With so many schools returning from spring break, graduation is just around the corner, and that means travel and gifts. If you haven’t saved up for it, then odds are you are looking at a couple of months before the big event. That means you do have time to save up to help make the day something special.

–        Cut back on things like food, driving, and unnecessary expenses and put that money into a short-term savings account for the graduation.

–        Find out what the graduate plans to do after the big day, then research ways to help get the young adult ready for the next phase of life. If the grad is going from high school to college, find out what kinds of things are needed for the new living quarters. If the grad is entering the real world, dressy clothing (or gift cards to a shop with business wear) are incredibly helpful. If the next phase is a combination of work and more school, you will have a lot of different options to choose from, such as helping buy books. Make sure you know the next phase of the graduate’s life before making any purchases.

–        Research the items you plan to purchase. With a month or two still left, you have time to wait for a stellar sale so that you can give the graduate the most from your purchase. If you are buying stuff for the kitchen, you may be able to find a great deal that lets you get a set of dishes and some cookie sheets, instead of just the dishes. While it isn’t exciting, you are helping to get the graduate some critical things that will be hard to pay for so soon after leaving home.

–        Verify the graduation date and get your travel arrangements started. For many people, graduation means a road trip at the least. There will be a lot of people coming into town for the event, so you will want to make sure you have your reservations booked before everything fills up, otherwise you may end up with a really long drive from the outskirts of town to the big event.

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