Can You Celebrate Thanksgiving on the Cheap?

You love Thanksgiving. You love the festive atmosphere, the family bonding and, of course, all of the feasting. The only problem with this holiday is how much of a dent it puts in your bank account. Is there a way that you can celebrate on the cheap? Read ahead to find out. 

Stay Home

You have relatives in another state that you’d love to visit for the holidays, but if you can’t afford to travel to them, don’t. While meeting up for the special occasion will make you feel great on the weekend, it could make you feel terrible once it’s over and you take a look at your bank account. You could have a drained savings account and a high credit card balance that you’ll struggle to pay down for months. 

You can still find ways to bond with your relatives from a distance, like using video chat apps or playing online games together.

Host a Potluck 

If you’re hosting Thanksgiving this year, you don’t have to tackle the menu all on your own. Do a potluck! Ask other guests to bring appetizers, side dishes and desserts. You can handle the main dishes and, of course, provide the event space. This should reduce your workload and your grocery spending. 

Ask for BYOB 

Alcohol can be one of the biggest expenses when you’re hosting. So, instead of taking on that hefty purchase all on your own, ask that guests bring whatever they intend to drink themselves. 

Get Savings on Your Groceries

Remember to use coupon and rebate apps while you shop for your recipe ingredients. These can really cut down your final costs once you get to the register. If your credit card offers rewards for shopping at certain supermarkets, take advantage of that. Those rewards could help you save in the future.  

Don’t Worry about Décor

You want your dining room to look like Martha Stewart decorated it herself, but that’s not necessary. People are still going to want to sit down, eat and talk up a storm when they arrive at your doorstep. They are not going to care whether you have festive candles or an elaborate arrangement of gourds on the table. All of these things will cost you money, and that money is better left unspent. 

Shrink Your Guestlist 

You don’t have to invite everyone you know to your home this holiday weekend. You especially don’t have to invite people who make the holiday harder to handle, like the uncle who wants to argue with everyone or the great-aunt who makes passive-aggressive comments about your cooking. Keep your guestlist to people that will make the holiday better — not worse. Shrink it down to a manageable and pleasant group. 

And remember, minimizing your guest list is a money-saver, too! The smaller the crowd, the less you’ll have to spend on food. 

The Consequences of Overspending

Overspending for the sake of Thanksgiving is going to fill you with regret once the holiday is over—especially if your budget is already tight. Doing this could push you into some serious financial mistakes, like overdrawing your checking account or racking up your credit card’s balance. At the very least, you might not have enough money to cover any surprise expenses that pop up before your next paycheck. So, if your car needs repairing or you need to rush your dog to the vet, you might not have enough to cover the bill. 

If you’re ever in this tough position, you could apply for a loan as a solution. You do not have to go to your local bank branch to do this. There are loans online that are legit, so you can stay home and fill out your application on your computer, smartphone or tablet. If you get approved for an online loan, you can use the funds to pay off the surprise expense in a short amount of time. Then, all you would have to do is follow a repayment plan.

Only use online loans for emergencies. Do not use them for other expenses, like Thanksgiving groceries or plane tickets.

You can celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday without wrecking your finances. You’ll finish the weekend feeling thankful that you saved your money!


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