Average American spent $715 during holiday season

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Christmas is over, and now millions of Americans will soon be receiving their credit card statements in the mail for all those gift purchases. Many of us tend to overspend.

Between Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's, statistics show the average American spends $715 dollars on gifts, food and alcohol.

Between the travel, the tree, the lights, the gifts and food, it's rather easy to find yourself in financial trouble after the holidays.

Here are some tips that could help get you back on track: You can try to freeze all unnecessary spending after the holidays by taking credit cards out of your wallet so you aren't tempted to use them; switch to off-brand groceries; and even look for a part time job. Many retailers continue to need seasonal workers through January.

Overland Park economist Chris Butler says you can place a lot of blame on online retailers.

"It used to be before all of this online retailing, that to be enticed by a sale you either have to be reading the newspaper where it was announced or be at that store itself. Now you can be enticed 24 hours a day regardless where you are," he explained.

Many retailers are reaching out to customers via e-mail, through shopping applications like Retail Me Not or even though text alerts to let shoppers know about sales.

Forbes Magazine says it can take shoppers as long as three months to get their finances back on track after the holiday season.

The magazine's editors suggest opening a separate bank account now for next year's holiday spending.

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