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I absolutely love the 4th of July! In fact, I don’t know a lot of people who don’t like it. It summarizes everything that I love about America. Friends and family coming together to eat some great grilled food and drink some beer while lighting stuff on fire or blowing it up. What about that statement is there not to love? Unless you might be a nurse or doctor. Then I could see where it could be a gray area.
As a child, I have a ton of memories of blowing up McDonald’s toys or plastic army guys. It was a blast, but as a child I never worried about the amount of money I was setting on fire. Literally. As I get older, blowing up fireworks has become a lot less fun. I usually join in on the fun for a little while, but it isn’t necessarily as fun as it was as a child. Anyone else agree?
In 2017, I decided not to spend money on fireworks, but instead enjoy the fireworks of others. As I was continuing through my Debt Free Journey, it just wasn’t in my budget this year. I have spent most of my weekend reading some great books and working on some writing. I spent a few days by my apartment pool and enjoy the local flea market on the morning of the 4th. In 2018, I went to a local baseball game on the 3rd to watch fireworks, but I actually closed the restaurant on the 4th.
Now that I am debt free and a homeowner, 4th of July does look a little different for me. My new neighbors have invited me to their BBQ and I guess it is a pretty big deal in our neighborhood.
Whether you throw a big party or just hang out at home with the family, the 4th of July can get expensive pretty quickly. The fun and excitement can mean spending a little or a lot more than you have budgeted for. Unless you planned ahead for a huge 4th of July Bash, the chances are high for breaking the budget.
Here are 4 great ways to save money on the 4th of July!
1) Attend City Festivals or Firework shows
I know there are a ton of fun festivals that plan their summer activities around the 4th of July. Smaller towns are likely to have activities like street dances, 5K races, parades, and other fun team competitions. Check out the towns in your surrounding area to see if there are any fun cheap or free activities.
Another one to look for is firework shows. There are usually some good firework shows depending how close you live to cities. When I was younger, one of the companies in town always did a big firework show. We could see it from our front porch, so we would get our lawn chairs out and watch it from home. People would also drive to the park to get a closer view and it still didn’t cost a dime!
2) Look For Great Grilling Deals
Grocery stores are likely to take advantage of everyone’s grilling adventures and get some good sales going! My local Hy-vee had a deal for Buy 8 Hamburger patties for $12, get 8 Brats free! Between my boyfriend and I, we bought 3 packs, grilled some and threw some in the freezer for later grilling fun this summer!I also found one of my favorite summer beers on sale for $5.50 for a 6 pack! Be open to buying a cheaper beer if you aren’t super picky about it. There were some great deals going on at the grocery store!
Check out all of your grocery favorites out on the Flipp app and Ibotta to see what your grocery store has deals on! If you can plan you grocery trips around a few Ibotta rebates, you can save a little extra! Ibotta is a grocery rebate application for your phone. It is so simple. When you go grocery shopping, check out the app to see what they are offering for your grocery store. After you get home, you just upload a picture of your receipt and scan the bar code of the items that qualified for a rebate! This adds money to your account! When you sign up through this link, you get a $10 welcome bonus after your first grocery rebate.
3) Wait until the 4th to buy fireworks
I don’t know about other cities, but in Nebraska, the 4th of July means firework tents are all over the store parking lots start popping up around the 30th of June. I remember talking my mom into spending hundreds of dollars on fireworks before the 4th. In most cities in Nebraska, we are allowed fireworks from the 1st-4th of July. There are time restraints, but those four days are totally open.This is not something I did when trying to save money.
By waiting til the last day to buy them, it means that you won’t feel obligated to burn through them, then buy more on the 4th. Being patient and waiting until the 4th to buy your own fireworks to light can mean huge savings. Most stands will discount even more as the day goes on because they have to move their products. Getting it off their shelves is usually worth discounting it for them. The less they have to deal with after that evening, the better for them. Take advantage of that and save the big (expensive) explosives for the professionals. I usually purchase a few smoke bombs and some of the smaller fireworks.
4) Make plans with friends
Making plans with other friends can mean splitting the costs on some things. If you plan on grilling, you can have everyone bring their own meat and their own beer or help out with sides. This saves the costs of providing food and alcohol for everyone. If everyone also brings one side to share, it creates a great spread for everyone to enjoy! If everyone brings a few fireworks as well, it can lower the cost for everyone. Because who enjoys lighting a ton of money on fire?
Check out Groupon for a some fun things to do with friends during the day and then BBQ at night! Groupon has a ton of great local discounts for fun things to do! You might be surprised at all of the things you are missing out on in your area!
In addition to these four money saving tips, being safe during the holiday can add in even more savings! Those medical bills add up if you aren’t being careful with drinking, the sun, and fireworks! Be safe and enjoy a great holiday! If you missed it, I also have 15 tips for some summer time savings! These tips can help you stretch your dollar even further for this holiday.
The 4th of July can mean a ton of fun for the entire family, if the holiday is done correctly. You don’t have to celebrate all week to enjoy a one day holiday. 2017 was nice because I ended up getting a 4 day weekend for the holiday, but I spent a lot of it in front of my computer working on my blog! I hope everyone enjoys their 4th, but doesn’t completely break the bank to regret it the next day!
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