If you are planning to host Thanksgiving at your house this year but money is tight, the first thing you should do is sit down and make a budget.
In this post, I will share with you how to make a budget for your Thanksgiving Meal this year.
These tips will help you stop going crazy with your spending just because it is a holiday, and will also prevent you from buying more groceries than you need and then having the food go to waste.
Make A Budget For Thanksgiving Meal
Budgeting in advance can help you spread the cost of Thanksgiving over several months, not just one.
Estimate how many people you will have visiting on the day itself. If your relatives will also be staying with you, factor in the cost of all meals, transportation, entertainment and more while they will be with you.
Tips: Use the Guest List included in our Thanksgiving Planner Printables to help organize your guest list.
Make a List of Essentials
Menu planning is one of the best ways to make sure you have everything you want but don’t go overboard.
Decide on whole turkey or turkey breast (which will be a lot more expensive) and side dishes.
Plan your leftovers as well, such as stock made from the boiled-up bones of the turkey carcass/es at the end of your feast.
Other items you might need to buy include decorations, party ware, and so on. Then there is alcohol and other beverages, which can really start to add up if you’re not careful.
By making a list, you can ensure you have everything you need. You can also do your research, comparison shop, clip coupons, and plan ahead by buying food when it is cheapest – usually harvest time in the autumn.
Tips: Use the Decorating Plan included in our Thanksgiving Planner Printables to help plan for your home decoration ideas.
You can also pick up bargains at farmer’s markets or local orchards and farms. The food will be fresher and not drowned in pesticides.
Autumn fruits and vegetables are cheap, tasty side dishes that can really stretch your holiday meal, and your budget too.
Use coupons and look out for special deals at services like Fresh Direct, which often give discounts at this time of year to get you to try their service.
The prices can be good if you shop the sales, and of course, it is convenient to have your groceries delivered.
Check out all the store flyers in your area, and clip coupons from the Sunday papers.
Make a list of everything you want to buy, estimate the cost in round figures, and start setting aside that money.
Avoid the temptation to use credit cards; if you don’t pay off your bill before it is due, you will end up paying interest, which means losing any savings you might have gained from your bargain hunting.
Tips: Use the Shopping List, Thanksgiving Dinner Menu and Recipe journal included in our Thanksgiving Planner Printables to help organize your shopping and plan the Thanksgiving meal.
As you shop, cross things off your list and note down how much you have spent. The trick is to get all the things on your list and hopefully spend less than you have budgeted for.
Other Ways to Save
One final way to save is to suggest everyone bring a dish to the festivities.
Most people have a specialty item they love to cook, and it takes the burden off you and your stove or oven, as well as your wallet.
Make a list of what people promise to bring so there is no overlap. If they can’t cook, suggest they bring a beverage – they never go stale.
Do you have other budgeting ideas for Thanksgiving meal? Comment below and share with us!