The average Independence Day celebration costs $710, according to our recent Fourth of July spending survey. Yet most Americans plan to spend less than $100 on the holiday. The gap between those numbers shows that many people might struggle to keep their July Fourth costs on track.
With proper planning, you can celebrate the Fourth of July in style — without breaking the bank. Follow these July Fourth savings tips to get more fun out of the holiday with less expense.
1. Go coupon clipping for the Fourth of July
Before making any major purchases for your Independence Day celebration, take some time to check your weekly circulars and scout for coupons. You’re likely to find deals and coupons on a range of cookout items, from paper plates and cups to burgers, hot dogs, and buns.
Some fireworks stands even accept coupons. For example, TNT Fireworks offers $20 off a purchase of $100 or more at one of its stands. Depending on the laws in your state, your grocery store might even provide a discounted selection of fireworks.
2. Find a free fireworks show
One of the cheapest ways to get your fix of patriotic pyrotechnics is to attend a community fireworks show. The display will probably beat whatever you’d set off at your cookout or block party. It could be a safer alternative, too.
These fireworks displays are a great way to get outside this summer and mingle with members of your community. Best of all, they’re usually free to enjoy, so you can skip the average $85 most people plan to spend on fireworks, according to our July Fourth survey.
3. Buy fireworks at the last minute
As with many holidays, July Fourth paraphernalia is often discounted on the day of and immediately after. Since the Fourth of July falls on a Wednesday this year, you could buy your fireworks the day after for more savings and celebrate this weekend instead.
Just be prepared for fireworks selections to be picked over. You might pay less but have a more limited selection to choose from.
4. Cook with what’s in season
Over one-half of people plan to spend more on food than on anything else for the Fourth of July, with food costs averaging $149, according to our July Fourth spending survey.
Luckily, summer has a lot of amazing food in season. Your holiday party is the perfect time to showcase these flavorful fresh foods that are often the cheapest they’ll be all year.
Several seasonal fruits could make for a colorful addition to your table spread. You could throw together a salad or skewers using these seasonal fruits: cherries, watermelon, blackberries, peaches, and plums. Or you could grill up veggies for a fresh side. Corn, cucumbers, green beans, peppers, tomatoes, and okra are in season.
5. Plan a low-cost cookout menu
An Independence Day cookout doesn’t have to cost a lot. The average holiday cookout can cost as little as $5.51 per person, according to an analysis from the American Farm Bureau Federation, with a menu that includes hot dogs, burgers, ribs, and all the usual fixings.
If you plan your cookout menu ahead of time, you can opt for low-priced alternatives at the store. Mixing together a cooler full of punch could cost a lot less than providing individual cans of soda, for example. You could also lower costs by cooking hot dogs and hamburgers instead of steaks, chicken breasts, or ribs.
6. Buy booze in bulk
If you’re providing alcoholic beverages for a large Independence Day get-together, don’t shy away from buying in bulk. You can save money at Costco, BJ’s, Sam’s Club, or similar warehouse clubs or stores.
Boxed wine will fit right in with your July Fourth spread while providing more booze at a fraction of the price. A typical $15 box of wine will serve 20 glasses, according to Lifehacker. Compare that to a bottle of wine, which serves five glasses. That makes bottled wine four times more expensive than the boxed alternative.
You can skip the keg, however. When it comes to beer, a 24-pack can provide savings. Buying cans in bulk costs about the same per ounce, once all costs are included, according to an analysis from Clever Dude, a personal finance and lifestyle blog.
7. Ask party guests to chip in
Save yourself some costs and headaches by being thoughtful about what you ask guests to bring. You can decide on two or three main items you’ll supply, then divvy up the rest of your shopping list among attendees.
Don’t hesitate to ask your friends to contribute some big-ticket items, such as alcoholic beverages, patriotic decor, paper goods, and burgers or other meats. You could even ask for someone else to pick up fireworks or for each guest to pay $5 to attend.
8. Make the most of credit card rewards
A lot of July Fourth costs provide opportunities to earn credit card rewards. That’s because many of your purchases will fall into categories for which cards commonly offer above-average rewards.
Choosing the right credit card for different purchases can help you get more rewards and cash back. To save more at the supermarket, pull out the card that offers a higher percentage of cash back for grocery purchases. At the gas pump, make sure you swipe your card that offers the best rewards on gas.
No matter what your budget for the Fourth of July, you can celebrate the holiday in style. Follow these tips and you might have your best Independence Day in years — all while spending less.
Interested in a personal loan?Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
|Lender||APR Range||Loan Amount|
|1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.
3 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.
4 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
5 Important Disclosures for LendingPoint.
6 Important Disclosures for LendingClub.
All loans made by WebBank, Member FDIC. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, and credit usage & history. The APR ranges from 6.16% to 35.89%. For example, you could receive a loan of $6,000 with an interest rate of 7.99% and a 5.00% origination fee of $300 for an APR of 11.51%. In this example, you will receive $5,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $187.99. The total amount repayable will be $6,767.64. Your APR will be determined based on your credit at time of application. The origination fee ranges from 1% to 6% and the average origination fee is 5.49% as of Q1 2017. There is no down payment and there is never a prepayment penalty. Closing of your loan is contingent upon your agreement of all the required agreements and disclosures on the www.lendingclub.com website. All loans via LendingClub have a minimum repayment term of 36 months or longer.
7 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
8 Important Disclosures for Avant.
* The actual rate and loan amount that a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and other factors. Funds are generally deposited via ACH for delivery next business day if approved by 4:30pm CT Monday-Friday. Avant branded credit products are issued by WebBank, member FDIC.
** Example: A $5,700 loan with an administration fee of 4.75% and an amount financed of $5,429.25, repayable in 36 monthly installments, would have an APR of 29.95% and monthly payments of $230.33
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.
Upgrade Bank Disclosures
** Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.
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|6.26% – 14.87%1||$5,000 - $100,000||Visit SoFi|
|6.99% – 35.97%*||$1,000 - $50,000||Visit Upgrade|
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|4.99% – 29.99%3||$10,000 - $35,000||Visit FreedomPlus|
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|15.49% – 34.49%5||$2,000 - $25,000||Visit LendingPoint|
|6.16% – 35.89%6||$1,000 - $40,000||Visit LendingClub|
|6.99% – 18.24%7||$5,000 - $75,000||Visit Earnest|
|9.95% – 35.99%8||$2,000 - $35,000||Visit Avant|