Sure, you could have a normal birthday party with cake, friends, and presents. But as you get older, that can sometimes be boring. Your birthday is a day to do you and things you enjoy. Instead of doing the expected, use the time to try something new, scary, or something you don’t usually feel like you should spend money on.
If you are wondering what to do on your birthday, look at this list. You may find a spark of inspiration or a chance to try something completely new you never thought of trying before.
10 Things to Do on Your Birthday
1. Painting and Wine
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If you want to drink and have been thinking about getting a new painting for your living room as well, then a painting class can be a great mix of both. It can be something fun to do on your birthday with your friends and family or by yourself.
Look in your area for popular painting and wine classes, such as Painting With a Twist, Sip and Paint, or something more local. You often get treated to one free drink and can buy more as you are taught how to paint.
If you want, you can book a special class and pick exactly what you want to paint, or you can look around your birthday and pick a class that looks like fun. Most of them have quite a variety, from fun Disney scenes to Bob Ross copies. You can even find ones for your favorite animals, phrases, or mythical creatures.
Even if you have no experience painting, these classes will make you feel like an expert, showing you cheats, simple ways to get certain effects, and walking you through the process step-by-step.
2. Take a Trip to Get Freebies
Have you ever seen videos about all the free items and foods you can get on your birthday, but you aren’t sure how to get started? There are hundreds of companies that offer free food or drinks on your birthday.
Some bigger chains include:
- Arby’s – 50% off any sandwich or wrap
- Applebees – Free dessert
- Auntie Anne’s – A classic pretzel
- Baskin-Robbins – Free scoop or discount on birthday cake
- Buffalo Wild Wings – Order of birthday wings
- Culver’s – Small Sundae
- Dairy Queen – Blizzard BOGO
- Olive Garden – Free dessert
- Panda Express – Random exclusive offers
- Subway – Free 6” sub and a cookie
- The Melting Pot – Free chocolate fondue for two
- Waffle House – Free waffle
There are many more places as well, and your local restaurants and drink places may also offer their own discounts. It is worth noting that for most of them, you have to register at least a few days in advance, so when you have a free weekend, sign up for everything in your area and make a plan of where to visit.
In addition to food and drinks, some companies also offer discounts on their products, such as Bath & Body Works, Best Buy, Disney, IKEA, Ulta, Sephora, Victoria’s Secret, and the World Market.
You can spend the whole day traveling around your city and nearby cities to get as many free and discounted items as you could want. If you are social, bring along a friend or two.
3. Go to a Psychic
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Whether you are a believer or not, it can be fun to go and get a reading. You can find a psychic that uses glass balls, palms, or tarot cards to see what your future has in store for you. If you want, you can even purchase your own tarot card deck or a palm reading guide and practice with your friends.
No matter what your beliefs are, going to a psychic can be a fun experience. Just think about it the same way you and your friends used to use apple stems to guess the name of your future boyfriend, or those apps that determined how compatible you and a crush were based on your names.
It may give you something fun to hope for, or it may set you in motion to make something a reality when you decide you like the sound of your future.
4. Donate or Volunteer
While birthdays are meant to be all about you, there is no reason you can’t use the time to help others. If there is a program or problem you are passionate about, such as ending hunger, helping the elderly meet their needs, or educating children, look for local charities to help.
Some may not take volunteers because of the unique services they offer, but you can always donate. If they do accept volunteering, you can gather a group of your friends and get to work cleaning up trash, passing out food, or even gardening.
Sometimes, donations don’t have to be money either. For your local food or pet shelter, see what they need more of, go to the store and stock up before bringing it back. It doesn’t take much out of your day and can make a world of difference to other people.
You can spend the week before and after your birthday asking people for donations to local charities instead of presents as well. Then, even if you don’t have the money yourself to offer, you can make sure that the charities are getting something.
Volunteering can even be fun. Go and take dogs on a walk, or socialize small kittens. If you are social, you may enjoy talking to people while serving at a soup kitchen, or getting the excuse to be outdoors while you are planting trees. Volunteering doesn’t have to be hard work or draining.
