Parties on a budget

Kids parties can be hugely expensive. With growing pressures to keep up with the Jone’s, kid’s parties can be a big stress if you’re on a budget. 

The good news is that you don’t have to spend a fortune to give the kids a good time. In fact, we’d even say the kids will quite possibly have more fun if you don’t!

When it comes to parties, kids love simplicity! They don’t need loads of different things to have a good time. It’s amusing to see, that often the more lavish a party is, the less the children enjoy it. Quite simply because there are too many activities competing for the kids’ attention: a bouncy castle in one corner, entertainer in the other, then a face painter, a mascot thrown in for good measure and why not a popcorn machine? Sounds amazing but it’s too much!

Kids will become frantic and not be able to concentrate on very much for very long and it’s usually a big stress and panic to squeeze it all in to the 2 hrs.

But having less does not mean doing away with the fun. Far from it. 

The first thing is to decide what you want to do for your kid’s party. Give your child a few options and ask what they think they might like.

Themed children’s parties have loads of mileage and give you a lot of room for creativity at very low cost.

Costumes- You can have a lot of fun making your kids costume and it will cost you nothing. e.g. a pirate costume -get out the scissors and snip away at an old white shirt and tatty old pair of school shirts/ trousers, and a nice red scarf around the head.

Or what about fairy wings cut out from card board and covered in pink wrapping paper and sprinkled with a bit of glue and glitter. These give just a few ideas of how to make costumes from very little. 

Party Invites – if you are computer savvy and have a bit of creative flair you could do your own cool invites on the computer, of just do an Internet search for party invites and download free templates available. 

Make your own Cake – the sky is the limit when it comes to cake ideas.

Decorations – balloons are very cheap and usually all you need to create a super party atmosphere. Just have lots of them!!! You could also make your own colourful paper chains, or get some reasonably priced party decorations from any online party store.

Entertainment – every party needs some sort of entertainment. You could of course do the entertainment yourself but you’d need to be confident you could lead a group of kids through sufficiently fun activities for 2 hours. If you can’t then this is something you might want to budget for. if you are hiring a Children’s entertainer then this is likely to be where most of the cost of your party will go, but you needn’t spend a fortune – if you went for a week day after school, then entertainers are far more likely to give better deals as weekdays are not as busy as weekends. or a morning slot like 11 am – 1 pm

Food – parents can work tirelessly in the kitchen to create the most amazing party food but you’ll be surprised how little kids can eat at parties so do remember this before buying loads or going to loads of trouble. If you want to keep it cheap and simple, sandwiches and crisps and a few finger foods like sweets and small fruit like strawberries, grapes etc. is perfect. Finger food is always best. But if the creative guru in you can’t resist to try and dazzle and amaze, then you can be super creative and theme your food in so many different ways whilst still sticking to your budget. 

Party bags often go in the bin or get left lying around the minute kids get home if they’re just cheap toys, so you might want to settle for a piece of cake and a small but decent quality toy. Or maybe give kids a small pocket sized children’s story book. This has become increasingly popular and kids are far more likely to keep them. You can pick them up in shops for about 50p – £1 each.