Some ladies might fantasize about an elaborate bachelorette trip modeled after the movie “The Hangover,” just without the hijinks. But bachelorette parties don’t have to break the bank to be fun, festive celebrations of friendship and the bride-to-be, of course. Here are some tips on planning a budget-friendly bachelorette party, including ideas for taking the show on the road.
Know Your Audience
If attendees or wedding party members are splitting the cost of the festivities, start the planning process by getting a good idea of what each person is willing to spend. Texting or Facebook messaging may seem like the obvious option, but the BrideBox Wedding Album blog suggests adopting an anonymous approach. Using something like Google Forms or SurveyMonkey will give friends the opportunity to be totally honest without fear of being viewed as a party pooper or cheapskate.
As the organizer, you can use the same survey to have people vote on different dates. You could also outline party possibilities within each budget bracket. If everyone is up for an outdoorsy adventure, renting a cabin could be a blast. Or maybe a sophisticated spa retreat is more their style. Getting a sense of what attendees and, most importantly, the bride to be, want to do early in the planning process can cut costs if you are able to book activities and accommodations well in advance of the big day. And don’t forget to consider transportation. Even if you plan to stay close to home, bachelorette bashes have been known to include a cocktail or two.
Start reaching out to restaurants, resorts, or Airbnb rentals on the wish list early to get the best dates and rates. And don’t be shy. Let the people you talk to know you’ll be celebrating a special occasion. Some spots offer group rates or discounts, and many people in the hospitality industry love lavishing perks on parties.
Send out invitations as soon as a date is set. Deciding on a date early will help attendees clear their calendars and take care of obligations that might keep them from coming to the party or distract them from the fun once they arrive. Along those lines, consider making arrangements for the bride. Find a dog sitter if she has a furry friend or help her handle any home security concerns. And pass the same suggestions on to the rest of the wedding party. For instance, if you have a security alarm, SmarterTravel recommends leaving the code and a house key with someone you trust while you’re away. As a bonus, the logistical legwork could help the bride to be prepared for her honeymoon, too.
Don’t Force People to Double Up on Gifts
Many bachelorette party attendees will be members of the wedding party. That means they’ll likely be shelling out some cash for an outfit and something near the top of the wedding registry. And etiquette dictates everyone invited to the bachelorette party should be invited to the wedding under most circumstances, so they’ll be giving gifts, too. Consider including bachelorette gift guidelines in the invitation that specifies no gifts or provides a budget-friendly theme for giving. Maybe everyone can pick up a paperback copy of their favorite romance novel to stock the bride’s beach bag with honeymoon-appropriate reading material or give her a not-so-sexy set of socks for those newlywed Netflix-and-chill nights.
No matter what you plan for the bachelorette bash, it shouldn’t stress your friendships or your finances. After all, the main event (oh, yeah—the wedding!) hasn’t even happened yet.
Guest blogged by Brittany Fisher