Monday, December 13, 2010

Tips for Saving on a Christmas Dinner

With Christmas fast approaching and the economy suffering, you might be searching for ways to conserve a little cash during the holiday season. You want to stick to a budget but at the same time, you don’t want to look like Scrooge, skimping on the essentials.

Christmas is a time for caring and sharing, and it just wouldn’t be the same without a Christmas dinner. If you want your dinner to be fun and friendly, but still stick to your cost savings plan, here are some quick and easy tips on how to save money during your Christmas dinner.

Here are some simple ways to save on your food and drink budget, as well as make what you purchase go further.

• Have each guest bring a food dish.
• Have guests bring their own alcohol.
• Save leftovers.
• Pass on alcohol altogether.
• Serve punch rather than individually portioned and more expensive drinks.
• Buy generic.
• Buy in bulk.
• Prepared in advance and buy your supplies and food items when they are on sale.
• Skip the soda.
• Make your own snacks and hors d’oeuvres.

Dinner is more than just food and drinks. There are all the supplies that go into decorating and making your dinner more than just a quick bite to eat. Here are some ways to make efficient use of your party supplies as well as some ideas of what to buy to keep your costs to a minimum.

• Use your own glassware rather than costly paper/plastic products.
• Send invites over email to avoid buying paper invitations or consider make your own.
• Create your own party decorations.
• Use party decorations from last year’s party.
• Borrow party supplies you don’t have from friends.
• Buy Christmas decorations at post-Christmas sales for next year’s party.

Here are a few extra tidbits and tips that can make your party efficient while saving you a buck or two in the process.

• Keep the thermostat low since large parties tend to generate more body heat.
• Turn lights off in unused rooms during the party.
• Close doors to unused rooms during the party to save on heating costs.
• If it’s snowing, shovel your own walks and driveway rather than paying someone else to do it.

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