8 Ways to Save Money on Holiday Parties-Without a Potluck!


For many people, holiday parties can mean huge expenses.  One way to save on those expenses is to do parties pot-luck style, but if you are wanting to take on the expenses and skip the pot-luck, here are some tips for creating a memorable holiday party on a budget.


  • Skip all convenience foods and make things from scratch. Many products you buy for convenience are just money wasters as you are paying for the time you are not spending preparing the food. Buy vegetables and cut them yourself rather than purchasing a veggie platter from a store for instance and save 50% or more.
  • Use washable plates, utensils and glasses rather than buy paper products. Sure you may spend time washing up after the party, but depending on how many people you host a party for, the cost of paper products could be pretty big.
  • Co-host the event. You can share expenses and each others time and talent. Maybe one of you is an excellent baker and the other an amazing cook. Create a talent-focused list of tasks and dishes to make and you can get them done more efficiently and with less money out of each others pockets. One way to make the money spread farthest is to use common ingredients such as flour. If you are both going to be using it, you can both chip in on it’s cost for the party and preparations.
  • Don’t get too carried away with your menu. Since a lot of us have many parties and events to attend, consider that you don’t have to provide a large meal in order for the party to be a success. Small finger foods, cocktails and drinks such as punch may be enough. Just try to plan your party so it is not at a peak meal time (such as dinner or lunch) and you guests probably won’t be too hungry to begin with.
  • Keep decorations minimal and subtle. Simple tea-lights, garland and even streamers can be bought at many dollar stores.
  • Send invites out via electronic means. Facebook has easy ways to “create an event” and send out invites, allowing those on the guest list to RSVP, even.
  • Buy snacks in bulk from the bulk section at your favorite grocery store. Many stores offer expanded bulk snacks like pretzels, crackers, popcorn, candy and even cookies. Buying in bulk is the cheapest way to get a great price because you can control exactly how much you are getting and you are not paying for packaging.  Some of these bulk sections even offer name-brand snacks in bulk.
  • Save cash on spirits and alcohol by keeping it simple. Don’t offer too many choices. Simply providing low price champagne or hot buttered rum (making your own mix) can save you a lot. If people don’t like the offerings, let them know they are welcome to bring one of thier own to share. You could also leave your party alcohol free to avoid this expense altogether.

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