As parents, you want your children to have a blast at their birthday parties. You want entertainment that delights the guests, food that satisfies and party favors that the kids will use.
Kids want their birthdays to include cake, birthday pinatas, games, friends and, of course, lots of presents.
All of this can be pretty expensive. It can be challenging to plan a party for your child that is fun and memorable for them and that doesn't empty your wallet. On average, parents spend between $200 and $400 on birthday parties.
There are, however, some easy ways to cut costs on birthday supplies, without diminishing the quality or fun of your kid’s party. Here are eight of our favorite suggestions for money-saving birthday ideas:
You shouldn't skip paper invitations for a kid's party, they are more personal and fun for your child than e-vites or Facebook events. However, there is really no need to buy expensive invitations. Make your own invites using craft materials purchased from your local dollar store. Your child can help decorate or write the invitations and then hand-deliver them to his or her friends. Send reminders and invites for out-of-town guests via email or a free online invitation site.
Location, Location, (Free) Location
Instead of renting out a space, you can turn your own backyard or living room into an awesome party location. The park is also a great free place to host a party. Most have picnic tables for guests to sit and playgrounds for kids. If you live near the beach or the mountains, an outdoor party can be a cool atmosphere to stage a party.
Buy Low-Cost Decorations
Decorations are great to set the theme of the party and add to the fun. Budget-friendly decorations are easy to find; buy balloons, pinatas and streamers online or at your local discount store. If you buy decorations in a neutral color and theme, you can reuse them for other parties. A homemade banner with photos of the birthday boy or girl is thoughtful way to impress guests.
Don't Invite the Whole Town
By reducing the size of the guest list, you can cut a lot of costs. Young children do not usually care if every kid from their school comes to their party. Set a maximum number of guests with your child ahead of time and then let them choose who they want to fill the spots on the list.
A potluck is a fun and easy way to have plenty of food and also variety that everyone will like. Ask guests to bring a kid-friendly dish and provide a couple main entrées yourself. This will cut the cost of catering or the stress of planning an entire menu.
Bake Your Own
Cake is a birthday staple. Whatever your child's favorite flavor is, chances are you can make it yourself for a fraction of the cost of a bakery. A fun idea is to bake cupcakes and let the children at the party decorate their own. You can provide them with different frosting colors and sprinkles.
Bounce houses and magicians inspire a lot of smiles, but so does musical chairs, pin the tail on the donkey, board games, nail or face painting, and tons of other DIY fun. Stretch your imagination -- and your dollar -- while keeping your child and his or her guests entertained.
Homemade Favor Bags
Favors are usually customary when throwing a kid’s birthday party. Craft your own by filling paper bags with homemade cookies, printed coloring paper and crayons. You can also add more useful party favors such as a pre-made muffin mix, flower seeds or a cookie cutter.
—Article by Justin Greig exclusively for CupcakesforParty.com. A self-proclaimed "21st century hippie," Justin studied Journalism at Berkeley and freelances for many environmental publications. He has a special interest in conservation, and he and his wife recently added solar panels to their home.
Cupcakes for Party did not receive monetary compensation or any product or gift certificate for posting this article. We liked the article and we believed our readers would find it practical and useful.
IMAGE SOURCE: Flickr user The Bean Blog; licensed under a CC BY-SA 2.0 license
Kids Birthdays on a Budget
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