You want to plan a birthday party on a budget, but you don't want to be cheap. Don't worry, there is nothing wrong with setting a budget and then spending only the amount you decided on. In fact, it's one of the best ways to keep from going overboard. Using less expensive items and ideas doesn't mean it will be less of a party. The best parties are those that are well planned, not those that cost the most.
The first tip is don't try to outdo your friends' birthday parties, and don't try to outdo yourself each year. When it becomes a competition, you will end up spending more than you should. You can plan a birthday party on a budget and still give a great party. It just takes a little more effort. There are other tips to keep in mind when you plan a party, such as persuading your friends to help with entertainment.
If one of your friends can draw well, ask him or her to do face painting at the party. If someone you know can do a few magic tricks, perhaps he or she will be willing to perform. Since the plan is to keep the birthday party within a limited budget, try bartering with your friends. Offer to baby-sit sometime or agree to help out when it comes time for your friend to give a party.
Another good tip is to limit the amount you will have to spend on food. This is not difficult do accomplish if you plan carefully. Not only can you take advantage of sale items, but you can also choose to have your party at a time of day when people have already eaten. Shortly after lunchtime is usually a good choice, since you can simply provide snacks instead of heartier foods. It also helps if you make most of the food yourself, including the cake.
Whenever you plan a birthday party on a budget, it can become difficult to incorporate themed items. Since there are so many items available for any given theme, you can spend a lot of money in no time purchasing all of them. But, don't give up on that theme party yet. Rather than choosing all themed items, choose a few then alternate with color-coordinated items that are less expensive. For example, you can use themed tableware but use an inexpensive, solid colored tablecloth instead of a themed one.
To create a good mix, and keep a birthday party on budget, use your imagination and make substitutions where possible. The most important part is to have fun. You can still give a great party that everyone will enjoy, even with a budget.