How to Plan a Bachelorette Party
Bachelorette Party Overview
Bachelorette parties are more than just a party, they're also a rite of passage. It marks the transition for a woman from living a life of independence into a committed married life. In the past years, bachelorette parties have become more than just about drinking and having one last fling before the big day. It has become a celebration of friendship and of life.
Typically, the duty of planning the party falls upon the maid of honor and the bridesmaids and the bachelorette party traditionally occurs the weekend before and up to a couple months before the wedding.
The Planner's Checklist
Pre-planning: A month or two before the party
As you plan this fun pre-wedding bash, here are some of the things you need to keep in mind:
- The When. Book a day or weekend ahead of time with the bride to make sure the festivities will not clash with her schedule. Be sure to inform your guests with plenty of time regarding the date and particularly if the bash will take place out of town.
- The Where. Bachelorette parties can happen locally or they may also take place out of town. When planning the date(s), be sure to take travel time into consideration.
- The budget. The party is typically paid for by the bridal party, so be sure to plan out a budget ahead of time and take into account any unforeseen expenses.
- The Who. The guests typically include the bridal party and the bride's close female friends. Make sure that the people you invite to the party are also invited to the wedding.
Planning the Details: 4 to 6 weeks before the party
Make the bachelorette party special for your guest of honor by taking care of the important details. After all, this happens only once in her lifetime.
- Hotel and Travel – if you decided to go out of town for the party, then you need to take care of your travel. Reserve with your hotel and bus/ train/ airline tickets. If you're the one booking the tickets, be sure to collect all the money from the guests ahead of time and remember to ask for group discounts.
- Food – food will most likely consist of cocktails and finger food. If you're planning to hold the party in a restaurant, then remember to make a reservation with plenty of time and ask for a private room. If you're going away for the weekend, be sure to plan for breakfast and dinners together.
- Decorations – decorate the venue with something festive and that the bride will appreciate. Consider her favorite color, the wedding colors, and the mood of the night/ weekend. If you're hosting the event out of town, you could also decorate the bride's car with a personalized bachelorette party flag and hotel room with plenty of streamers, balloons, and banners.
- Entertainment – make sure to discuss the mood of the event with the bride ahead of time. Some brides prefer to do without male entertainment, but some brides would be insulted if the night was anything but crazy. If the night centers around having one last hurrah, then be sure to purchase plenty of the bride's preferred libations, and be sure to make her the center of attention with a personalized bachelorette sash and veil. If the bride would prefer something else, you could center the night around other activities such as heading to a casino, a spa, or having a beach party.
- Favors – your bachelorette party favors should fit the type of party you're having. Try some personalized lip balm, shoe bottle opener, bachelorette party mint tins, or personalized cocktail shakers.
Bachelorette Party Etiquette FAQs
Here are some commonly asked questions about a bachelorette party:
Who should host the party?
It is usually the maid of honor and bridal party who should host it. The bride is not supposed to host her own bachelorette party. However, you should consult her on the date, venue, and guest list.
Who should pay for the event?
The bride should never pay for the event because it is done in her honor. Traditionally the maid or matron of honor shoulders the cost, but she can ask the other bridesmaids to share with the financial cost. So you should make it affordable for the sake of those who will foot the bill.
Is it ok to hire a male stripper?
Try to determine first if the bride will be amenable to a male stripper during the party. You don't want to risk her or her groom-to-be getting upset before the wedding.
Who should be invited to the party?
Usually the bridal entourage is invited to the party. Close female friends of the bride and the groom who are not part of the entourage can also be invited. However, never invite someone who's not in the wedding guest list.