When you’re trying to stick to a household budget happy occasions like birthdays can suddenly fill you with dread. The cost of presents, parties and catering can hit you hard when you’re trying to live frugally. If you save ahead for such events, then you may have a budget in mind for the celebration. Even if you haven’t got a pot set aside, you can throw a party without breaking the bank.
Start by figuring out what you can afford. It isn’t always a good idea to accrue debt for a one-off event, so try to leave the credit cards in your wallet. Next you can decide if you can afford to hire a planner and rent a venue. If this is beyond your reach, don’t panic. You can save a lot of money by hosting the party at home, and manage all the party planning yourself.
Choose your guest list wisely. Fewer people mean it will cost less. However, remember this is a party. You’re celebrating, so it’s important to make it good. Buffets cost less than sit-down meals when it comes to catering. And buying in bulk works out cheaper per head. Look for multipacks and the big value bags when it comes to the food. You could also use the opportunity to use up those things lurking at the back of the cupboard that you wish you’d never bought! If they’re in date, see what you can make.
Now the food is covered, it’s time to think drinks. Punch is a popular drink that you can make really cheaply. You don’t need to put much alcohol in it at all. And if you’re catering for a kids’ party, you can use different squashes and cordials to make up an interesting soft punch. Make the ice-cubes in your home freezer, and add a few pieces of fruit to create a beautifully presented drink.
Decor at the party can be quite easy too. Disposable or single-use items can be bought quite cheaply. But if you’re going to be hosting a few parties this year, why not buy some items that can be re-used? Lights make the biggest impact at a party, so invest in some colorful strip lighting to highlight your party area. You can place it under coving, along the floor, or even under the furniture to great effect. Best of all, you can use it again, anywhere you like.
Balloons can be purchased almost anywhere. They just require a bit of lung power and some sticky tape to fasten them to the ceiling or the walls. You can pay for printed balloons, but it is sometimes more fun for the kids to decorate them. They can use markers, or stick paper pictures to their balloons to create a theme. Having happy helpers at the party also takes the pressure off you as the host.
It’s possible to have a really great party on a budget. It can look good, provide the perfect party atmosphere, and be great fun to put together. Try a budget party for your next big celebration.