Friday, September 04, 2015

15 Ways to Save Money Grocery Shopping on Labor Day


Labor Day is a reminder that Summer it about to end. For some, it is a last ditch effort to go on vacation and enjoy the weather and outdoor activities. According to the Department of Labor’s website, “Labor Day is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country”. 

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City. In 1884, the first Monday in September was selected as the national holiday. It became a federal holiday in 1894. On Labor Day all government offices, schools and organizations and many businesses are closed. 

Although Labor Day is a time to celebrate the labor of American workers over 53 percent of American workers are overworked, underpaid and stressed according to a survey by Staples Advantage. According to the Center for American Progress, the U.S. is the most overworked country in the world and is the only country without: national paid parental leave, maximum length of workweek, federal law requiring mandatory paid sick leave, and no legally mandated annual leave. Based on these statistics, you deserve to have fun Labor Day weekend, you’ve earned it! 

During any holiday it is easy to spend money with all the advertisers, family and friends asking you to buy this or buy that. Resist the temptation to spend money that you don’t have, buy more than you need, or buy something you probably will not use simply because it is on sale. 

You can enjoy a holiday meal without going into debt but it requires effective planning. Many people love getting together for a holiday. You can still enjoy a holiday meal with family and friends, save money and eat healthy. 

Comparison shop to see if you can find items for a cheaper price at another store. Don’t stress out over preparations. Focus on giving a festive event that is memorable and everyone is happy. Here are 15 ways to plan a Labor Day celebration on a budget:

  1.  Plan ahead. Don't wait until the day before to go shopping. Lines at the register are longer and the selection of items is limited. Try shopping at least a week in advance or early in the morning.
  2. Make lists. Make a list of what you need and can afford to buy and stick to it.
  3. Menu. Create a menu ahead of time and stick to it. Consider low cost items for the menu such as potato salad, salads, sweet potatoes, casseroles, etc.
  4. Local shopping. Visit local vendors, farms or farmers markets to purchase meats, fruits and vegetables, which will be less expensive than the grocery store. Buy items in season, fresh is always better.
  5. Budget. Create a food budget and don’t go over that amount. Only buy what you need.
  6. Coupons. Know your prices and when items go on sale. Use coupons on sale items. Shop at stores that offer double coupons and discounts for loyalty card members.
  7. Smaller meal. Consider having brunch instead of dinner to save money.
  8. Side items. Buy ingredients for side dishes at least one week before you buy the meats.
  9. Drinks. Make your own non-alcoholic beverages such as tea or punch.
  10. Condiments. Buy spices and condiments at the dollar store.
  11. Salad Dressing. Use olive oil instead of salad dressing for pasta dishes and salads.
  12. Make from scratch. Make you own bread, yogurt, pasta, soda, jelly, ice cream and desserts from scratch.
  13. Use cash. Pay for all items with cash to help keep track of spending.
  14. Potluck. Ask friends and family to bring a dish to help cut downs on costs.
  15. Leftovers. Freeze leftovers or take to work for lunch.

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