June 17, 2015

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How to Throw the Perfect Graduation Party with @Upromise #UpromiseGraduation #sponsored

 Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Full Disclosure Policy


Upromise by Sallie Mae believes that everyone should have the chance to go to college and pursue their dreams—and therefore is quite passionate about celebrating the season of graduation! Friends, family and loved ones will all ‘turn the tassel’ this spring and summer for ceremonies ranging from kindergarten graduation to college commencement. Even when budgets are tight, taking advantage of free-to-join programs like Upromise help get a head start on the savings process—without drastically changing spending habits.  

Upromise is a free to join membership service that allows families to earn cash back for college through every day purchases.   Upromise members can earn up to 5% cash back just by shopping with Upromise partners —including more than 850+ online stores and 10,000+ restaurants, grocery and drugstores. Popular online retail partners include Macys.com, Staples.com, Groupon and more.

Upromise offers different ways for users to allocate their cash back earnings to help plan, save and pay for college. Upromise members can:
  • Transfer earnings to eligible 529 plans or high-yield savings accounts
  • Apply earnings to eligible student loan repayment
  • Request a check for cash for books and other expenses
  • Split up earnings across multiple beneficiaries (perfect for those of us with multiple children entering college close to each other!)

Graduation can be expensive for many families, so be sure to earn cashback for education when you shop through Upromise.com.    With graduations fast approaching, check out the tips below on how to throw an amazing party your graduate will be sure to remember!

How to Throw the Perfect Graduation Party
Note: These tips are from Erin Condon, president of Upromise by Sallie Mae

·         Dine on Something Delicious: One of the most important parts of any party is the food! However, not everyone likes to cook and catering is usually associated with a huge price tag. However, with the Upromise dining program, you can earn 5% back when you buy from participating local restaurants!

·         Provide Party Favors: Though not expected, simple party favor bags can be a great way to thank guests for taking the time to celebrate with you. Upromise partner Walmart.com has great options like these fun goodies that can double as party d├ęcor

·         Offer Party Games: A good host always manages to keep their guests entertained.  Be sure to have a few games or activities readily available that are fun for parents and students alike.  We recommend having a few activities that are physical and a few that you can play sitting down. For instance, check out these fun games from Upromise partners Sears.com and Kohl’s!

·         Make a Photo Memory Board: One staple of the modern day graduation party is a memory board, including pictures of the graduate growing up. Utilize the Upromise eCoupon program at your favorite drug or grocery store to save money on printing out the physical photos!

·         Ask for Gifts that Keep on Giving: Guests inevitably bring gifts to graduation parties. Why not ask them to contribute to the graduate’s college fund while shopping? With Upromise’s Friends and Family program, they can donate a portion of their savings to your children while shopping online where they would normally shop – after all, it takes a village!

Here are some of my tips:

  • Get creative!  Shop online at Jo-Ann and pick up some felt/fabric in your graduate's school colors and cut it into squares and tie it up around pots of flowers to make cool centerpieces! 
  • Why spend a ton of money on soda? Instead make up lemonade and iced tea and serve in drink dispensers from Kohl’s.  The elegant glass shapes will look great on the tables. Have enough made to refill the dispensers when you run out!
  • Make it an evening party and have a campfire. Use cool apothecary style glass jars full of s'mores fixings.  
  • Invitations! Can't forget about invitations, while most the younger crowd are more likely to text each other the details, share on social media, etc.; the older crowd prefers snail mail invites!  Make sure to order some photo invitations from Shutterfly or Walmart and even earn cash back in the process!

Looking for graduation gifts on a budget? Check out this post for some great tips that won't break the bank!

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