Military families are sticking to a budget this Thanksgiving, according to a new survey conducted by First Command Financial Behaviors Index. After canvassing middle-class military families with household incomes of $50,000 or above, the investment adviser company found that 62 percent of respondents were planning to reduce their Thanksgiving dinners and travel this November.
"Middle-class Americans are changing the way they celebrate Thanksgiving," First Command CEO Scott Spiker said in a statement. "Affected by the economic issues of the past several years, they are making frugal spending a year-around habit. Notably, these changes are turning Thanksgiving into a more intimate holiday."
Spiker added that, overall, four out of 10 Americans are celebrating the national holiday with only immediate family members, a trend that has been spreading in recent years.
According to the survey, 29 percent of military respondents are reducing their travel expenses, while 22 percent plan to spend less on dinner preparations. Another 23 percent have created a budget.
Given the recent setbacks impacting defense spending, it's likely that military families are making some financial changes. Most recently, the Nov. 1 termination of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program cut the food stamps program by $4 million, ultimately affecting nearly 900,000 veterans, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Military.com reported that an estimated 5,000 active-duty servicemembers will also be impacted by the food stamps reduction.