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4 Ways To Fund College or NFL Football Season Expenses – Game Tickets & Tailgate Party Ideas

By Erik Folgate

football tailgatingIt’s the most wonderful time of the year, even more exciting than Christmas for big college and pro football fans. I’m a huge college football fan. I bleed orange and blue. Yes, I’m a Florida Gator fan, Go Gators!

Now that I’ve made a ton of enemies by revealing that, I’ll try to win you back by helping you come up with alternative ways to fund your tailgate parties.

Football seems to be more about the atmosphere than it is about the actual game. There are so many pre-game and post-game festivities that we often forget about the actual game. Football is unique in that 70 to 80 thousand people will set up shop around the stadium hours before the game and grill out, drink beer, and play bocce ball. You don’t see anything like that at baseball or basketball games. People show up, come to the game, and leave. That’s not the case for football. We make it an entire weekend event.

Despite my intense fandom, I’m a big proponent of stressing the difference between wants and needs, and spending money on football games and tailgating definitely isn’t a need. To help satisfy your tailgating “wants,” here are a few ways you can build up your football party fund without noticing it:

1. Have A Garage Sale Just For Entertainment Expenses
Having fun is part of life, and if you think you can make a few hundred bucks from a garage sale or selling stuff on eBay/Craigslist, I say go for it. You won’t be dipping from your normal monthly income and you’re sacrificing unwanted stuff in order to make memories at football games and spend quality time with friends and family.

2. Round Up And Pay Yourself
When you’re using cash and you spend $15 from a $20 dollar bill, keep the extra $5 aside in a separate fund. Do that throughout the week, and you’ll have an extra $50 or so to grab some food for your football party on the weekend. It’s a good little trick to make you feel less guilty on the weekend.

3. Choose 2 or 3 Big Games To Go All Out
Rather than do something for every game of the season or every home game, pick 2 or 3 of the biggest games of the year and go all out. This will give you time to set money aside gradually, and instead of doing a small tailgate or party for every game, you can have a few big bashes that’ll probably be a lot more fun than doing it halfway.

4. Save Your Fun Money
I’m a big believer of setting aside money for each spouse just to simply “blow it.” It should be money that each spouse can do whatever they want with without being questioned by the other spouse. So, instead of blowing it on Starbucks or eating out for lunch, save that fun money and put it towards your tailgate fund!

This last tip raises a great lifestyle choice. By being financially disciplined in other aspects of your life, you can reap the fruits of your labor in the areas that matter most…like tailgating!

So NFL fans, what are your Super Bowl predictions? Who’ll be in the big game this February? Let’s hear your picks!

Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

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  • Pejast

    Packers. All the way.

  • Anon

    GO GATORS!!!!!!!!

  • http://barbarafriedbergpersonalfinance.com Barb Friedberg

    Go Giants and Bengals; Try winning your fantasy football pool and use proceeds for next year!

  • Jesus Lopez

    Great point! I never thought of it like that, I am always trying to scrape a few pennies out of the sofa when it comes to funding my tailgate parties, especially when I need gear so that we can watch the game while there. Luckily, I recently got the Tailgater while working at DISH and now I don’t need all the crazy junk they sell to get TV. No I just set up my TV and 211k receiver and hook it up to the tailgater on the floor. It points itself and I have the game on before I get the burgers on the grill.

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