Having a Low Cost Kid’s Party


Last month we threw a party for my little girl and we spent a fortune. Where we live it is traditional to hold a party in the nursery and invite all of the other children there.

In her nursery this meant inviting about 70 young children to join in. You would think that a bunch of under 5s would be a cheap crowd to invite to a party but the money just dribbled away on one thing and another.

This got me thinking about how I could make her party less expensive next year. The following are the best ideas I could come up with to make this happen.

Print Off Stuff and Make Stuff

We discovered just too late that there are websites where you can print off just about everything you need instead of buying it. This is a great idea if you have some spare time, as it is good fun as well as cheap. All you need is a printer and some paper to get started. You can print off hats, banners, invitations cards and just about anything else you might need. If you are handy at any crafts then life is going to be even easier for you. All you need to do is get thinking about what you can make; from outfits to the decoration to the cake. There is no point buying expensive items for the party when most of it is cheap and easy to make. If you aren’t particularly craft minded you could ask a friend or relative if they could help you out and maybe pay them a small fee, which would be a lot less than you would be paying otherwise.

Be the Entertainment

My daughter is afraid of clowns, which is apparently a common issue with kids. Because of this we just hired a group of guys to turn up with music and dress up as cartoon characters. Barney the dinosaur was there and so were Smurfette and Winnie the Pooh. It was pretty good entertainment but it was a lot of money for some music and maybe 10 to 15 minutes of guys in costumes dancing about with the kids. I could have arranged the music myself and hired some cartoon character costumes. It’s probably pretty hot inside those things but I could have persuaded a couple of friends to join in and we could have taken turns going in and dancing with the little ones. It sounds like a good idea for taking more of an active part in the party as well.

Make the Food

The food for the party was another big expense. If I am being honest it was the thought of making food for so many children which put me off the idea. It just seemed so much simpler to pay someone. On reflection, it wouldn’t really have been all that difficult make 70 hamburgers or 70 hot dogs. It would also have a lot less expensive, as this was one of the main costs of the day.

Fill the Place with Cheap Decorations

A bumper bag of balloons from your local supermarket could turn out to be a very smart investment. These are cheap to buy and make any room look great for a kid’s party. If you think of lots of cheap and interesting decorations like this you can easily fill a room with the stuff kids love. We made the mistake of buying a few expensive decorations like a giant Barney doll when it would have cost a lot less to do it this way.

12 Responses to Having a Low Cost Kid’s Party

  1. moneystepper says:

    Good tips. I would hate the idea of spending loads of money on other kids just because they went to the same nursery as mine!!

  2. You could also make the crafting of the party hats and banners the entertainment for the party. Each kid gets to make and decorate their own party hat. You just need some construction paper, tape, and markers.

  3. Since I have a three year old who will turning 4yrs old soon. I need some creative ways for birthday parties. Good stuff.

  4. You should have seen me nodding my head in agreement as I read the tips you shared. They’re exactly what my family’s been doing to keep the costs down during birthday parties. Honestly though, just like you, we learned from experiencing a costly party first. 🙁

  5. Ugh, we used to spend SO much on parties for our kids. Now we just make the food, the decorations, and plan some fun activities, and the kids have just as much fun as when we blew a boatload of money. 🙂

  6. Jon M. says:

    Great ideas! We rarely spend very much on the birthday parties for our daughters. The best so far has been a party we had AT Home Depot. It started with a simple phone call and ended with an amazing party that didn’t cost us a thing. I’m sure this was a one time thing, but it was really amazing! Most of our other birthday parties have been at home or in the gym at our church building…which is free to use. (Found your post on the Personal Finance Carnival @ Aspiring Blogger.)

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