Nothing beats having a close group of friends. These are the people you can spill your secrets to, and you know that they’ll always be there. That's why, when one of your friends’ birthdays roll around, you want to make it special. Isn't that what friends are for? This is, after all, your chance to show them exactly how much their friendship means. You might have dreams of throwing big parties or buying a massive gift to take their breath away. The only downside is that these big gestures can cost big bucks.
Realistically, it's important to remember that your best buddies don't want you to put yourself in debt for the sake of their special day. They certainly wouldn't want you to feel as though you had to spend a fortune. Let's face it; your happiness is guaranteed to be more important to them than some sweeping birthday gesture.
Does that mean that you can't ever give your friend a special birthday? Of course not! When it comes down to it, your friend is sure to have a better time if you put thought rather than money into their big day. All you need to do is consider the following ways to stick to a stricter birthday budget.
Handmade gifts for gold
When it comes to cutting costs and still keeping birthdays special, it doesn't get better than handmade gifts. In years to come, you can guarantee that something you've made yourself will be much more precious to your mate than the latest designer handbag. And, still, you can save yourself a small fortune by doing things this way. You could make your own beauty products, or knit them a one-of-a-kind new item of clothing. You could even make them a stylish new piece of jewellery which is unlike anything else out there. It doesn’t matter. The point is that you save money and still hand over a gift which your friend is guaranteed to love. All you need to do is think ahead to make sure that you have plenty of time to make everything to a high standard. Remember, for example, that you might want to start knitting that jumper now for their birthday next year!
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A gift right to their door
If friends live far away, birthdays can be difficult. You still want to see them and hand over your gift, after all, but costs can fast skyrocket. Not only would you have to pay for a present upfront, but you would also need to worry about petrol and potentially even hotel costs to get it to them. That’s why the next option for saving is to send a meaningful gift right to their door. There are now all manner of delivery services like these available. You could wow them with a fresh online flower delivery first thing on their birthday morning. Or, you could make use of Amazon's gift service to send them something special. Then, you could make sure to catch up using a free program like Skype. That way, your friend would get all the birthday attention with none of the added expense for you.
An experience which doesn't cost
If your friends do live nearby, you could cut costs even further by opting for a birthday experience which doesn't cost the world. Sure, taking them to a luxury spa for the day might sound incredible, but it's expensive. Your friend will appreciate that. After all, you couldn't expect her to pay for herself, so you would have to cough up for at least two expensive tickets. What's more, you may find that you have a lot more fun with an experience which doesn't cost the earth. Packing a special picnic and going off to somewhere idyllic as a group could be better than a spa anyday. Equally, taking them off for a relaxing day at the beach could do the trick. You may even find that a girly pamper day at home is a much more enjoyable experience for everyone. Make your own beauty products for that too, and you could slash costs even more. Why not offer to babysit on your friend's birthday so that she can have at least one day which is all about her? Or, just ask your friend what she wants to do. The chances are that she'll have some cheap options in mind which can ensure she has the day she wants, without your having to meet with the bank manager to achieve it.
Share those costs
Failing all the above, you could always opt to share birthday costs with others in your friendship group. Remember that you aren't in this alone. The chances are that every other friends are worried about spending too much here as well. So, get together and talk it out. You may soon find that donating a small amount of money each to a large gift allows you to get something your budget would never have stretched to alone. Or, you could opt to spread the cost of your friend's ticket to that spa day, or even to a theatre show or hotel. While you would still need to pay for yourselves, doing things this way could take a great deal of financial burden from your shoulders. Even if that all sounds too expensive to cope with right now, something as simple as asking everyone to bring a different dish to a dinner party could do the trick. That way, you could host a fine dining experience for your friend without any one of you having to stress about the amount you're spending.
A final word
Saving money on birthdays isn't all that difficult. You may even soon find that doing so allows you to tailor a meaningful experience you would never have achieved if you chucked money at the situation. All you need to do, then, is plan in advance and consider how exactly to cut costs while still giving your friend the birthday gifts and experiences which they deserve.