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Graduation Celebration on a Budget

table set up at a graduation party - black tablecloth with graduation banner and yellow and black balloons

Now that we’re in the month of May, we’ll be seeing lots of graduation parties in the next couple of months. While these parties are lots of fun, they can also cost a lot of money. Especially if you have a large group of family and friends to invite. We want to share a few ways to help you save on your graduation party.

5 Ways to Save on your Grad Party

1. Venue

One of the largest costs for any party can often be the venue – especially if you’re required to order food through them as well. If your home is large enough to accommodate guests, consider hosting the graduation party yourself. You can put up a tent and bring in tables and chairs to make extra space and avoid paying a venue rental fee. However, if you need a larger space that only an outside venue can provide, remember to plan far in advance. Here on the Big Island especially, there are a limited amount of venues and many get booked for other events like weddings and baby showers months in advance. Planning ahead will give you a better chance at getting the date you want, at the venue you prefer.

2. Split the Costs

Chances are, there is another family member or close friend who is also graduating. Consider having a joint party where the costs are split between both families. If you have many of the same family and friends it may almost make more sense to celebrate together instead, and keep it budget friendly. Plus, your guests will only have one party to attend instead of two!

3. DIY Décor

Instead of spending a fortune on a decorator  you can make your own! Lots of times it comes out cheaper to make your own decorations, like table runners, table centerpieces, photo backdrops, etc. versus paying someone else to do it. Using your creativity and recruiting some friends and family to help will help cut costs in this area. Don’t forget that you can utilize resources like Pinterest and Amazon to help you with your decorations.

4. Digital Invites

In the past, invitations went out through the mail, incurring costs in printing, envelopes, and not to mention postage. In today’s world however, digital invitations are a great solution to keep these costs minimal. Instead of collecting mailing addresses, you’ll just need everyone’s email address. Oftentimes you can buy a digital file for an invitation, which costs just a few dollars, and can be sent as an attachment in your email. RSVP’s can also be done by just replying to the initial email that you send. If you have some family members that aren’t tech savvy, it’ll cost much less to print and mail just a few invitations for those people, versus mailing to everyone.

5. Get Creative with Food

Food is often the number one cost at any party, especially if you have to order food through a chosen venue. When it comes to the meal, get creative when planning your party. For example, breakfast foods are simpler and often less expensive so you could have a graduation party in the morning. Buffet is the go-to choice for most local parties, so think about recruiting any of your family members that are gifted chefs to help prepare some of the dishes for the day. You could keep it simple, like finger foods and appetizers, or go for an all out Hawaiian luau. Whatever you choose, just make sure you’re comfortable with the cost within your budget.

However you decide to host your grad party, don’t let it bust your budget and keep you from enjoying the celebration. Try out some of these ideas above to keep it simple and under budget. Do you have other ideas to share? Drop them in the comments below!