Planning an Engagement Party on a Budget

An engagement party is a special way to celebrate your recent engagement with your closest friends and family. It’s also a great way for wedding guests to get to know each other and for the hosts to practice speeches or cut a cake!

Hosting an engagement party doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. If you’re looking to have an engagement party on a budget here are a few tips for decorations, food, and invitations.


When it comes to invitations the modern approach is becoming much more popular for brides and grooms in the form of e-invites, email invites, wedding video invitations, or paperless invites. I designed our engagement invitation with Canva. I also printed some “save the date” cards with gold card and some stickers. Simple cost-effective arts and crafts.

[Original size] Mint Save the Date Wedding Instagram Post

The Venue

We did some research a few months before the engagement party for a venue back in New Plymouth. Some said they were over $5000 just for a day which seemed slightly ridiculous. One place I’ve loved for years is Joe’s Garage they have the most amazing food. Plus, Aaron and I have gone there for dinner a few times so it’s somewhere we both like going to. Joe’s Garage were amazing hosts and it was free to have our engagement party there which meant we could allocate more towards the wedding.


One wedding website I’ve always had my eye on is Lively & Co. They do fun decorations for engagements, hen’s nights and weddings. Since one of our key colour themes is gold for the wedding, yes I think of every detail, I got the engaged party pack with some cute mini rings, a big ring balloon and engaged banner for only $32.


Food & Drink

This part is where most of your money gets spent. We had our engagement party just after lunch at 2pm until about 6pm so we could provide small nibbles like garlic bread, pizza and fries on our tab. Everyone is different, but we thought providing food was a nice gesture for people who had travelled far!

Getting a fancy beautiful cake done is something we’ve already booked for the wedding. So there’s nothing better than a cake from a bakery at a supermarket and my Mum got us a lovely heart shaped one. It still delicious and gets eaten regardless of whether it costs $200 or $30.


Toasts & Gifts

Speeches were something my Fiancé and I thought was a good way to get in some practice for the wedding and thank people for attending. My Step-Dad made a nice speech as well! Marriage is a wonderful way to reunite with people we hadn’t seen in a long time and celebrate this exciting next step in our lives as an engaged couple.

As for gifts, not all guests will bring one or feel like they need to but some might not like showing up empty-handed. It’s something Aaron and I was quite relaxed about. If guests bring a gift definitely show your appreciation and put them on a table. It’s a good idea to open the gifts later on after the party. We loved reading the messages on our cards!


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