Holiday hosting can be fun but it can also wreak havoc on your bank account. Some studies have shown that holiday revelers plan to spend an average of $1,100 on food, gifts, and entertainment during the season.

There are ways to scale back the costs of holiday entertaining without losing any of the cheer:

• Have a plan – Decide what events you will be hosting and attending. Once you have figured this out make a list of exactly what you will need to provide. To get an idea of how much things will cost look through your old bank statements to get a rough figure on how much you spent in the past.

• Create a budget – Create a budget for what you can realistically afford and don’t forget to include incidentals like host/hostess gifts. If you’re hosting the holiday party this year, understanding the true cost of things will help you decide whether to throw a smaller intimate dinner party or a big soiree.

• Be creative in cutting costs – Hosting doesn’t have to break the bank, consider having a potluck dinner. If you are a guest and searching for a gift to bring the host, consider making a gift or bringing an inexpensive addition to the party table.

• Start saving now – Every bit counts so if you don’t have a lot of money to save, start small, and it will add up. Check the store flyers for deals and coupons and don’t forget to use your grocery store savings cards.

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