Are South African parents ready for fiver parties?
Instead of spending money on expensive gifts with all the birthday parties happening every weekend, more and more American parents are getting on board with the fiver party. It's simple: moms request that each attendee gives $5 (a “fiver”) to the birthday boy or girl as their gift, and everyone wins. We're wondering, could this take off in SA?
When sending out invitations for a fiver party, moms request that each attendee gives $5 (a “fiver”) to the birthday boy or girl as their gift, instead of going out and buying presents. (iStock)
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Fiver parties are big in the US at the moment, and honestly, just thinking about the over-the-top multiple-jumping-castle bash we went to last week, the Frozen-themed party for three-year-old party-pooping Olivia we have to attend this weekend and the gift we already need to start thinking about for next week’s shindig, has us hoping someone will start a petition to make all kids parties in SA, fiver parties.

Here’s how it works: When sending out invitations for a fiver party, moms request that each attendee gives $5 (a “fiver”) to the birthday boy or girl as their gift, instead of going out and buying presents. It makes things easier for parents, yes, but it also gives the birthday child an opportunity to go to the store and choose a bigger, more special gift – one they’ve probably been dreaming of ever since they saw it on Ryan ToysReview.

Experts say that’s probably better for the child too. 

Apart from honing in on the obvious skill of teaching your child to be responsible and effectively manage their money, social psychologist, Susan Newman, explains that too many toys often unfocus our kids’ minds. The fewer toys they have, the better it is for their development, she says. “Fewer toys result in healthier play, and stronger cognitive development. It’s the quality of the play – not the sheer number of play-items – that made [sic] the difference.”


Also read: Kids can’t hand out party invitations at school? Fair? Or are we being a little too sensitive?


$5 is about R75, which, for many parents is a fair amount of money to spend on a gift. But it’s insensitive to assume every parent can and should dole out that amount, while we also wouldn’t dare suggest grandma ONLY spends R75 on her darling grandchild.

This makes fiver parties, or making the decision to have one, tricky. A better approach would be discussing it with your mom group before the time and, perhaps, deciding on an amount together.

Chances are, many parents will agree that a party every weekend has both burned a whole in their pocket and completely consumed most of their Saturday. They’d be all too keen to get on board with a fiver party and sign that petition. 

No more last minute trips to the supermarket that ends in tears because you didn’t buy your little one a brand new Hatchimal too? 

No more pacing up and down the toy aisle to match the outrageous amount Lily’s mom spent on a Harry Potter LEGO set for your kid? 

No more stressing about whether they already have this particular Paw Patrol stuffed animal? Didn’t Teigen’s mom also say she was going to buy him a Chase? 

And no more unwanted toys and LEGO turning their bedroom floor into a minefield? 

Where do I sign? 

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