Who doesn’t love a good party, right? As you find yourself going to more parties this holiday season, you may be inspired to host your own. However, throwing a party, or simply having friends over, isn’t always cheap. It may be challenging wanting to please everyone while still staying within a reasonable budget. But it’s not impossible! For those of you who love to host, here are a few tips to help you plan your next gathering.
- Plan ahead. Start creating a budget and guest list months in advance. To avoid overspending, you can begin calculating the cost of drinks, decorations, food, and entertainment. Also, consider whether you want your party to have a theme so you can keep that in mind while shopping. As things start to come together, you’ll realize how much wiggle room you have financially.
- Ask your guests to pitch in. Remember it’s ok to ask for help. Ask your friends and family to bring their favorite recipes or Even if you don’t ask, people will most likely bring something anyway, out of common courtesy. This will save you a lot of time and you’ll have more food options for your guests to choose from.
- Don’t give your guests time to get bored. You can keep the energy up by having a game night or movie night, where everyone brings their favorite board game or movie. Also, you can create your own party games that may include different challenges with homemade prizes. Remember you can always keep it old school and stick with classics like charades or Uno.
- Whether you’re having good conversation or a full-on dance party, consider creating a playlist for your get together. You can use apps like Pandora or Spotify to make your own playlist or simply choose a station that works for the crowd. Be sure to cater to your audience. If you notice people are really into their conversations, consider putting on some light jazz or something simple as background music. If you notice people getting into the music, consider starting up karaoke or putting on something a little more upbeat.
- Supplying alcohol for a large group of people can be expensive. Consider other options like having one festive signature cocktail, asking people to BYOB (bring your own beer), or sticking with non-alcoholic beverages. If you go with a signature cocktail, you can make the drink in advance and you only need to buy one or two types of alcohol. If you choose not to serve alcohol, consider serving something else like hot chocolate or a punch.
- Keep it simple and save money by sending out digital email invites. This way you don’t have to spend extra money on postage for physical cards and people are most likely to RSVP faster over email. If you search online you can find email invite templates that allows you to add designs or messages to your invites as well.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to true hospitality. Hosting doesn’t have to be financially stressful. The priority is to create a space where friends and family can share in wonderful moments together. While it’s normal to get excited during the party-planning process, remember to take a step back and enjoy the environment you created.