Want to tailgate like a pro but keep your budget intact? Pull on your team’s jersey, swipe on some war paint, and check out these tips for hosting a fun, budget-friendly tailgating party. You’ll be the center of game day festivities!
Make your own spirit gear. Save money and have fun with the family by painting your own team banners to decorate your tailgating location. Head to your local craft store or dollar store and buy plain colored streamers, felt or craft paper to cut into pennants, and posters to call out your favorite team chants. If you don’t have a jersey, pick up a plain white t-shirt at a craft or discount store and use permanent markers or paint to write out your team’s name and your favorite player’s number.
Prep your playlist. Instead of flipping on the radio and listening to whatever the DJ chooses, use a free music app like Spotify to compile your own unique playlist. Think about the type of atmosphere you want to create around your vehicle and the friends you’ll be entertaining. Pick songs that will help set the mood and then watch as it evolves! Not sure where to start? Check out this playlist of songs that are sure to pump up any game day party!
Make it a team effort. Encouraging friends and family to bring their favorite game day dishes to share is one of the easiest ways to host an affordable tailgating party. Plus, the atmosphere at a major tailgate party is all about community. Avoid blowing your budget on food by assigning a couple of friends to bring drinks, snacks, and desserts. If you need culinary inspiration, check out our winning tailgate recipes that cost less than $10 to make.
Get your game on. Bring along a few games like Corn Hole, Diced Darts, or Irish Bowling. They’re easy to make at home and easy to set-up. Don’t forget a football of course! For some sweat-free fun, download the free NFL Football Trivia App on your smartphone to quiz your tailgate buddies.
Reduce and reuse. Instead of buying bags of ice, freeze water bottles and use them to keep your food and drinks cold. You’ll have cold water to drink after they’ve melted! And, if you’re short on cooler space you can turn an empty box or case of water, or your favorite tailgate beverage, into a toss-away drink cooler by lining it with a plastic trash bag.
It will also be cheaper to borrow supplies instead of buying them. Before heading out to buy folding chairs or a pop-up canopy, ask your neighbors, friends, and coworkers if you can borrow their gear. If you’re still missing a few items after you reach out to them, cruise Craigslist or search Swap.com for used, discounted gear.
Bring the party home. If you really want to cut costs, consider hosting your tailgate in your own home. You’ll save on the cost of gas, parking, and tickets and you’ll also get to watch the game from the comfort of your living room. There’s nothing like being a part of a massive crowd of screaming, excited fans, but if your budget is on the tight side there’s no reason you can’t host a fun and frugal get-together at home.
What a pleasant surprise! Check out these winning tailgate recipes for under $10.