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Sweet 16 Party Cost

How Much Does a Sweet 16 Party Cost?

low costLow: Less Than $350-$5,000average costMedium: $10,000-$25,000high costHigh: Up to $200,000+
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  Typical costs:
  • A sweet 16 birthday party for a teenage girl can cost $300-$25,000 or more, with options ranging from a casual sleepover party to a formal ball resembling a wedding reception. The total is most influenced by the number of guests (just a few friends to extended family and a large group of friends), the type of food (snacks and dessert only or a full catered meal) and location (free or rented).
  • Inexpensive parties typically cost $5,000 or less, while moderate parties can cost $10,000-$25,000. For example, one person describes a $350 birthday sleepover for 20 girls at her home at Birthday Party Ideas[1] , featuring sandwiches, cake, breakfast the next morning, a photo scavenger hunt and prizes. At Teen Party Ideas[2] , one teenager outlines the $6,500 budget for her own party, which included simple invitations, catering for 100 people, a $400 dress, a DJ and personalized party favors.
  • Some high-end sweet 16 parties, such as those of teens featured on the MTV show My Super Sweet 16[3] , can cost more than $200,000. Shanell's sweet 16 party[4] was an Oscars-themed party on a boat, and she shopped in New York City for her dress and traveled to Italy to buy a pair of custom-made dress shoes. For her present, her parents bought her a Mercedes and gave it to her in front of all her friends.
  • Invitations for a sweet 16 party typically range from $1-$3 per card. For example, eight invitations from Kid's Party World[5] cost about $10.
  • Food and cake for a sweet 16 party typically ranges from $100 for simple snacks and sheet cake for 10 guests to $2,000 or more for catered dinner parties with 50 to 100 guests. One Fine Party[6] in Thousand Oaks, CA, estimates that a catered dinner party with 45 guests at a home might cost $1,800 with appetizers, dinner, cake and drinks.
  • Sweet 16 decorations typically cost $20-$200 or more. Birthday Direct[7] sells coordinating sweet 16 balloons, paper products and banners for $2-$13 each. For a ballroom party, Shindigz sells a decorative lighted party arch[8] for $200.
Related articles: Wedding DJ, Wedding Caterer, Cake, Quinceanera

What should be included:
  • Sweet 16 parties may be sleepovers, karaoke nights, formal balls, and anything in between. The theme largely determines the decorations, which may include flowers, balloons, personalized banners and party favors. Sweet Sixteenth Birthday[9] details creative sweet 16 party themes and ideas, like a ropes course, dance competition or carnival.
Additional costs:
  • Party favors for a sweet 16 typically cost $1-$3 per guest. Beau-Coup[10] has a favor box "cake" which doubles as a centerpiece for $42, which can be filled with candy for 66 guests. Do You Need a Favor[11] has a variety of favor in this price range, like candles, photo frames and custom lollipops.
  • Hiring a DJ for a sweet 16 can cost $100-$300 per hour. A basic, three-hour DJ package from CJ Sound[12] near Buffalo, N.Y., costs $425.
  • Party dresses at Forever 21[13] and other discount retailers are an affordable option for many teens, at less than $35 for special occasion dresses. To save money, teens can also swap dresses with one another for special events like sweet 16 and prom.
Shopping for a sweet 16 party:
  • Party 411[14] provides a sweet 16 party planning checklist, and recommends beginning the planning 6 to 8 weeks before the party. In order to reserve a caterer or venue, party planners should make reservations months in advance.
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