Inexpensive Adult Birthday Party Ideas

Updated April 17, 2017

Adult birthday parties are sometimes rather expensive, especially if you're not sure of the best way to stick with a budget when planning one. Fortunately, there are many ways you can save money when throwing a birthday party. You may have to sacrifice convenience for some ideas, but you'll certainly keep some extra money in your pocket when doing so.


Birthday party food is often extremely expensive, especially if you have a large guest list. It is important that the food is abundant and tasty for your guests, but inexpensive for you at the same time. To save money at your next birthday party, opt to make your own meals instead of calling in for catering. When you pay for catering, you pay for the food, the food preparation and the delivery of the food. You can keep your wallet and guests full if you make your own food at home. Pick up some frozen appetizers at your local grocery store. Make sure you have some variety; Buffalo wings, mozzarella sticks and shrimp are all fine. Main course items can include homemade chicken Alfredo, homemade pizza (where guests could add their own toppings) or a six-foot-long sandwich made with store-bought meats, cheeses and vegetables. Save even more money by using your own plates and utensils, instead of buying plastic.

You can also inform your guests that beverages such as water and soda will be provided, but they must bring their own alcohol. Though your guests may not be completely happy about this, it will save you lots of money.


If you know someone with an acoustic guitar or other appropriate instrument, ask him to come to your birthday party. In return for him providing party entertainment for a few hours, let him eat the food provided at your party and tip him a few dollars. Your guests will enjoy the live entertainment, and discussing the entertainment is always a good subject-starter for people who don't know each other. Your performer will love the attention and the free food, and you'll save money on entertainment, so everyone wins.


Generally, adults don't need eccentric decorations, unless the party is themed. If you do decide to throw a themed birthday party, make all of your party decor out of things you already have around the house. For example, if you party is tiki bar--based, use green construction paper and cut out little slits of paper on one side. Wrap the paper around a table, which will function as a bar with a grassy border. You can also make your own leis out of old holiday tree tinsel. If you're having a party that requires getting dressed up, put a spin on clothes you already have in the closet. Although you may have to get creative to save some money, it'll make great conversation when you discuss with your guests about how you transformed your home with things you found in the attic or had stored away in the basement.

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About the Author

Amanda Williams has been writing since 2009 on various writing websites and blogging since 2003. She enjoys writing about health, medicine, education and home and garden topics. Williams earned a Bachelor of Science in biology at East Stroudsburg University in May 2013. Williams is also a certified emergency medical technician.