It’s fun to get together with family and friends, but generally, there is no money in the budget to go out. Dinner alone can be expensive and if you add a movie or bowling to that, it is really expensive. With these outings, they can be fun and within budget.
This post contains affiliate links where if you click on the link and make a purchase, we make a small commission at NO additional costs to you. To see the full disclosure policy, click here.
- Movies at home (Redbox)
- Game night – cards, board games
- Sports games on TV
- Potluck – everyone brings something
- BBQ – everyone brings meat, a side, & dessert
- BBQ – host provides meat and someone else brings sides and dessert
- Just do appetizers and desserts (this is my favorite)
Watching movies at home not only saves money, but you can stop it and restart at any time. Maybe it’s just me, but I find it difficult to time going to out to dinner and being able to make the times work just right to get to the movie theater in time. I’ve been to BBQs where someone is in charge of the meat and others bring the side dishes and desserts. We’ve also done it where the host has all the sides and desserts and everyone brings their own meat. There is plenty of room on the BBQ pit. This makes it cheaper for all and you get exactly what you want. Try it different ways and see what you like the best. If kids are gathering too, you don’t need a babysitter.
Outside the home
- Look for deals on Groupon. This has discounted activities, meals, and products. I love the Groupon site and have bought items to save money. Groupon is great at saving money, but you have to watch the expiration date. The last thing you want to do is buy it and not be able to enjoy it. Search by location to find deals.
- Skip the activity and just go to dinner.
- Groupon also has dining options.
- Skip the meal and just do an activity.
If you do something outside your house and you need a babysitter, perhaps you can let the kids play together at one house with a babysitter and share the cost instead of each person getting a babysitter. The kids will have fun and while you’ll need to pay more in total for more kids, you can share this expense.
Being on a budget should not impact spending time with friends. Instead of going to dinner and a movie, host a gathering where you do both entertainment and a meal. A meal can be potluck or something simple. Entertainment can be Redbox movies or games. The good news is that while having a great time, everyone will save money.