If money were no object, oh the parties we could have! But we can’t rent a gorgeous hotel conference space for every party like in the movies, so what’s a girl to do? We’ll tell you! Here are some free and low cost party venue ideas that those of us in the real world can afford – and enjoy.
Free Party Venue Ideas
Yes, I’m pointing out the obvious, but try looking at it with new eyes.
If the problem is that you just have too many on your guest list for your space, consider alternatives.
- Instead of having a sit-down dinner, have an appetizer cocktail party. Move the furniture into another room and just have a table with appetizers. Everyone stands and mingles. Low lights, soft music and maybe a couple of chairs for the ladies in high heels to rest their feet for a minute. (See Appetizer Party: All the Fun for Less)
- If you don’t have a table in your apartment or only a small one, you can still invite people over for a meal. We have gorgeous wooden TV trays that we use for serving family & close friends when we gather around the TV for a movie. Think of it as an indoor picnic, or go for gold and put a fancy little table cloth over it. That way all the place settings don’t have to match each other either! It’s more comfortable than eating in your lap, but you can have that kind of get together too.
- Clear a space for the party. Yes, it’s a lot of work for one day, but all that muscle saves money. And it’s easier than lugging everything to another venue.
- If there’s not enough parking, organize a shuttle. Drive guests from a parking space to your house if necessary.
A friend’s place.
If your friend has a lovely garden or the perfect party space, ask them to co-host a party with you. You hold the party in their home but agree to do the work and clean up afterwards. Co-hosting may even mean paying a part of the bill, but then you have to be willing to compromise to their ideas, too.
If you have a friend that owns an office that’s closed on the weekend, they may let you borrow a meeting room or lunch room for your party. Make sure you leave it spotless – you may want to borrow it again. (And you may have to invite them to the party, too.)
There are lots of party themes that suit having a get together at a beach.
- choose a spot away from more public areas (but not too far from public restrooms)
- yes, it can be a costume party – everyone will be so envious of the fun you’re having
- plan well so you won’t have to carry a lot of things to your spot – make sure someone sits with your party paraphernalia while others go back and forth from the car & get everyone to pitch in and leave the place immaculate
Ask parks & rec if there’s a spot where you can hold an outdoor party. You may have to get a permit or pay a small fee.
Restaurant or Cafe
Yes, this is kind of cheating. Technically, you do have to pay. But many restaurants have a side room where you can have a party if you buy the food from them. The venue is free. If you don’t cook, this is a great alternative.
If you want everyone to pay for their own food to keep your party costs down, this is the perfect choice. Just be sure that all guests know that they are paying for themselves! And check with the restaurant about their decoration policy if your plan was to go all-out in that category.
You could go to a winery for a wine tasting experience. Ask to reserve a spot for your group.
Low Cost Party Venue Ideas
Rent a hall.
Your local library probably has a large room you can rent for a reasonable amount. Many have kitchen space now, too.
Ask the YMCA for their fees and rules.
A local church may rent you a room. Of course, this probably means an alcohol-free party.
Many buildings have a space to rent. Be creative. Call some places near your home that have enough parking.
Check online to see what the lower-cost hotel and motel lines charge for a small conference room. You may be surprised.
Be sure to actually look at the space to make sure it is suitable before you rent. Don’t go by photos on the internet or what the person who answered the phone tells you. I’m speaking from experience here!
Yes, you have to pay for the experience but the venue is free.
You can get everyone together for a creative class such as cooking, painting, a craft like jewelry making, dance lessons. Ask if your group can have the venue to yourselves if you have enough joining in the class.
You can go bowling and ask if you can rent a room there to party in afterwards.
A yoga studio may be willing to have a class just for your group and let you have smoothies somewhere in their building afterwards.
You can all enjoy an experience together like mini-golf and then go for ice cream afterwards.
Yes, it’s a party even if there aren’t balloons & decorations. You can be a Merrymaker that comes up with the great ideas that everyone enjoys. You don’t have to foot the bill. If you get everyone together and they have a great time, that’s a party.