Tips for the Unemployed to Survive the Holiday Season

As the nearly 13.9 million jobless Americans prepare for the holiday season Consolidated Credit offers advice and tips to minimize stress and focus on having a positive attitude.

Many people underestimate the time it will take to financially recover from a job loss. People continue living a lifestyle that they had while they were working and often use credit cards to fill in the gaps. Debts can quickly add up, becoming unmanageable if it takes longer than expected to land a job at their previous pay.

Consolidated Credit’s holiday unemployment survival guide:

    • Apply for a seasonal job – According to, hiring managers expect to employ an average of 4 seasonal workers this year, nearly a 5 percent increase from last year. Seasonal employees are expected to earn roughly $10.00 per hour, which is unchanged from last year.


    • DIY – When it comes to holiday decorating, winter wardrobes, and festive dinners stick to doing-it-yourself. Make your own decorations, revamp older winter clothes, and make meals out of what is already in your pantry.


    • Freelance -If you’re unable to find a full-time job, consider other options such as freelance work. Register on free websites like, where employers can connect with freelancers.


    • Utilize local non-profits – Most communities have food and toy banks to help those in need during the holidays. For help with holiday meals or toys for children, we recommend people reach out to trustworthy organizations like the Toy Industry Foundation. Contact your local church or charity bank to see if you can get assistance.


    • Don’t stress – When we counsel people, we train them to focus on the positive aspects of their lives like their health, family, and friends. Keeping a positive attitude is essential to finding a job in this economy. The idea is that positive outlook will shine in job interviews helping the person land a new job sooner.


    • Volunteer – Being unemployed is hard to deal with, but we encourage people to realize that their situation could be worse. Volunteering at a nursing home or homeless shelter often makes people appreciate what they have and helps them to refocus negative energy. This is also a great way to show support for the local community.


    • Network – The holidays offer many networking opportunities. Attending holiday parties, gatherings, and church events could be the key to finding a new job.


    • Don’t charge holiday expenses – Spending using credit cards when unemployed will only dig you deeper in debt. In the long run, holiday gifts and meals could end up costing you up to 30 percent more than what was originally paid after interest and penalty charges are added on.


For more tips and advice to surviving a layoff and making it through the holidays without getting into debt, read our free educational booklets.
Consolidated Credit founded in 1993, is one of the nation’s largest credit counseling organizations in the country and has helped over 5 million people with financial issues. Their mission is to assist families throughout the United States in ending financial crisis and solving money management problems through education and professional counseling.

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April Lewis-Parks
Director of Education and Public Relations

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