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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Save the Most Money on Holiday Dinners

Christmas Dinner image 
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Last year I wrote about how I got my Thanksgiving Dinner for free. Check it out HERE!

This year I'm fortunate enough to not be in charge of the whole meal, but I am thinking ahead for Christmas just in case. As I said last year, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual study the average cost for 10 guests to eat turkey day dinner with all the fixings is $43.47. (Source )

Now, $43 might not seem like that much money, but to me there is no sense paying full price when you can get things cheaper! Here are my tips to save the most money possible on holiday dinners:

- Coupon, coupon, coupon! Before you buy anything for dinner, see if there is a coupon for it! Hot Coupon World Coupon Database has become my favorite go to site to find out if a coupon exists for the items on my shopping list. From what I've seen they are really good at updating the site for new coupons available and often have links to print them directly from your computer.

- Go generic! Often times generic tastes just as good as the original and if you don't have a coupon for the brand name product this can mean a savings of 20-50% per item!

- Don't be afraid of frozen veggies and fruits! Sure, it is nice to have fresh stuff, but when frozen fruits and veggies can be so much cheaper, why not go that route? Check out the prices of both and then make the best decision for your budget.

- Change your meal! You don't have to make the most expensive side dishes in the cookbook. Write down everything you want to fix and then think of possible back up ideas in case your side dish choices are too expensive.

- Make it from scratch! Yes, it's time consuming, but sometimes making stuff from scratch can save you boatloads of cash.

- Look for meal deals. I saw Winn Dixie once had a deal where purchasing a turkey there got you free bread, corn and some other stuff too.

- Go online before you go out. Check the websites for your favorite grocers and see who has the best deals on the items you need. No sense driving all over town to check prices and wasting all that precious gas.

- Hunt for BOGOs. Every grocer I've seen is offering buy one get one free deals on stuffing, corn, gravy, etc... Get one for the holidays and then save the other for another meal. Just because you buy it now doesn't mean you have to use it right away.

- Take advantage of price match offers. Wal-Mart price matches local grocer ads for a lot of products. If you are only wanting to go one place, this might be your best option. Just be aware that Wal-Mart is kind of annoying about coupons sometimes. I also have heard they don't honor BOGO deals...

- Ask for help! There is no need to let anyone know that you are trying to bring down your costs of your meal. Ask folks that are coming to bring side dishes. If anything they will just assume they are helping you save time and they might be grateful for the chance to show off a dish.

I hope this post helps you think of ways to bring your holiday dinner costs down.

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