It is summer. Kids are getting out of school, families are planning vacations. . . It is also time for festivals. Festivals are a great place to try new foods. The problem is the price.

However, there are some ways to enjoy yourself and your festival experience without breaking the bank.

Don’t make festival food your main meal. Eat something before you go. Then, when you are at the festival, you can buy a small portion of food on a limited budget. You get to try the food without spending a lot of money.

Split an item with a family member or two. This past week my family went to a local festival. We ordered a two flavor gelato cup for $3. We got two spoons, and I split it with my husband and two of my kids. We all got several bites so we were able to sample the restaurant’s food.

Don’t graze. Buy all of your food and eat it in one sitting. You will feel more satisfied that way.

Avoid buying beverages at the festival. Bring your own water and pop to save money.

Set a budget before you go. Around here, if the weather is not too hot, my husband and I like to go to Taste of Chicago. If we tried to have a complete meal at the Taste, it would get very expensive. Instead we decide on a set budget, say $20, buy the tickets and split them evenly. My husband buys the food he would like and I do the same. In the end, if we are each left with a few tickets, we decide on an item to buy together and split it.

If you are going to a large festival such as Taste of Chicago, see if you can buy your tickets in advance. If you can, they are almost always cheaper than buying them the day you attend the event.

There are plenty of local festivals around the country to attend. Follow some of these tips for enjoying yourself without spending a lot of money.

I shared this post at Works for Me Wednesdays.

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