You can plan a Christmas party for free while staying on budget. In fact, I’ll give you 5 fun Christmas party ideas you can do for free to make your party planning simple.
Christmas time can quickly turn from a time of joy and excitement to wanting to wrap ourselves up in tinsel to hide in a box that says, “Do not open until after Christmas.”
And Christmas party planning is no exception.
You do so much to make sure everyone in your family has the presents they need, the holiday spirit is being felt, and gifts are wrapped – just to name a few.
And by the end of the season, you’re left baffled as to how you spent so much money in such a short time.
You might even wonder if all the work was really worth the price tag.
But, what if I told you, you can plan a Christmas party for free while having a lot of fun?
It’s true! A Scrooge-free Christmas party with your family and friends that will make happy memories is just what you need this year.
So, let’s sit down and talk about 5 Christmas party ideas you can do for free (while keeping grumpy Mr. Scrooge at bay).
Don’t forget to call or text everyone to invite them over once you find your perfect party idea.
5 Scrooge-Free Christmas Party Ideas You Can Do For Free
1. Cookie Exchange
Cookie exchanges are a ton of fun!
For those who don’t know how a cookie exchange works, what happens is everyone brings 1 or 2 dozen of their favorite cookie.
The number of cookies depends on how many people you’re inviting to your party.
If you’re inviting 10 people over and expect 10 plates of cookies, I recommend asking everyone to make 2 dozen.
Personally, I like to keep my parties on the smaller side to have the party be more intimate. But, if you’re planning on inviting more than 10 people, make sure you plan the number of cookies people will bring accordingly.
This way everyone has their own plate to take home and the leftover cookies can be enjoyed while people visit together.
Once the cookies are all in a central location, a new plate is given to each person (or couple) and everyone gets in line to take one cookie off each plate to take home.
So, you come with a few dozen chocolate chip cookies but go home with a huge variety of sweets and treats.
PrettyMyParty.com has some super cute Christmas themed cookies anyone can easily do for a cookie exchange. You can find them HERE.
2. Drinking The Good Stuff
How many crockpots were you gifted on your wedding day? Or perhaps when you first went to college?
Everyone at some point is gifted the infamous and wonderful crockpot in all of its sizes and varieties.
Another fun and free Christmas party idea is to invite everyone over and have them put their own crockpots to good use with a hot chocolate taste testing competition.
There are so many fun hot chocolate recipes you can make as you plan a Christmas party for free (you can find a few hot chocolate ideas right HERE).
All you’ll need to do is find the recipe you want to try, put everything in your crockpot (make sure to follow the instructions to your recipe) and place the drink on the “warm” setting.
Everyone can try each of the drinks in small paper cups (minimal cleanup needed) and cast their vote for their favorite. The winner receives ultimate bragging rights until next year.
3. Family Game Night
Whether you’re planning a party at home with family or with a group of friends, it’s always good to laugh.
Do you have a favorite Christmas party or board game? Sometimes getting together for game night (with a little bit of Christmas music playing in the background) can be a fun night full of laughter and memories.
If you’re looking for more “Christmas theme” fun games, then you’ll definitely want to check out these games HERE. They are family friendly and appropriate for kids.
4. White Elephant Gift Exchange
For a more classic Christmas party approach, a good ol’ fashion white elephant gift exchange can be loads of fun.
Remember to encourage people to keep their gift family and kid-friendly (especially if you have little ones who want to participate).
I always found that white elephant exchanges with firm ground rules by the host do far better than the “bring whatever you want” approach.
I understand the whole idea to a white elephant gift exchange is to be silly, get a few laughs, and maybe cause a lot of embarrassment, but, you want to make this worth your time as well (and the time of those you’re inviting.)
A few rules you can set include: no underwear or adult themed items of any kind (emphasize the fact that there will be young children at the party) and nothing liquid or perishable (unless it’s cookies or chocolate).
5. Christmas Caroling
What better way to spend your time at Christmas than to take a few minutes out of your day and sing to those in hospitals and nursing homes.
When I worked as a hospice chaplain, this is something I would do with a group of nurses and others. The residents and family members of those in the nursing homes absolutely LOVED it!
And surprisingly we did too, even though some of us in the group couldn’t sing very well.
The purpose of this Christmas party idea is to serve others and bring a bit of holiday joy to those who wouldn’t otherwise receive visitors. This party idea can easily be paired with one of the other ideas listed above.
As you plan your Scrooge-free Christmas party this year, I hope you remember the true reason we celebrate Christmas.
Whether you do a cookie exchange, a hot chocolate contest, a white elephant party, or if you go Christmas caroling to those who need a smile, remember to hug your family and friends a little tighter each night.
Christmas was never meant to be about the gifts, the lights, or the unnecessary bustle of the day. This holiday is so much bigger and meaningful.
So, as you give your loved one an extra cookie, or pour them a cup of eggnog, remember the reason for the season, and remember how blessed you are to have so many good people (albeit imperfect) in your life this year.
Merry Christmas, friend.