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How to Throw a Great Summer Party on a Budget

Ready to throw your first big summer bash? If you’re not careful, the party costs can spiral out of control pretty quickly. It’s important to stay creative when it comes to planning the party.  Just make sure your dreams aren’t bigger than your wallet.

The first thing to do is to start with a budget. Keep it small if you really need to save money and limit the guest list to family and maybe a friend or two, or vice versa. Here are some other ideas we’ve come up with.

Online Invitations

There are some great websites that let you design and send out your invitations completely online. There may be a small fee but it will be a fraction of the cost of printed invitations or store bought and mailed invitations. These online notes can even be personalized.  As an added bonus, the site will be a great place to store your guest list.

Discount Party Supply Stores

If you don’t want to spend too much on throw-away items like plates and utensils, stick to the generic varieties.  Discount party stores or online party stores have huge varieties.  Alternatively, you could assign one or two guests the task of bringing these items.


Bring your own food! Have everyone bring their own item to grill while you provide all the extras like condiments, lettuce, tomato, and onion. You could also create some food ahead of time and freeze it, such as lasagna, or make simple dishes that feed a lot of people. A pasta salad is always a crowd pleaser as are meatballs, a ziti bake, or chili.


Bring your own booze! As a host, you can provide the beer and wine and ask your guests to bring anything else they might want. Beer can be found at a pretty low cost, especially at the warehouse stores, and there are some great wine discounts stores in most cities.


Keep it simple. A few well-placed candles or some flowers can add to the mood. Or, why not choose plants instead?  Pick up some flowers at a home garden store for a few dollars and some cheap pots at a dollar store. Then place the pots around for decoration. After the party, you can either have the guests take them home or plant them in your own yard!


The cheapest option, and often the best way to ensure good music, is to go the DIY route. Just load up the iPod with a party mix playlist and plug it into your speakers. No hassle, no worry!

There you go. These are a few ways we’ve found to surround yourself with family and friends and enjoy summer. And, if you need a little extra money to throw your summer bash, SideMoney can help with that. Just take some online surveys, download some apps, and watch a few videos to earn extra spending money for your summer party!

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