Americans Are Cutting Back on Fresh Veggies, Desserts and Wine This Thanksgiving To Save Money

Close up of stuffed roasted turkey during family's dinner at dining table.
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Despite reports that many Americans will be altering their Thanksgiving plans by gathering with friends over pizza (or skipping the holiday altogether) to save money, a recent NeilsenIQ poll found that 91% of Americans will be celebrating Thanksgiving.

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However, according to the Neilsen survey, many revelers are going to change things up to save money this year. Planned changes include having smaller parties and forgoing — or cutting back on — fresh vegetable dishes, dessert options and alcohol.

A considerable 41% of respondents stated that they will be spending more money on Thanksgiving this year than last, but 68% admit they will fine-tune their budget depending on the price of goods. Nearly 75% of holiday hosts surveyed feel that $200 is the high-end threshold that they are willing to spend; However, one in four respondents will be spending between $50 and $75 on Thanksgiving.

According to the study, when it comes to slashing food and beverage spending, 35% are planning on cutting back on dessert, 27% said they are going to skip alcohol and 27% will buy fewer fresh veggies.

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Large Turkeys in Short Supply For Thanksgiving This Year

With larger turkeys in short supply, per Reuters, and poultry prices still soaring, many people are willing to scrimp on the traditional meal centerpiece as well. About 38% of those polled stated they would consider going with a smaller turkey this year.

Additionally, 37% of Thanksgiving cooks intend to make more meals from scratch rather than buy prepared items, 36% said they will have fewer sides and 27% claim they will buy more canned or frozen vegetables to save money. Approximately 13% plan on letting others prepare their meal by eating out at a restaurant.

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Americans are adjusting to the realities of living through a period of sky-high inflation. But you don’t want one of the biggest meals of the year to be anxiety inducing. Holidays aren’t about winning, they are about making memories and new traditions with loved ones. By cutting back on spending and making Thanksgiving celebrations unique, many people are realizing that they can still enjoy the company of friends and family despite difficult financial circumstances.

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About the Author

David Nadelle is a freelance editor and writer based in Ottawa, Canada. After working in the energy industry for 18 years, he decided to change careers in 2016 and concentrate full-time on all aspects of writing. He recently completed a technical communication diploma and holds previous university degrees in journalism, sociology and criminology. David has covered a wide variety of financial and lifestyle topics for numerous publications and has experience copywriting for the retail industry.
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