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How to come up with a few 6-year-old birthday party ideas on a budget

Sixth birthday party ideas that won't break the piggy bank

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Tomsickova Tatyana / Shutterstock

Kids absolutely love their birthdays! When it's that time of year, the kiddos are super thrilled to plan a birthday party with all their friends. While a hosting a birthday party fills children with excitement, the prospect has the opposite effect of parents. Birthday parties come with pricey tags especially when classmates are throwing big parties. The truth is though bigger isn't always better and there are six-year-old birthday party ideas that won't break the bank.




45 minutes

What You Need

  • Guest list

  • Venue

  • Party supplies

  • Food

  • Party favors

  • Game ideas

With a little creativity and a lot of love, you'll be able to throw a themed birthday bash your kid and their friends will talk about until the next year. Don't stress, we've got money-saving tips to host a celebration on a budget. Plus, we serve up some sixth birthday party ideas if you're having trouble deciding on a theme.

Kids running with each other at a party.
Robert Kneschke / Shutterstock

Setting up the party

There are a few things to consider when planning your six-year-old's birthday party that will make it not only super fun, but budget-friendly. Follow these easy steps and you'll create a memorable party for your six-year-old without running up credit card bills.

Step 1: Have the guest list sorted

A kid’s party doesn’t need to include everyone and their uncle to be an unforgettable event, especially when you’re on a budget. By age six, it’s likely your child has a core group of friends you know well. Invite your kid’s closest friends instead of the entire class and the whole soccer team.

Step 2: Find your preferred location

Free is always best when it comes to a birthday party on a budget. If you can host the party at home, don’t hesitate to turn your backyard or den into a kids’ party central.

If your home is not an option, consider other inexpensive spaces like beaches, parks, and recreation centers that aren't pricey and offer plenty of room for kids to run around.

Step 3: Gather the party supplies

These don’t have to feature the latest superhero or the most popular character to be a hit. Remember, most of these items are disposable and not worth the extra expense.

Solid-colored supplies and decorations are always a safe bet that looks festive and bright. If you’re throwing a themed sixth birthday party, just be sure to choose colors that go along well.

Step 4: Don't forget to feed those kiddos

Speaking of cake, a home-baked version is a money saver that goes a long way. The same goes for snacks. If you host the party in the afternoon, you’ll save yourself the trouble and cost of serving a full meal. Pizza, hot dogs, and chicken fingers are kid staples that aren't super expensive.

Child doing an obstacle course in the yard.
Sergey Novikov / Shutterstock

Fantastic sixth birthday party ideas

If you’re not an experienced party planner, don’t despair. Here are some of the best 6-year-old birthday party ideas that don’t cost a fortune.

  • Sleepover: Around age six, most children are ready for sleepovers with friends. Nothing beats having your child’s besties over for a night of movies, pizza, and popcorn. Plus, it doesn’t require much work from you. For bonus points, decorate your living room to look like a campsite and make s’mores in the microwave. The kids will adore this.

  • Cooking party: If your child loves experimenting in the kitchen, why not invite their closest friends for an afternoon of cooking? It’s a win-win when you take into account that they make their own food for much less than the cost of store-bought meals.

  • Backyard carnival: It sounds fancy and expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. Making your own carnival games with household items is easy if you have time to plan. Once your guests arrive, these games offer plenty of opportunities to keep the kids entertained. Prizes from the dollar store make the perfect gifts for partygoers to take home. Add face painting and a tattoo station and you’re good to go. If you’re feeling elaborate, rent a cotton candy or popcorn machine for an added surprise.

  • Scavenger hunt: Clues plus treasures equal outdoor adventure for school-age kids. That’s why a scavenger hunt is the ultimate birthday party for children who love action and mystery. Get creative with the items you hide and challenge your guests’ intellect with age-appropriate clues to keep them entertained the whole time.

  • Arts and crafts party: Kids at this age love to create, so why not give them a day full of fun crafts? Whether it’s washable paint, magic markers, crayons, or even stamps, you can keep the kids busy while having them each make a party favor to take home at the same time.

  • Superhero party: Have guests dress up as their favorite superhero character and challenge them to save the day as a group! Wear eye masks, capes, and whatever else goes along with their particular character. This will encourage kids to be creative and also showcase their individuality.

Delicious birthday cake with candles.
VAKS-Stock Agency / Shutterstock

Ways to stay within budget

It's always tough to keep a budget in mind when you're dealing with your kids. If you need a little extra help to avoid going over budget when planning your six-year-old's birthday party, keep these money-saving tips in mind.

Step 1: Play games with what you have around your house.

Have a lot of seats? Then play musical chairs. Have some ties or scarves? Send those kids on a three-legged race tournament. Don't forget the classics like freeze tag, duck, duck goose, and other games to wear those kids out. Use things you already have and turn them into party games and activities.

Step 2: Hit the dollar store and bulk stores.

Skip the specialty party stores. You will always pay more. The dollar store has the same things for a price that you won't get mad at if something breaks. If you'll have a lot of kids over, those bulk stores will be more cost effective than Target.

Step 3: Keep the goody bags simple.

We don't need to keep trying to outdo each other with the party favor bags. Bubbles, stickers, or other little items are just fine. Don't feel pressured to buy expensive goody bag gifts. Most parents know the goody bag contents usually end up in the trash.

Colorful birthday party table with plates and food
Lidya Nada / Unsplash

Don't worry about feeding or entertaining parents

First and foremost, your child's six-year-old birthday party is for kids. There isn't any need to put out a big spread for parents. Doing so only adds more to your bill and will definitely push the party costs over budget. Most parents aren't looking to eat anyway. They appreciate the time to socialize with fellow parents they typically see running past them on the drop off and pick up lines at school.

Your main focus at the party is the kids and not to entertain the parents. They are happy to chat and watch their kids have fun. Don't expect the guest's parents to be your extra set of hands either. If you're looking for party helpers, organize them beforehand. Older siblings and cousins always work well when it comes to running games, party activities, serving food, and helping with cleanup.

Your child’s birthday is an opportunity to make lifetime memories, but it doesn’t mean you have to blow their college fund in one afternoon. At the end of the day, the most important thing for children is the experience, not the fancy food or lavish goody bags. With a little planning and tailoring to your child's favorite things, you'll give them a party the kids and adults will always remember.

Mary Hawkins
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Mary is a writer and editor who has been in the online space since 2009 when she started her former-and-once-very-popular…
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