5. Get Away From it All
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If you are a parent or have a demanding job, all you might want for your birthday is time to yourself. So do it. Book a hotel and go spend the weekend on your own doing nothing but having fun.
Many people think that getting a break is expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. If you can’t afford to travel far, just get a hotel in your city or the next city over. You don’t have to tell anyone where you are, and you can easily turn off your phone and ignore everyone.
Whether you spend the weekend shopping or just mindlessly scrolling through social media doesn’t matter. Just enjoy yourself and give your body and mind the time they need to rest and heal.
Who knows, you may feel like a whole new person at the end of your restful weekend… for a while anyway.
6. Hire a Chef
Private chefs often seem bougie. They are usually fairly expensive, and unnecessary. But on your birthday, you can make an exception. Find a private chef to make you their signature dish, or to make a dish you’ve been dreaming of eating again but is too complicated to make yourself.
You can hire them for one meal, or see if they will plan out your whole day of meals, from breakfast to dessert. It’s like going to an all-day restaurant but you don’t have to deal with a waiter or other people around you.
They can make meals just for you, or for your whole birthday crew. Many of them can even set out snacks for you and your guests to eat throughout a party. That way you don’t have to worry about cooking for everyone, or even cleaning up at the end. You can truly just relax and enjoy yourself on your birthday.
7. Visit Someone You Haven’t Seen in a While
Do you have a friend or family member that lives in another state or country? Consider taking a few days off and using them to go and visit. You get to go and see a new place, or revisit an old one, and see someone that you haven’t had close in your life in a while.
If you are close, surprise them with the visit, or you can plan it in advance and create a whole schedule of all the fun things you want to do. Plan out restaurants, activities, events, and time to go shopping or relax.
While it can be fun to explore a new place, you can also just use the time to relax and get quality time with someone close to you. You can use this time to plan future adventures together as well, such as them going to visit you, or a place you both could meet up in the middle. Maybe even make it an annual adventure.
8. Indulge Yourself
Birthdays are for indulging. You made it through another year. No matter how good or bad it was and what that year was full of, it is cause for celebration. Go to that expensive restaurant you never find an excuse to visit, or get all of your favorite desserts.
Most people have a guilty pleasure that they enjoy buying or an activity they enjoy doing but often find that they can’t afford to spend the money on it all the time. When your birthday rolls around, use it as an excuse.
Get the nice body scrub that makes your body feel like silk, or the fancy new golf clubs even though you have old ones that work just fine. You’ll feel better and get a guilty pleasure that you usually otherwise deny yourself.
While sharing is caring, it is up to you whether you indulge with others or keep your treat for yourself. Don’t let anyone guilt you into buying them things. This is a treat for you, after all.
9. Do Something From Your Childhood
Do you look back on your childhood birthdays with fondness? Maybe you miss the celebrations with a lot of people, the unique and fun cakes, or the games you used to play.
There’s no reason that you can’t relive those moments now that you are an adult. Go and buy a pinata and whack your heart out, or scour through second-hand shops for the old board games you used to play.
There’s no reason you can’t relive your childhood memories. The only thing stopping you is your potential embarrassment or taking the time to get everything together.
You’d be surprised what a day of acting like a child again can do for you. Whether you are 30 or 60, you can take the time to bring those memories back to life. Maybe you can use the time to remember someone that used to be at your birthday events and is no longer there as well, such as your parents, a sibling, or an old friend.
10. Start Something New
Have you been wanting to start a new hobby, but have never taken the step to actually get started? Use your birthday as an excuse. Go get a gym membership and buy nice gym clothes, get everything you will need to make a cute journal, buy a birdwatching book, or get the tabs you need to start annotating your books.
You can ask for the items you need for your birthday, or get them yourself if it is something spur of the moment. Like New Year’s, use your birthday as a sort of renewal and a chance to try new habits and hobbies you usually push to the side.
If you want to try something new but aren’t entirely sure what, there are loads of options. You can try dance classes, painting, games, fishing, martial arts, start a podcast, start writing a book, track your family genealogy, learn calligraphy, try your hand at cooking or baking, get a green thumb, or start learning about photography.