Thanksgiving dinner is a feast of the harvest. And the dinner table has a special place in this celebration. It’s a time to come together with loved ones and share a meal that reflects the gratitude for our blessings, as well as our aspirations for what we hope for in the future.
So, how do you arrange Thanksgiving dinner within your budget?
As Thanksgiving approaches, many of us will be looking for ways to prepare a delicious meal without spending too much money. Well, it turns out that there are many ways to cut back on your expenses while still providing an impressive feast for all who are coming. Here are some smart tips to help keep your Thanksgiving dinner within budget this year!
1) Plan Ahead
If you plan then you will be able to purchase any ingredients that you need at lower prices. You can start by calculating the total expense which includes food, drinks, and additional activities such as decorations. Make sure that you include all of them in the calculation so that you don’t overspend on any one of them.
After calculating the expense, compare it with your budget and see if you can still afford it with your current earnings. If not then reduce your expenses by considering the following:
- Find out what dishes and drinks people will like and only buy those you find important! Limiting the number of dishes will also give you time to prepare the must-have meal from scratch hence saving some money.
- Hosting a potluck can come in handy when your budget is fixed. By inviting a few friends you will be certain that- with what you have- it will be enough for everyone. You will be in charge of decorations and preparing the turkey but with a load, off since your guests will be bringing in their favorite dessert to top on the meal.
- Avoid breaking the bank on expensive decorations. Thanksgiving is a once-a-year event, and it would be unnecessary to spend much money on decorations when on a budget! To cut the cost, you can invite a few friends over to help you with crafting and decorating.
- Find free sources of food- many grocery stores offer free turkeys, cranberry sauce, and potatoes for Thanksgiving dinners at no cost.
- Asking for what you may require from friends or family who might have traveled. Check if you can ask for things such as cookware or an extra place setting before deciding on fitting them into your budget. This may come in handy since it’s a one-time occasion!
3) Shop Smart
Many stores tend to give some shopping offers to their customers around holidays. During this time, you can find coupons that will lower the cost of groceries for Thanksgiving. Some tips on smart shopping include;
· Checking for coupon websites or on local newspapers
· Using the coupons responsibly
· Sign up for local store emails
· Organize a group and purchase in bulk from a wholesale club.
4) Be Creative
Cooking creatively can also help to lower your costs for Thanksgiving. Don’t feel pressured to cook a whole turkey the traditional Thanksgiving way. You can skip the bird and buy some other protein like ham or chicken, but for the turkey traditionalist- you can get a cut of the turkey meat such as the breast to cut down the expense!
Another way to cut the expense is to cook the meal with what’s available in your house- like canned cranberries, canned pumpkin puree, and frozen pie crusts. You can also use the pre-made pie crusts that are available at grocery stores nowadays.
5) Allow your Guests to Participate
On such an occasion most friends will be willing to help in any way they can. On a tight budget, let them bring what they can! If you have a written plan you can confirm what each guest will bring. For example, at times alcohol can burst out your budget. You can ask your visitors to bring their favorite drink. This will also help you ensure that everyone gets their favorite beverage while staying within your budget.
6) Invite a Few People
You might be tempted to invite as many relatives and friends as you can to enjoy this special day with them. However, if you are concerned about the expense of hosting a larger crowd it is better to consider inviting a small number of people.
Thanksgiving dinner is one of the most important family dinners for any American. It’s a time to appreciate all that there is in life and at the same time, enjoy some great food. Yet it can be daunting to plan for Thanksgiving dinner when you are on a tight budget. There are many ways to make Thanksgiving dinner more affordable for everyone involved. With good planning, you can have an affordable Thanksgiving dinner this year!