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7 Tips for Affordable Birthday Parties

7 Tips for Affordable Birthday Parties

Between the decorations, food, locations, entertainment, and goodie bags, the cost of hosting a child's birthday party can creep up awfully fast. If you're one of the many moms who want or need to throw your next child's birthday party on the cheap, you're not alone. To help bring down your party costs, we've asked moms to share their best money-saving tips for kids' birthday parties

1. Choose a Color-Based Theme

"I usually try to stick with a color theme instead of character theme. The local dollar tree usually has great deals on party supplies or if I am looking for something particular I will go to the party store." -Jennifer Clowers of Completely Outnumbered

"I try to keep things simple by using solid color plates/utensils/cups..instead of the 'themed' ones. It's always cheaper & it's going in the garbage anyway." -Staci B. Golden of Lizard & Ladybug


"Choose a color theme instead of a pricey licensed theme and head to the dollar store for plates, napkins and children's toys." -Sharon Garofalow of Cupcakes and Cutlery


2. Decorate Cheaply with Balloons

"Hanging balloons have become one of my favorite and inexpensive ways to decorate." -Candace of Sparkle Power

"Try decorating with lots of balloons...taped to the helium needed." -Chrissy Boerman of Boerman Ramblings

3. Plan Games Instead of Paying for  Entertainment

"Another huge savings is . . . [planning] the games yourself instead of hiring entertainment!!"-Brianne Manz of Stroller in the City

"Have a party at the park or your house, no one cares as long as the kids have fun." -Laureen Botticelli of The Momccupation

4. Serve Food that Stretches

"Bak[e] things that go far but don't cost very much, like meringues, which require two eggs and 100grams of sugar to make roughly 12-15 meringues. Or jello — you can use fresh fruit juice and gelatine. Place in molds and they looks super cute. [Or] fresh fruit chopped up on kebab sticks." -Bernice Griffiths of Betty Bake Blog


5. Bake Your Own Cake or Cupcakes

"I try to bake the cake or cupcakes myself [to] cut back on cost." -Elizabeth Jacob of Yellow Finch Designs

"I usually make homemade cupcakes per request from my kids, which saves money, and I find it less messy. SCORE!" -Jennifer Clowers of Completely Outnumbered

6. Shop the Dollar Store Goody Bags

"Kids appreciate the simple things. They don't know the difference between goody bag stuffers picked out from the dollar store [vs.] one you got at Neiman Marcus." -mommareeze of My Journey Through Life and Mommyhood

"Kids don't really need goody bags but if you insist, just put pencils, bouncy balls, or candy in it...things you can buy in bulk at a novelty store for super cheap." -Chrissy Boerman of Boerman Ramblings

7. Organize a Party Swap with Friends

"Create an informal 'party swap' with your other party-throwing pals to share your leftovers with them and have access to their excess as well." -Sharon Garofalow of Cupcakes and Cutlery

Join The Conversation
MelanieBlais9635 MelanieBlais9635 5 years
Last year, for my 6 year old girl, we did a Luau party. It was great AND cheap! I got straw skirts, flower leis and flower hair clips at the dollar store to give to each friend instead of a goody bag. For eating, I stuck with solid color napkins and plates and I decorated with balloons of all colors. I borrowed a couple CDs of hawaiian and jamaican music and we had dancing and limbo contests. And we also played at Twister, which we play at every single kid birthday party and Christmas! Finally, since I had a lot of family and friends over (about 25, grownups and kids together), I bought a huge cake at Costco for about 20$, which is pretty cheap, but really good, in my opinion. I didn't want any of the available theme designs so I specified to them to put only white frosting on it, and the message, and then I stuck some beach themed Littlest Petshops on top of it (which was part of the gifts for my daughter anyway). And to go with the cake, we served some homemade lemonade and sliced watermelons. Through it all, it was a blast, even if it was pouring outside the hole time (birthday's in may, so it's fun to go outside when we get a chance)!
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