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Regardless of where you are located in the United States, the fall means school is back in session and another sports season has started! While football is arguably the most popular fall sport, these tips can help you plan a tailgate for any sporting event you may be attending.

grillingThe Food

  • Buying off-brands of soda, chips, and other must-have tailgating items will save you money without skipping any of the classic snacks.
  • Worried about not having enough food for everyone in attendance? Go to a wholesale food club like Costco, BJ’s or Sam’s Club to get more bang for your buck.
  • Buy cheap cuts of meat to reduce your costs. Chicken is relatively inexpensive and filling, while steak on the other hand can cost more than you may be willing to spend. Sticking to the classic hamburger and hot dog option also is a good way to save money while still pleasing your tailgating party.
  • Inviting the whole family and close friends? Make it a potluck! Each group can bring a different dish, but be sure to keep track of who is bringing what or have a sign-up sheet. This will allow you to avoid duplicate dishes or possibly having more desserts than actual food.
  • For more tips about how to save money on food, checkout our Affordable Cookout Ideas.

The Supplies

  • Construct a kit of must-have items for your tailgating party.
  • Ask yourself; is this a one-time tailgate or a regular event? If you answered “one-time tailgate,” purchase disposable items like paper plates, utensils, and a Styrofoam cooler. If you answered “a regular event,” it may be in your best interest to purchase reusable pans, serving utensils, and coolers. While this initial purchase will cost you more, in the long run you will be saving money.
  • Summer is ending and lawn chairs and outdoor patio furniture are on sale. These types of chairs and tables are perfect for tailgating because they are weather resistant. Better yet, now is the perfect time to buy since they are typically on sale.



The Spot

  • While tailgating extremely close to the stadium is fun, it also costs more. Oftentimes, local establishments will charge a small fee to tailgate in their parking lot on game days. This will save you money without being too far from the field!
  • Don’t get too wrapped up in tailgating and forget to actually buy your ticket to the game! See if the stadium offers group rates to save you and your tailgating party money.


Whether it’s your first time tailgating or you’re regular, taking these suggestions into consideration can help keep it affordable. If you are in need of a new grill, outdoor furniture, or need help financing your next tailgate, Mariner Finance is here to help. We make loans for any reason, and will work with you to help you find a solution that best fits your budget and needs. Contact your local Mariner Finance branch today to discover how we can help!

This material was prepared for general distribution. Although all blog posts are intended to be accurate, the information and third-party links provided in the Mariner Finance’s blog are intended for general knowledge and educational purposes only without any warranties, implied or express, of any kind. The posts do not constitute investment, financial or other advice. Authors may or may not be licensed financial professionals; for specific advice, seek the input of a licensed and trained financial expert. Mariner Finance’s blog entries may also be viewed at www.personalfinancecompany.com.

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