Step by step instructions for throwing a successful bachelorette party

Where Should You Start?

Here’s an idea. Let’s throw a bunch of women together who may or may not know one another, celebrate the bride’s final night of freedom, make sure everyone (especially the guest of honor) has an amazing time and no one gets stuck with a $400 bar tab at the end of the night. Sounds easy enough, right? No pressure on the MOH (wink wink).

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The bachelorette party is a mix of stress and fun for most groups. In the last decade, parties have become more extravagant, pricey and let’s face it…the bar has been set pretty high, especially with celebs jetting off to Cabo for multi-day destination bachelorette parties. Taking all the logistical, emotional and financial considerations into account, we have compiled some planning tips, to serve as a guide.



 

  • Determine what kind of bachelorette party expectations the bride has: Disappointing the bride on her bachelorette party can quickly dissolve years of friendship. Even if the bachelorette party is a surprise, the MOH (or whoever is planning) should have a conversation with the bride about what she likes, dislikes and downright hates. If the bride is a Martha Steward loving, classy, “expensive-taste” sort of gal, she may really be offended by a sex toy party. Maybe not…but you have to ask in order to establish guidelines. Our “What kind of bachelorette party should you have” quiz is a short, fun quiz to help determine what type of party a bride should have.
  • Make a contact list: This is vital in staying organized. Make a spreadsheet or list that includes the name, email and cell phone number for all attending. This makes it easier when sending out ideas, confirming plans and communicating details.
  • Establish a budget: Whether the bride is a bridezilla and wants a $10k bachelorette party, or she is totally easy-going and is says she doesn’t care. SET A BUDGET. Why? Not every lady is in the same financial situation. For some, money is no problem while others may have to save in advance. The MOH or main bachelorette party planner should email or call each individual personally to ask what the most is they can spend on the party. We don’t recommend doing this in a public forum, since money can be a touchy subject. Simply emailing and saying, “ what is the most you are comfortable spending on so and so’s bachelorette party” ensures you have some fixed numbers to work with. Then, look at all the maximum spend numbers and reduce the lowest number by 15%. For example, if you have 4 attendees (not including the bride) who say they can spend the following:
      • Guest 1: maximum spend = $350
      • Guest 2 maximum spend = $200
      • Guest 3 maximum spend = $110
      • Guest 4 maximum spend = $175

Reduce the lowest amount (guest 3 in this case) by 15% and you have your per person budget. In this example, the per person budget is $93.50. Then, you need to figure in the bride who should not pay for anything. Take the total amount your group is working with (in this example $93.50 x 4 = $374), and divide it by the total number of guests including the bride. So, take $374 divided by 5, and you get $74.80 per person. That is the number you use when planning activities, dinner, drinks, etc. Using this method ensures there are no hard feelings, and no one feels pressured into spending more than they an afford. For those that are willing to spend a little more on the bachelorette party, feel free to offer to purchase some favors, or even buy a round of drinks if you feel so inclined.

  • The bride should not pay for her bachelorette party: Yes, you heard that correctly. There will be brides who want to contribute, and that is fine. However, the rule of thumb is that she should not pay for anything.

Good luck and may the bachelorette party planning force be with you!


 

Overwhelmed at the thought of planning a bachelorette party? The BASH team is here to help. Email us at info at bashelorette dot com for recommendations, or to have us plan the whole party (available in select cities, fee may apply).

 

About the author

Courtney Smith is the Founder of BASHelorette, a website dedicated to making planning bachelorette parties, girlfriend getaways and girl's night out easier and more fun. She is also owner of CS Creative Suite, a marketing company specializing in hospitality marketing for bed and breakfasts, restaurants and spas. You can find her on Google+ and Twitter. Over the past decade, Courtney has planned countless bachelorette parties, attended as many concerts as possible and ingested copious amounts of coffee.

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