Throw a Kid’s Birthday Party on a Budget

Throwing a memorable birthday party for your child doesn’t have to break the bank. With a little creativity and planning, you can host a fun-filled celebration without hurting your wallet. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to throw a kid’s birthday party on a budget, from venue to party favors. By following these tips, you can throw a fantastic kid’s birthday party on a budget without sacrificing fun or quality.

Throw a Kid's Birthday Party on a Budget

These days, throwing a children’s birthday party can quickly turn into an expensive project. You can end up spending a small fortune booking venues, sending a lot of invites, and buying that all-important cake. Also, food for a lot of guests, decorations, and hiring entertainment. The point of the party is to celebrate a birthday and for the kids have to have fun. But it doesn’t have to be more than your budget can bear. These are creative ways to make the party special even if it is not a milestone birthday year. With higher prices for everything and the current cost of living, ostentatious spending is not really a flex, but saving money might be!

Pick a Venue

To throw a kid’s birthday party on a budget, opt for a free or low-cost venue such as in your backyard, a local park, or community center. These places often offer space at minimal or no cost. And hosting the party at home can be a more hassle-free option for busy adults.

Schedule the party on a weekend if the birthday takes place during the school year. It will also be more cost effective to hold the party outside of meal times like lunch or dinner. Or before nap time for younger children. This also keeps you from feeling obligated to provide a whole meal for guests. And you can offer simple drinks, finger foods and snacks to help stay within your budget.

Send Evites and Free Printables

To save on postage, invite guests to the party by sending a cute evite by text or email. If you want to hand out or mail party invites, you can save on invitation costs by using our free printables (download below). Or use other free printables available online. You could also use the invitation to ask guests about dietary restrictions or food allergies before buying supplies for the party.

Consider only inviting close family members or your child’s best friends to keep the guest list small. This can significantly cut down on costs for food, drinks and party favors.

Throw a Kid's Birthday Party on a Budget

Cute but Affordable Party Decor

Plan ahead and choose the theme and color scheme for the party. If your child has a favorite licensed character like a superhero or a cartoon character, you could add a helium balloon or two or a table decoration to fit that theme. You could add plain cups and other decorations in the colors to fit the theme rather than spending a few extra dollars on licensed decorations. Discount stores like Five Below, Dollar General Store and Dollar Tree have a good selection of generally themed birthday party decorations like banners, signs and tableware.

Save money on decorations by blowing up your own balloons. Instead of buying a lot of helium balloons from a party store, you can buy packs of colored balloons. Or even cute confetti balloons like these from dollar stores. There are small, inexpensive balloon garland kits available. Or you could make your own balloon swag or garland. An easy DIY balloon decoration (pictured above) can be made by tying clusters of balloons together with white or light blue thread. Hang them from the ceiling or tape them to the walls. The light colored thread is easy to tie, and it just disappears.

To add a personal touch, print or hand make a banner for the birthday kid with their name on it. There is a good selection of free printables online that you can use for fun DIY party decorations. Add some classic crepe paper streamers in cheerful colors like this kit from Dollar General Store. This is an inexpensive, easy decoration to create even more of a festive party setting. Utilize items you already have at home. Such as tablecloths and colored string lights, to help decorate without spending extra money.

Place Settings

Consider using your own silverware, glasses and plates for a more eco-friendly option that also saves money, if you are hosting a party for an older child. If you are afraid of breakage, embrace the classic disposable partyware esthetic! These adorable sprinkle plates from Five Below, and these fun napkins from Dollar Tree could be used with any birthday theme. Dollar Tree has a great selection of solid color utensils and drinkware like these purple tumblers to choose from. Buy small plastic bowls to put servings of fruit salad next to each plate. A combination of canned fruit garnished with grapes and maraschino cherries is a frugal, but perfectly delicious snack kids will love!

DIY Birthday Cake

To stretch your budget further, bake a box mix cake or cupcakes with ready-made frosting instead of buying a decorated bakery cake. Even if you aren’t an experienced baker, there are easy ways to decorate a cake your kid will remember for years to come! Sprinkles instantly add more to any cake. You can usually find as assortment of them in the baking aisle of any grocery store. Use sanding sugar to add sparkle. You can also use colorful candies like Nerds, Skittles, Gummi Bears and m&ms to add more fun to the cake instead. Use small discount store toys like these dinosaurs from Five Below to decorate the top of the cake. They came in a set that included smaller dinosaurs that also can be used as extra party favors. Small toys make extra-special cake toppers that the birthday kid can keep after the party!

Or, you can simply use classic birthday candles to top the cake. Use a number candle, candles that spell “Happy Birthday”. Or combine colorful birthday candles like these with other cake toppers. A wide variety of all these can be found at Dollar Tree and other discount stores.

Throw a Kid's Birthday Party on a Budget

Keep the Menu Simple

If you throw a kid’s birthday party on a budget, keep the menu simple. Snacks like chips, pretzels, crackers, punch and single bottled waters or seltzer waters are inexpensive offerings to go with the birthday cake.

Check with guests for dietary restrictions or food allergies ahead of time. You could even ask them about this on the party invitations. This information comes in handy when buying supplies ahead of time for the party. This will help all guests feel included, and you can buy food and snacks that will accommodate them without really having to go over your budget.

Budget-Friendly Party Activities

Plan budget-friendly activities to keep the kids entertained. Forego that expensive bouncy castle and set up outdoor games like sack races, treasure hunts, or a piñata if the weather is good the day of the celebration. During the winter months or during rainy weather, you can’t go wrong with classic games like musical chairs and duck duck goose. Setting up a movie corner with blankets and pillows for a cartoon movie marathon could also be a good indoor activity to keep children entertained. Another idea is to use our free printable coloring pages, or get free printable coloring pages online and make copies for the kids to color. Each kid could also get their own small pack of dollar store crayons to take home.

Instead of hiring entertainment, put on a costume yourself or see if one of the other parents is willing to suit up if they cosplay a character, or if they have one of those popular T-rex costumes. This could be a fun surprise for the children and won’t cost anything but some time and effort.

Throw a Kid's Birthday Party on a Budget

Inexpensive Party Favors

Put together treat bags filled with discount store candy to include by each child’s place setting. Get multi-packs of modeling dough and bubbles from Dollar Tree and divide them up among the children to save money on party favors. Sticker packs that include multiple sheets of stickers are inexpensive and can be split up as party favors too. These are party favors that have a wide appeal, and that any kid can enjoy.

A way to help out the parents of the children coming to the party is to set a limit on the dollar amount for each gift. This way guests don’t feel obligated to spend more money on their gift to the birthday kid.

You don’t have to break the bank to throw a fun birthday party for your kid. Your child will remember how much fun they had, and won’t have any idea how much you spent. It will feel special to them because of the care you put into it, and all their best friends were there having a great time!

For other great ideas about how to throw a kid’s birthday party on a budget, take a look at these suggestions!

Frugal Kids Birthday Party Ideas from This Tiny Blue House

Birthday On A Budget For Kids from Sweet Frugal Life

Tips for Frugal Birthday Parties from This Crafty Home

Kids Party Food on a Budget from

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