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5 Tips for Planning a Budget-Friendly Super Bowl Party

5 Tips for Planning a Budget-Friendly Super Bowl Party

By Katie O'Shea • February 04, 2016

It seems like everyone is getting ready to make this year's Super Bowl a super bash.

According to the National Retail Federation,1 Americans are expected to spend $15.5 billion dollars on Super Bowl expenses this year. The average viewer is expected to spend more than $82 on food, decorations, team merchandise, and other items!

However, when it comes to planning your Super Bowl party, you don't have to spend that much to make your party a winner. Try using these tips to help plan a party that's sure to succeed:

1. Have a Potluck

One simple way to save is to share out the responsibilities - invite your guests to each bring a dish to your Super Bowl shindig.

To make sure that not everyone brings chips, you could ask each guest to bring a different type of dish, create a signup sheet online for all your guests to access, or start a group email where everyone can let each other know what they're planning to bring. This should also be helpful to any guests with dietary restrictions.

When planning the main course, consider making something that will feed a lot of people for not a lot of money. A classic choice would be chili, which you can make a lot of without spending a lot.

2. Create a List

Once you've figured out who's bringing what, start figuring out what you absolutely need to buy. Make a shopping list based on your priorities. Decide what you think is most important to have at your party, then set a budget for how much you want to spend on each item or category of items. That way, you can stay focused and avoid making too many impulse purchases.

See if something you already own could be substituted for an item on your shopping list. For instance, consider using your own plates and silverware, rather than buying disposable items. As long as you have enough for everyone, this can be an easy way to cut costs. If you're having a lot of people over, you can decide between purchasing disposable plates or cheap, plastic plates that you'll be able to use again.

3. Find Deals

For all your party purchases, from food to decorations, it's worthwhile to look for some deals. Some strategies you could try include:

4. Shop Smart

Try going to stores that are most likely to have deals. Some good bets include:

  • Dollar Stores - Dollar stores are a great resource for all kinds of products, including party decorations. You might be able to find streamers, napkins, or tablecloths matching the colors of the teams competing in the Super Bowl.
  • Wholesale Clubs - Buying in bulk can be a great way to save on items you need for your party. You could find enough snacks, appetizers, and other good options for feeding your guests.

5. Avoid Common Budget-Busters

Before the Super Bowl, it can be tempting to go out and buy team merchandise or a new TV in order to amp up your Super Bowl experience. However, these items are often more expensive right before the big game.

Instead of buying team merchandise to support your team, you could:

  • Look in your closet for items you already have in the team colors.
  • If you can't find anything, look for a cheap t-shirt in one of your team's colors. You could even decorate it with the team name or logo, if you want.

Instead of buying a new TV so that everyone can see, you could:

  • Consider asking a friend to bring over their TV and set it up it in a different room.
  • Set up your computer in a different room and play the live stream of the event.

Ultimately, the key to having a successful Super Bowl party is just to make it a fun and festive environment, which doesn't require splurging. Just have fun and enjoy the game!


The information in this article is provided for general education and informational purposes only, without any express or implied warranty of any kind, including warranties of accuracy, completeness or fitness for any particular purpose. It is not intended to be and does not constitute financial, legal or any other advice specific to you the user or anyone else. The companies and individuals (other than OneMain Financial’s sponsored partners) referred to in this message are not sponsors of, do not endorse, and are not otherwise affiliated with OneMain Financial.