Fall is the beginning of a busy, and expensive, season. Cooling temperatures signal that Halloween and Thanksgiving are right around the corner, quickly followed by the winter holidays. However, falling leaves don’t mean your bank account balance needs to drop too. There are plenty of ways to save money and still get the most out of the season.
Take Advantage of Free Attractions
Every fall, nature puts on a spectacular show that doesn’t cost a dime. Go for a hike in a nearby park, take a drive down a road lined with trees, or find a mountain to climb. You will be treated to a vibrant blast of color that only lasts for a few weeks each year. Or drive around your neighborhood looking at over-the-top Halloween decorations.
Many regional publications put out guides letting you know where you can catch the best decorations each year, from sweet to spooky. Some farms open their gates to visitors in the fall and offer free admission with the opportunity to buy lower cost produce and pumpkins while visiting, but this is usually optional.
Look for Seasonal Discounts
Once temperatures drop, prices on leftover summer merchandise fall too. Prepare for next year by taking advantage of deep discounts on everything from outdoor furniture to swimsuits. The discounts don’t end there, however. Business slows down at many attractions in the fall, prompting many to offer discounts as well.
Some amusement parks sell annual passes that cover admission for the rest of the current year and the entire next year for the same price. This can be a great deal at amusement parks that have Halloween haunted houses and other special events throughout the year
Look for Deals on Off-Season Travel
Once kids head back to school, travel worldwide slows down significantly. That means prices for hotels, airfare, and tours are often much less expensive than they are during the peak summer travel season.
Whether you want to get away for a week or a weekend, lower prices, milder weather, and lighter crowds make fall the ideal time to travel. Most years, it’s still warm enough to go to the beach well into September and it’s also a great time to book a staycation.
Eat Seasonal Foods
Fall is the ideal time to stock up on healthy, fresh fall foods. Squash, apples, beets, and sweet potatoes are all in season during the fall. Not only are they abundant throughout the fall, but they also cost less this time of year. Plan meals, including Thanksgiving menus, around in-season, produce to save a bundle. Get a smaller turkey and prepare more side dishes to save on your Thanksgiving feast. Most people like Thanksgiving sides better anyway so it’s a win-win situation.
Plan Ahead to Save on Halloween
Candy and costumes add up fast, even if you don’t have kids at home. Since retailers tend to inflate candy prices the closer we get to Halloween, buy your treats early. When it comes to costumes, start by shopping your closet first.
Even if you need to buy inexpensive face paint or accessories to round out your look, it will cost much less than buying a new costume off the rack. If you can’t find anything at home, scour thrift stores and local buy-nothing groups for great costumes that won’t break the bank. For those who really like to plan ahead, hit the Halloween aisle the day after trick-or-treating for great deals on costumes and decorations for next year.
DIY Your Décor
Instead of spending a bundle on fall decorations, try doing it yourself. Make a ghost garland out of yarn you have lying around for Halloween. Cut trash bags into the shape of a spiderweb and hang them in the window.
A fun trend is buying inexpensive paintings from thrift stores and adding simple ghosts and goblins for unique, seasonal art. For Thanksgiving pressed orange and yellow leaves look beautiful on the table and don’t cost a thing. Add some twigs to a vase to extend the natural look without spending a penny.
Shop for the holidays
Don’t wait until the last minute to shop for the holidays. Fall is the perfect time to stock up on gifts. Shopping early can help save on rush shipping costs. It can also help you avoid paying more for popular gifts that may be hard to find closer to the holidays. Keep your eye open for sales throughout the fall and be ready to buy when the price is right.
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We hope you found this helpful. This article is based on information available in September 2023 and is subject to change. It is provided as a convenience and for general information purposes only. Our content is not intended to provide legal, tax, investment, or financial advice or to indicate that a particular TD Bank or third-party product or service is available or right for you.
For specific advice about your unique circumstances, consider talking with a qualified professional.