5 tips to cut back on your holiday dinner spending

Between the spread you'll have for your family and the cookies you'll leave for Santa, you stand to shell out a lot of money from your checking account for food this holiday season.

Although the expense can be steep, a large feast is a tradition of many winter holidays. Some families decide on a potluck rather than burdening one person with supplying all the food, but the host typically provides some of the more costly items.

Whether you're contributing or spending a full day slaving over a stove to prepare an entire meal, you can save money on the groceries you'll need. Even with less money, you can ensure everyone is loosening their belts at the end of the night.

Here are five tips to spend less to prepare your holiday dinner this year:

  1. Look for sales. The holiday season is riddled with grocery store discounts for the foodstuffs you'll need for your feast. Check sale papers and online advertisements to determine the best days to shop for turkey, cranberry sauce and other items needed to create holiday staples. Just be sure to comparison shop before you head to the store to get the best deals. This may mean going to multiple stores, but the savings can be worthwhile.
  2. Shop early. Sometimes, the best sales happen far in advance of the holidays. If you see an item you'll need for an affordable price, don't pass those savings up because your dinner isn't for another two weeks. Grab nonperishable items and anything that you can store in your freezer until you need it. Not only can this tip save you money, but it can also lessen your chances of running to the store at the last minute when the lines are long.
  3. Check out generic and store brands. Although certain name brands are popular, don't ignore generic and store-brand foods. In many cases, they offer the same quality at a lower price.
  4. Buy discount alcohol. Head over to your local warehouse retailer and grab large quantities of alcoholic beverages at a low price. You can get some of the more expensive options with a discount or walk away with a large case of your favorite value brands.
  5. Scale back on nonessentials. Do you really need cake, cookies and pies for dessert? Although a large spread is common, don't overspend for your holiday dinner by purchasing more than your guests will eat or take home.

For more information about smart ways to manage your finances, contact Landmark Bank.

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