Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks, overeat, and spend time with family – but all those things don’t always come cheap, especially if you’re the one hosting the festivities.

And between all the different dishes that need to be prepared and coordinating all the different moving pieces and people involved, there’s more than enough to make your head spin.

Thankfully Financial Service Representative at HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union Stella Dinong shares some tips on keeping your Thanksgiving holiday within budget.

“Just because you’re trying to keep your Thanksgiving spending in check doesn’t mean you need to skimp out on what your heart is set on. Instead, be intentional with your purchases and spend some quality time looking over sales and other promotional good deals when it comes to your various ingredients, as well as even decorations and other festive details. For my family, we start looking early and often and make special note when we find something on our list of must-buys. And although it might not seem like much at first, a few dollars here and there can really add up.

And I know it might seem like it’s too late to do anything this year since Thanksgiving is only a day away, but maintaining that financially strategic and responsible perspective is a mindset that’ll never go out of style. And even those last-minute shoppers out there can still benefit by doing a little homework and finding the best available deals remaining. There might not be as many, but there’s no sense in spending more than you need to when savings are out there. Whether it’s a smaller, local provider or a major grocery chain choose wisely with how much you’re spending because your Thanksgiving matters.  Just because you’re hosting a Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t mean you should be expected to cook and pay for the entire meal. Between the shopping, cooking, cleaning, and decorating, it’s not just a lot of work, but it can also place a large financial burden on you. That’s why asking your friends and family to help ease that burden is a great way to save money on Thanksgiving expenses. Have guests bring a dish and make it potluck style. Not only will you have to spend less at the grocery store, you’ll also save time cooking! And if you’re able to request types of dishes or even assign dishes to individuals, you’ll end up with a full spread of food.

Even though cooking and planning take a lot of work, it’s a labor of love. But I know not everyone feels the same or has the time or energy to spend the entire holiday in the kitchen. That’s why the second tip for those in such a situation is to look into getting your Thanksgiving meal ordered through a restaurant. Although it might seem as though going this route might be expensive, if everyone in your party contributed a little bit of money instead of needing to bring a dish you’ll likely have more than enough to cover the order. And when you really think of all the costs that go with cooking, as well as the time and possible frustrations that go with getting everything prepared, having you Thanksgiving meal made for you might even be the more attractive option.”

For more information or if you’d like to talk with a financial service officer from Hawaii USA Federal Credit Union visit a branch near you or online at