When the round of birthday invites start showing up in your kids’ backpacks or in your mailbox, it can cause dread; for your calendar and your wallet. The kids jump for joy to have pizza, cake and fun.
We jump to make a birthday gift appear without breaking the bank.
The number one tip I have is “Don’t shop for a birthday gift when you need a birthday gift!” You are going to grab the first thing you see and you will be apt to spend more as a result.
Instead, shop all year long for birthday gifts. Shop for different genders and age ranges. Store your fun finds in a spot in your home. When the invitation comes, you are ready with a gift on your budget.
Here are some other tips and tricks for saving on birthday gifts.
Inexpensive Birthday Gift Ideas
Cut out expensive wrapping paper and bows. Use the free catalogs you get in the mail for a one-of-a-kind wrap. Or use the brown grocery store bags for the kids to color for a custom cover for your gift. Use letters in the magazines to make a unique gift card!
Big box stores, specialty stores and even bookstores have clearance sections. Whether they are making room for the new season, bought too much of one thing or the product box has a dent in it, their snafus are savings for you. Look at end-caps or in the back of the store.
Shop the dollar bins and dollar stores
You can find some cost-conscious gifts that are still creative and cute. Most of the time, you can find items to put together for a themed gift. It will make the dollar finds look like a million bucks.
Do it yourself
Craft kits are very popular, but not so popular with your pocketbook. Instead, make or create your own. Find a wooden container, pencils and embellishments for a perfect pencil holder. Alternatively, find a wooden frame, writable duct table, markers and a photograph for a custom creation – for not a lot of cash.
Treats, not toys
Find an inexpensive container and fill it with your friend’s favorite candy or candy in their favorite color. It will be a sweet birthday treat that is also a treat for your wallet.
Think outside the Toy Box
Consider shopping at places like the pharmacy, grocery store or home improvement stores. You are going to find creative items. For example, I found this plant for $1, the container for $2 and then I got some fun garden accessories for around $3. Then I had a fun and frugal fairy garden. I also found a bird feeder, and bird food on clearance at my local home improvement store. I then added a bird book (and you could add binoculars) for a gift for your favorite ‘peep’.
Check out my segment on NECN where I go over these tips and more!
Saving money is often all about shopping ahead and thinking outside the box. Do you have any tips to share?