as teachers, co-workers and neighbors. If you’re anticipating giving all of them the same gift this year, try buying the item in bulk. Doing so could help stretch your budget. “From bottles of wine to chocolates or stocking stuffers for your kids, buy a handful,” says Torabi. “Often retailers will provide a 10% or 15% discount if you buy several of one item.”

If you plan to spend an evening wrapping gifts for others, there may be ways to streamline other tasks to save time. You might grab food to go at your favorite restaurant, or you could order a meal to arrive at your doorstep—either way, you’ll earn 2% cash back when you use your Capital One Walmart Rewards Card. That way, you can sit down with your family to eat without having to spend time preparing a meal. 

A decorated Thanksgiving table with traditional dishes prepared by Tia Mowry

Serving Family Dishes

Preparing foods that your family has enjoyed during previous holidays can help create a sense of continuity despite the different atmosphere this year. “Tradition is so important to me,” Mowry says. Her Thanksgiving menu includes dishes that have appeared at her family table for years, such as collard greens. “My great-grandmother taught my grandmother how to make greens, and then my grandmother taught my mother, and my mother taught me,” Mowry explains. This season, she plans to make those family-driven recipes and serve them at her Thanksgiving table. “I know the times have changed, but I want to keep those traditions going,” she says.

Throughout the holiday season, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card provides ways to earn rewards on your holiday shopping. And combined with these holiday shopping tips, it can also help simplify the experience. This, in turn, can allow you to spend that extra time with those you love—however you see them this year. 


Learn more about Capital One’s response to COVID-19 and resources available to customers. For information about COVID-19, head over to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Government and private relief efforts vary by location and may have changed since this article was published. Consult a financial adviser or the relevant government agencies and private lenders for the most current information.

We hope you found this helpful. Our content is not intended to provide legal, investment or financial advice or to indicate that a particular Capital One product or service is available or right for you. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, consider talking with a qualified professional.

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