Cheap and Fun Party Ideas To Throw With Friends

Jun 4, 2020 | Entertain, Lifestyle, Relationships

It's always fun to get together with friends, but sometimes it's hard to come up with ideas for what to do. Luckily for you, we've got 8 super fun party ideas that will knock your friends' socks off and make them want to get together again and again. Bonus? The kids can join in on the fun, too!

A toga party costume party is so much fun! With kids, without kids, it's one of our favorite fun party ideas here at Fun Cheap or Free

Spending time together with friends is so important, especially if you don't have any family around! As an adult, it can be a lot harder to connect with and find time for friends. However, that doesn't mean that it’s not still important for us to cultivate those relationships. Hopefully these fun party ideas will make it easier to take that leap and find the time to have fun with your friends—or to make some new ones!

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All these fun party ideas are pretty simple to throw together and won’t break the bank. And BONUS, they can be adapted to be kid-friendly, so bring the kids and make it a family event! If you’re looking for some simple ways to connect with your friends, we've got 8 fun party ideas for you to check out. Keep reading to learn more!

This post was originally contributed by Britney from Color My Happy! It's since been updated with even more family fun ideas.


Learn something new with your friends and family at your next get together! Fun party ideas from Fun Cheap or Free

We love learning new things! It pushes you outside your comfort zone, gives you confidence, introduces you to things you may have never tried otherwise, and is tons of fun! You can hire a professional to come teach a skill or take a class together as a group. But for a cheaper option, look to your group of friends! More than likely, you each have a special skill to share with the rest of the group.


Get creative! This is a fun way to get to know each other a little better, share tips, and learn new skills. It's also a great way to teach your kids some new skills! You can never go wrong with a fun DIY cooking class at home with your friends and their kids. You can set up stations around the kitchen and have each set of parents teach a different kitchen skill!


Is anyone well-versed in the ancient art of karaoke?! Whether you've never done it before or you're a pro, it's still so fun! You can do it from the comfort of your own home with a karaoke machine, or even use your phone to pull up and sing a song while holding a hairbrush as a microphone. Don't forget the snacks!


We love a good potluck dinner! It's a fun way to get friends together without having to spend too much money - Fun party ideas from Fun Cheap or Free

Potluck dinners are so fun and so easy! Have everyone bring a food item to share, then get together to eat and chat. This gives you plenty of time to catch up on each other’s lives, get advice, gab about the latest episode of The Bachelor, and more.

The best part? All the work doesn’t fall on one person. You can provide the main dish, then ask everyone to bring a complimentary side or dessert. Or you can assign something specific to each person. Whatever works best for you and your friends.

Kid Tip: Be sure to have kid-friendly food at your potluck, especially if there will be picky eaters! While a kid can survive on a meal made out of bread, it's always a good idea to have some protein and veggies in there, too. 😉


Game night is one of the simplest, yet most fun party ideas out there! Grab your favorite game or grab some slips of paper and play Celebrity or our famous Bowl Game.


Grab your favorite games and some friends for a fun night of playing! We have some great tips for hosting the perfect game night, so be sure to check those out!

Kid Tip: If your kids are going to be around, let them join you! OR set them up with their own kid games to play while you play with the adults. They'll have fun either way!


Book club is always a fun way to get together with your friends! Party ideas from Fun Cheap or Free

Another idea is to host a book club. You can make this as simple as you want—simply get together and discuss the book. Or as all-out as you want—costumes, themed food and activities, watch the movie version, etc. It’s all up to you!

This is also a really great activity to do with families. Each family gets to bond while reading the book together (either separately or out loud), then you get to come together as friends and have a book club party!

Kid Tip: Read the book Wonder by RJ Palacio. Serve sack lunches while you watch the movie, then spend a few minutes afterward talking about kindness, writing your own precepts, or reading the picture book version, We’re All Wonders.


In high school, we would have 80’s nights where we’d dress-up and go out. We got a lot of weird looks, but we always had a blast! Those nights were sure fun, but would we really still have the guts to go out in public like that anymore?? The good news? The same thing can be recreated right at home. Pick a theme, invite friends over, encourage costumes, eat themed food, and play themed games. Seriously, so fun!


  • Different decades. Pick your favorite and go with it!
  • Ugly sweater
  • Occupations (this one would be especially fun with kids)
  • Clever t-shirts
  • Luau
  • Pajamas/Sleepover theme
  • Disney
  • Superheroes
  • Literary Characters
  • Animals
  • Toga

Dressing up doesn’t have to be just for the kids! Pick a theme and plan your costume party. Take turns hosting the event and make sure that everybody brings their share of the food.


Pick a category of food and host a cook-off with your friends! It's such a fun way to get new ideas of how to cook something and exchange recipes when it's done. It's also pretty fun to be the winner of a chili cook-off!


Create a simple scoring sheet for attendees to fill out, and then have a prize for the winner. This fun party idea is sure to be the talk of the month! If you have a lot of friends for this, try splitting up the categories so that you end up getting a little bit of each during one cook off. Instead of trying 8 different pots of chili, go for 2 pots of chili, 2 different types of grilled cheese, 2 pies and 2 homemade ice creams.


The basic idea behind the traditional favorite things party is that everyone brings a favorite item, then writes their name on a slip of paper. Each person talks about why they love what they brought, then draws a name out of the bowl and that person gets to take home the item.

There are many variations, ranging from free to expensive. Choose a price limit within your budget, or make it free and just come and talk about your favorite things without the exchange. This is also a really fun activity to do with families to talk about your family favorites! You can even take things up a notch by doing a themed favorite things party.


  • Movies
  • Music
  • Games
  • Road Trip Activities
  • Vacation Spots
  • Books
  • Outings
  • Recipes
  • Gadgets
  • Tips
  • Date Nights
  • Beauty
  • Fashion
  • Home Management

Favorite things parties are some of our FAVORITE nights, ever! We always walk away with some great recommendations and it’s always a blast.


The best thing about all these party ideas is that they can easily be turned into monthly traditions! Pick a day and week that works (say the first Thursday of every month) and call it Potluck Night (or game night or book club or whatever party idea you choose).

This ensures you’ll spend time with your friends every month and takes the pressure off deciding what to do each time. It’s decided for you! You can even create a rotation to take turns hosting, choosing themes, etc.

So pick one of these fun party ideas, call up your besties, and have some fun! Make sure that you check out the other posts in our series on strengthening family relationships:

What are your favorite fun party ideas with friends? We're always looking for new ones, so let us know in the comments!

Family friendly party ideas to help you connect and build relationships with friends from Fun Cheap or Free

Want to make sure you have plenty of time in your life for a weekly or monthly friends' night? Then you've got to try out Productivity Boot Camp! It's a super fun online video program that will help you get your life in order and organized, opening up more time for the things that you want to do.

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