As you put together your shopping list for your Thanksgiving meal, prepare to pay a bit more. The cost of turkey has gone up compared to last year and so has the cost of the entire thanksgiving dinner.
The American Farm Bureau Federation just released a report that says Americans will spend 3% more on Thanksgiving groceries than they did in 2011 and 14% more than we did two years ago. If you’re planning on celebrating the occasion and footing the entire bill for a group of 10 people, you would have paid $43.47 in 2010, and $49.20 last year. This year, expect to pay $49.48… unless you employ some money-savings strategies. At roughly $1.39 a pound, buying a Turkey in 2012 is about about 4 cents per pound more expensive. A 16-pound turkey will cost about $22.23 this year, the AFBF said (66 cents more than last year).
Here are my favorite tips that I share each year when planning the big meal:
1. Share the workload – Don’t do Thanksgiving alone! It’s more economical to focus on a couple dishes to provide a larger group than to provide everything for just your family. This will save you plenty of time, too.
2. Don’t buy your turkey early. Procrastination does pay in some cases. The best turkey deals happen on the week of Thanksgiving. Compare all the local stores – even the ones you don’t regularly shop. Some stores offer incentives to buy your turkey from them. Some stores may even offer a free turkey if you purchase a set dollar amount in order to get the complimentary bird. Do some quick math along with some online research (figuring out where to use your coupons) and you can come out ahead by waiting for the right opportunity.
3. Should you go for the larger bird? It depends. According to the USDA, any leftover turkey should be eaten within 3-4 days if refrigerated. Properly frozen turkey can be stored, thawed and eaten within 4-6 months. Depending on the sale, your budget, and your willingness to work with (and eat) that much leftover turkey, a larger turkey may be a great purchase this year despite the higher cost.
4. Use coupons! There’s a reason I always advise that families use coupons… they WORK! Combined with the right sales, you can buy many items (particularly those in cans, packages, or boxes) at a fraction of the cost that non-couponers pay. Don’t leave hundreds of dollars on the table this month. Go ahead and use your coupons from your Sunday paper and the Internet. I can tell you exactly when and where to use them for maximum savings. (Visit SavingsAngel.com to learn more)
5. Decorating? Try nature instead. Send the kids outdoors to find leaves, pine cones, and pine sprigs to make an attractive centerpiece this Thanksgiving. If you must purchase items to decorate with, I recommend checking the dollar stores over conventional retailers or party stores. You may find some autumn-themed decoration deals for next year while out shopping on Black Friday (November 23rd).
The best couponers save hundreds of dollars every month at the grocery store. However, extreme couponers can end up living very extreme lifestyles to get those savings. For over five years, SavingsAngel.com has equalized the playing field – giving extreme savings to busy families who don’t have the time or ability to be an extreme couponer. Each week, SavingsAngel.com’s over 70 angels combine over 2,000 products on sale at local grocery and drug stores with an enormous database of over 2000 different manufacturer coupons. These combinations result in our members getting access to over 300 products each week for 50% off or better. Simply log in, choose the deals you want, print or clip only the coupons you need, and save hundreds of dollars a month at regional and national stores. Our angels will personally work with you to craft a plan that will help you buy healthier food at lower prices – helping you keep $200 to $400 in savings each month.
Josh Elledge is the Chief Executive “Angel” of SavingsAngel, Inc. – launched from his home in January 2007. A husband and father of three, he now appears each week on television, in eight newspapers, and a number of radio stations across the country teaching families how to cut their grocery bill in half using the Internet. Elledge created the technology found on SavingsAngel.com through the need to save his own family’s money. Successfully able to cut his own grocery bill from $600 a month to less than $300 a month, his message has reached hundreds of thousands of families. SavingsAngel.com is now growing rapidly throughout the country. You can watch a short video at SavingsAngel.com that will explain more information about how to cut your own grocery bill in half with the help of SavingsAngel.com!