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help - do I say something and risk upsetting friends?

42 replies

slayerette · 25/04/2007 12:56

Two friends of mine are holding a joint birthday party for their children - soft play followed by meal at fast food place. They haven't mentioned anything but I think it's assumed that we'll all pay our own way on the day as well as bringing a birthday present for each child. I want my child to go to the party because he likes the children involved, but it's going to be quite expensive! Should I say something? - and if so how, without sounding mean? I just think it's unfair to hold a party at a place where people have no choice but to pay if they want to go. Advice appreciated!

OP posts:

saadia · 25/04/2007 12:58

I would have thought they would pay for the play and food, that is the norm. If you are sure that you are expected to pay and it's too pricey then I would just make an excuse.


princesscc · 25/04/2007 12:59

Why don't you ask how much a party at this soft play place costs. That way you can first be 100% sure that you are going to have to pay. That way, you can look suitably shocked when she says you have to pay yourself.


WigWamBam · 25/04/2007 12:59

Ask them! It's the only way to find out.

And I'm sure they won't be offended if you ask what the plans are.

If you don't want to ask outright you could just say that you want to make sure you have enough money on you to cover everything, and could they let you know how much it's all likely to cost. You might find they're covering it all.


tigerschick · 25/04/2007 13:01

What makes you think you're going to be expected to pay? I'm not up to speed on these things but I would have thought that it would have been made very clear when the invitation came if you were expected to.


Blu · 25/04/2007 13:01

Whenever DS has been invited to this sort of party, the host has always paid.

It is fair enough for you to feel anxious - just say to the parent in advance - how much will we need to pay for the entrance and meal? And they will either tell you - or say 'nothing!'
How old is your child? And are you expected to go along fpr the whole trip too?


kslatts · 25/04/2007 13:03

If they haven't said you have to pay for your child I would guess they are covering it. I think it's unreasonable for them to expect you to pay and take a present.


TheWoman · 25/04/2007 13:03

We've had parties at these sorts of places, and the parents of the birthday children have always paid the entrance costs and that of the food.
I think you should check with your friends, as it would be unusual for the parents of the guest children to pay for them.


DeviousDaffodil · 25/04/2007 13:03

Agrre with Blu.
Nothing to loose by asking.
If it is a party , i would assume they are paying.


OrmIrian · 25/04/2007 13:04

I'd be very surprised if they expected each child to pay. Never known that happen before. Are you sure?


slayerette · 25/04/2007 13:06

WWB - that's what I think I'm going to have to do - just say that I need to budget for it in my week's spending. Am going to practise my shocked face, princessc!

Tigerschick - if it had been that kind of invite I wouldn't have worried - we've had lots like that before. But this has been planned in a ' We don't want to organise something at home this year, so we're all going to meet at soft play instead' kind of way, no written invites or anything.

OP posts:

slayerette · 25/04/2007 18:45

Update - well, it is a pay your own way thing so I'm off to raid the piggy bank...

OP posts:

NoodleStroodle · 25/04/2007 18:47

I can't quite believe that! It's a bit like ex-friends of my parents who gave a bill to them at the end of a weekend stay - I kid you not. You can't invite people to a party and ask them to pay. If money is tight why not just to the fun bit - the playing - and then bow out of the fast food junk meal - I am sure you have somewhere you have to be!


greenday · 25/04/2007 18:53

Agree with noodlestroodle. what audacity to invite someone along and then expect them to pay. Moreover, these 2 friends are sharing the party, so wouldn't costs be reduced already?


pesme · 25/04/2007 18:55

bloody cheek! can you maybe go to soft play and pass on food? (personally you would have to pay me to do either)


slayerette · 25/04/2007 18:56

I think that's even worse, Noodle! Can just imagine adding up a bill for a visit - 'Well, they used half a roll of toilet paper and used our toothpaste four times...' Can see why they're ex-friends! Just so because DS knows about party and I can't not take him. Well, the kids whose party it is will be getting very small presents this year!

OP posts:

noddyholder · 25/04/2007 18:57

Cheeky so it is not really a party but a get together with the added advantage that the kids get presents.I have been doing birthdays for years and have never heard of this.


Scootergirl · 25/04/2007 18:59

Don't take a present - no-one will know in all the partying..... I've always thought the present is something of a trade-off for the time spent amusing other people's children/cash spent.
I bet there's not even party bags!


slayerette · 25/04/2007 19:04

Well they were discussing whether they were going to bother with a cake or not, so not holding my breath for party bags, Scootergirl And poor DS will be really disappointed - I know he shouldn't be materialistic, etc etc but he does love party bags for some reason!

OP posts:

NoodleStroodle · 25/04/2007 19:06

If there is no cake and no party bag then it isn't a birthday party - more a just lets meet up for the kids to play. No presents!


Scootergirl · 25/04/2007 19:11

Spend the money on a pretend party bag for DS instead! Or CAT me your address - I've got literally slagheaps of party bag crap left over from DD's party cos I over-compensated for Daddy being away by buying tonnes of junk


slayerette · 25/04/2007 19:26

Definitely like the idea of pretend party bag - will pop it in my bag just in case! Thank you for the offer but I think if I root around in my cupboard, I have a little pile of 'party bag stuff' also!! Do we all buy too much plastic junk??

OP posts:

smittenkitten · 25/04/2007 20:00

you def don't need to take a present! a card made by your lovely DS will be fine!


MagicalMay · 25/04/2007 20:22

Just wanted to say i think they are being tight.
Im having a big 'picnic in the local park' on my DD's bday and im not paying for anyone as its an open invite to all.
The day b4 im having a full day of activities that i am paying for. - AM party for the kids (activities/food/cake/party bags/the lot) - evening till night close friends and family(food/drink/more cake/adult party bags}.
If i was not doing this then i would pay for the picnic but cant afford to do both.


Blu · 26/04/2007 11:44

I can fully understand - and sympathise with - parents who cannot afford to pay for a group of kids to go to SoftPlay and a meal - but then why choose to do that? Have people to your house, or a picnic!

I think they are being very presumptious expecting everyone to pay to celebrate thier children's birthdays. But you can probably get away with a very small bill at the fast Food place, can't you?
And when you offer reciprocal invitations to your DS's party, give them the bill for the sandwiches, crisps and drinks!!


kimi · 26/04/2007 11:57

Um what sort of people have a birthday for their children and expect people to pay their own way????

I have never herd of this before.

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