8. Avoid ‘Party’ Stores
Speciality party shops might be the shopping location of your dreams, particularly if you love planning parties. They can also be super expensive, and lead you to unnecessary impulse purchases. Instead try to shop online as much as possible, so you can easily compare prices at different locations. Also see if you can get plain decorations to jazz up into birthday specific decorations yourself, instead of spending big on themed items.
9. Buy Small Items In Sets
Party favours have become all the rage at birthday parties these days, particularly in circles where the good ol’ lolly bag is not longer the way to go. The best way to serve up decent party favours on a budget is to look early, with a specific focus on anything that comes in a set. We’re talking about classroom packs, things from the dollar store, cheap multi-sets of kids books and so on. These all make great party favours.
10. Do Your Own Favours
If you want to get in on the party favour trend, but you aren’t keen on spending anything on the favours, you can always build ‘favour making’ into the actual party. Get some simple craft supplies and have kids make something at the party in line with your theme, if any. For example kids at a princess party could make their own tiaras out of paper and various glue-able items. If your party isn’t themed, but something like plain tote bags in bulk and let kids paint them as a party activity, then they can take them home as a favour.
11. Entertainers Network
Having entertainment is something that has grown more important to some parents in recent years, and that’s ok. But just because you want entertainment, doesn’t mean you need to spend big on it. Put your feelers out in your network for people you can utilise, like an older niece who loves face painting (you supply the paint), or someone who owes you a favour and is willing to show up in costume.
12. Make A Party Playtime
There are a literal plethora of party games out there that are easy to plan and reasonably simple to manage (depending on the kids involved). These games are generally free to play, or have small ‘prizes’ built in that you can easily purchase from dollar stores. Think about games like keep-up-the-balloon, hot potato, charades, musical chairs, red rover, freeze dance, egg racing, duck-duck-goose, simon says and the three-legged race. Lots of fun for a very small budget!
13. Get Imagination Working For You
If you don’t want to do too many organised games and you aren’t interested in entertainment, there are other options. Our favourite one is to use our kids’ imagination to our benefit. Kids are super imaginative, so create a game they can play themselves that uses their own creative minds. We’ve seen parents create treasure hunts using marbles or stones spray painted with gold and silver paint that has entertained kids for hours!
14. Get Fun For Nothing (hire from toy library)
For parents trying to entertain a large group of kids it can be tempting to buy something new in order to keep the occupied. The money smart way of getting over this problem is to check out your local toy library for toys that you can borrow for the party. Many toy libraries have outside toys like soft ramps, slides and even mini trampolines available for borrowing.
15. Almost Homemade Cake
With the birthday cakes we’re seeing on instagram, it’s no surprise that parents are feeling performance pressure when it comes to the centre of the party. Alleviate your stress, and the strain on your wallet, by doing the cake yourself using a box mix or even a pre-purchased sponge cake. That way you can focus on the decorating, using simple icing or even just some cute, print-at-home cake toppers attached to skewers and sunk into the cake. Simple!