Black mortar board hat and gold tassel for graduationGraduation is all about celebrating your grad’s accomplishments. All of their late nights and hard work finally paying off so they can go on to get the dream job on this path we call life. It is not, however, about going into debt over napkins, balloons and beverages. Fortunately, Ebates is here to wow you with graduation party ideas that will save you money, time and headaches.

Paintbrushes in a glass on the tableThe DIY Approach

No one will ever claim that the DIY angle will save you time or headaches but the personalized touches and beautiful effects are well worth it for a one-of-a-kind graduation party. You could go wild with all of the creative ideas available on Pinterest but it’s best to keep it within your wheelhouse.

Simple projects include tissue paper pompoms and folded fan rosettes that offer a big impact without breaking the bank. Elicit the help of friends and family to decorate in the colors of your grad’s alma mater. Create a flashback that’ll bring tears of joy with printed photos displayed by string and mini binder clips. Of course, if you’re not so handy yourself, Etsy has plenty of DIY artists to lend you a hand so you can get the look without the time commitment.

Woman taking photo with smartphone of friend outsideDigital Maven

We live in the era of technology so there’s no reason you can’t use it to your advantage. Switch that analog photo display to a computer created slideshow. You (or your tech-savvy friend) can create a slideshow to play on digital picture frames or a television. You can even get your graduation announcements and graduation invitations with a digital yet personalized effect through Minted’s beautiful online invitations. Cut the DJ cost and create a custom playlist with all of your favorite songs and blast your creation from a powerful Bluetooth speaker. Encourage your loved ones to use a custom hashtag on Instagram so you can collect all of the images in one convenient spot. You’ll be able to keep the party planning organized and have a digital record of your special celebration for years to come.

2-For-1 Special

If there are multiple grads in the family, why not stack the celebration? If you split costs with other hosts, you can save on everything from the décor to the photo booth supplies at Michaels and enjoy the benefits of a big party without all of the expense, especially when you use a promo code for additional savings. You can even share graduation cakes and top it with a personalized image of the honorees together. Often times, guests are only spending a few hours at an individual’s party before moving on to the next graduate on the list, so the partnership will keep people enjoying your party for longer.

Plan Ahead

You don’t have to wait until the weeks before graduation to start planning. In fact, you can stock up on things months or even years in advance. Purchase party supplies after graduation season and find sales of 50% off to even 90% off in some cases. Even some food items can be purchased and stored in the pantry or freezer for later.

Snacks and food spread at partyB-Y-O-Whatever

There’s no shame in asking for a little helping hand. Ask everyone to chip in on the festivities by bringing something to the shindig. Borrow their tables and chairs, ask them to bring their own beverages or even make it a potluck occasion.

Keep It Simple

You don’t have to rent a banquet hall and hire entertainment to have a good time. You’ll have a memorable experience with the ones you love wherever you are. Host the soiree at your house and get your family or friends together to create simple decorations. You don’t have to host a four-course meal either. Friends and family will be hopping around and mingling with each other so keep the food to a manageable antipasti that offers a variety of grab-and-go options. The snacks will save your budget and prevent someone from manning the grill the entire time.

Blue box wrapped with white ribbon gift presentAttending a Party?

If you’re attending and not hosting, we still have tips for you. Things Remembered offers a great collection of personalized items perfect for graduation gifts. Personal tokens are a great symbol to celebrate their accomplishments. Or you can keep it practical with gifts for their new home – which is thankfully no longer a dorm room. They’ll need furniture and fixtures to fill their new space. Or, if you want guaranteed success, graduation cards with a financial contribution can be used towards whatever they need.

Graduation season is a time to celebrate so just remember to have fun. Kick off the next step in their life with a degree in their hand and earn Cash Back at Ebates to save you money on all of life’s moments.

Kids kissing their mother on the cheek

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