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Throw a kids party on a budget with these party ideas and tips so you don’t break the bank when throwing your kid a birthday party.

Throwing a kid’s party can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be! There are many fun and affordable ideas that will make your child’s party a success. Today, I’ll go through several of the most effective strategies to save money while still having a good time. I’ll also provide some helpful tips on how to plan the perfect party on a budget. So whether you’re looking for ideas for food, decorations, or activities, read on for some great tips!

Planning is crucial

Timing is everything when it comes to a budget-friendly kids’ party. Avoid throwing a party during the holiday season or on weekends, as these are usually peak times for events. Instead, opt for weekdays and make sure you plan ahead of time by sending out invitations early so guests have plenty of notice to make arrangements if necessary.

Realistically, it would be fairly hard for guests to make it on a weekday. If you have to pick a weekend, choose a time after lunch when people are unlikely to be eating since they will be full from eating lunch.

The Party Location

Have a party outside in your backyard or park instead of a venue. Having it outside also save you time cleaning up your house! You’ll also get to take advantage of the beautiful weather (weather can be a pro or con when planning a party). Plus, kids love playing outside!

It’s cost-effective to share

If you have friends with kids who share a birthday or a birthday month, why not have a party together? You’ll save money on a party location and simply share the food and decorations cost.

In June, my two girlfriends and I have one party at my home since our children were all born that month. We split the food and beverages bill. They provide a birthday cake for their kids. As a result, all three youngsters receive three cakes. Usually, we only split on food unless my friends want a specific decoration for their kiddo. Otherwise, I decorate every year with whatever party supplies I have already.

Party Decorations and Party Favors

simple party decorations
Photo by Sven Brandsma

The secret to finding the greatest bargain on party decorations and party favors is to keep an eye out for sales throughout the year. The best places to find some are the Target dollar bin and the Dollar Tree. Opt for white or a design you know you’ll use again at other times, such as Thanksgiving or Christmas when purchasing tablecloths, plates, and cups. You can buy party stuff such as balloons, candies, and piñatas in bulk if you want to save money. Get party decorations that can also double as a party favor, such as mini dinosaurs wearing party hats, or stuffed pandas for an adopt a panda station. They look pretty displayed during the party. The kids get to take them home afterwards. And another win is the kids basically cleaned up that part of the decorations for you!

If you are looking for affordable party decorations, consider using items you already have around your home or buy decorations you can use year after year. A fabric or felt “Happy Birthday” banner with neutral tone can be used again and again. Just add your child’s theme around the banner.

I have used an air-filled number 9 balloon twice. I used it for my friend’s daughter when she turned 9, and then for my older son when it was his turn. This year, I will turn it upside down to use as the number 6 for my other son.

Balloons, streamers, and crepe paper make great decorations that can be easily customized to match any theme.

Party Invitation

The party invitation can sometimes be a very expensive part of the party. Everyone loves receiving a beautiful party invitation, but it doesn’t have to cost you money that could have gone to food.

You can DIY a party invitation at home. Simply create a simple party invitation in a program such as Canva and print them out yourself. You can use the Panda invitation I created in Canva for your next party. It’s free.

You could also hand-write the invitations if you’re feeling crafty.

Instead of sending the invitation through the mail, you can send as an e-vite and save some money on paper and stamps.

Party Favors

At a party, it’s not always necessary to provide party favors. The children will recall the experience rather than the trinkets they received. If you must have a party favor, I propose making a little dessert and attaching a gift tag to thank your guests for coming. You don’t have to purchase the dessert. Have your kids bake boxed mix chocolate chip cookies or something similar. How about separating all those Girl Scouts cookies you bought from your children in a nice gift bag, and handing them out at the party with a cute gift tag.



Food is key

When it comes to throwing a memorable and affordable kids party, remember food is key. There are plenty of budget-friendly options available. Serve up a variety of snacks such as fruit, veggies, dips, chips, and cookies instead of opting for a full meal. Here are some simple food ideas for your party.

Your kid’s cake does not have to be fancy. If you have the time, consider baking your own cake at home and decorating it to match the theme of your party. You can also opt for a store-bought sheet cake or cupcakes. Spread apart cupcakes are trending right now.

Pull apart cupcake cakes are highly popular these days. Cupcakes are arranged in a particular shape before being frosted and decorated simultaneously into what looks like a cake. When it’s time to eat, you just take the cupcakes apart and hand them to your guests. No plates or forks necessary. It’s also a great grab and go treat/party favor.

Budget-Friendly Party Games

You don’t have to hire a magician to make your party magically fun. There are plenty of affordable games and activities that will keep the kiddos entertained. Try a few of these classics:

– Pin the tail on the donkey (or whatever party animal you want) -A classic children’s party game involves blindfolding players and having them try to pin a tail on a donkey.

– Balloon toss – When you throw a balloon and someone else catches it.

-Bean Bag toss – A game where you throw bean bags at a board to score points.

– Treasure Hunts -A fun way to find new things. You can go on treasure hunts by yourself or with other people. You can also make your own treasure hunt.

– A piñata bash -A party game in which players take turns hitting a piñata until it breaks open and releases its contents.

-Bubbles – It’s always fun when there are bubbles at a party. You can have huge bubbles and fun shape bubbles.

You can also have no-cost party activities. My sons and their friends enjoy playing Red Light, Green Light. It keeps them entertained for a good 30 mins. Freeze tag is also very fun. Simon Says no-cost party activities are fun!

The best party entertainment is one that doubles as a party favor: A craft project. Give each kid a craft box to work on together. As a party gift, they can take it home once they’ve completed their creation.

Need more party activity ideas? Here are 32 backyard games and activities.

Throwing a great budget-friendly party doesn’t have to be hard.

If you do your homework and prepare ahead of time, you can have a budget-friendly party that your kid will think is the best party ever!

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