Whether you are the maid/matron-of-honor or the bride’s go-to party planning diva, you’re in charge of the bachelorette party and it is expected to be nothing short of epic. However, you’ve got to bring the fun with a not-so-epic budget. The bridesmaids already forked out cash on wedding attire and gifts, so they are looking to you to help out their exhausted wallets. Here are a few tips to plan a budget-friendly bachelorette party.
Set the Budget as a Group
What might seem to you like a reasonable amount to spend could be way too much for someone else, so make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to the budget. The first step before any sort of planning can begin is to have a collective, comprehensive conversation about the budget. Get a feel for how much each girl is willing (and able) to spend by using an anonymous survey site such as SurveyMonkey before you set your sights on a concrete idea. Keeping it anonymous ensures that no single person is called out as being the reason why you couldn’t get the life-sized disco ball complete with built-in sound system.
Once a price range has been agreed upon, create a spreadsheet that breaks down the bachelorette party into categories such as decorations, food, party favors, venue, transportation, and accommodations. Make sure each party guest is aware of how much they are responsible for contributing, and create a deadline for expenses to be paid. While this might sound a lot like collecting money for a school field trip, giving a timeline ensures that everything can be purchased or booked well in advance to avoid forced last minute changes.
Location, location, location
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with a low-key bash, the bride might prefer a destination bachelorette party, and this can get pricey if you don’t know the secrets. First, it is important that you recognize that “destination” doesn’t have to mean travelling across the globe. It could be mean renting a cozy cottage in the woods, spending a weekend in the mountains in a cabin getaway, or finding the perfect beach locale with nightlife to boot. The key is to travel during the shoulder season from February to October to save on domestic and international airfare. There isn’t a rule that says the bachelorette party has to happen right before the wedding either, so if money can be saved by having the party months in advance, go for it!
Save even more by taking cheaper transportation options such as a taxi or Uber to get from place to place, and start the party at home with appetizers and cocktails to save on food and alcohol if the trip won’t be all-inclusive. While you are away, you will be sure to post pictures and selfies of all the girls having fun, but remember that this lets those around you know that you are out of town. Make home security a top priority while you are away by letting a trusted neighbor or friend know that you will be out of town. Have them check up on your home periodically to ensure nothing is out of place, and don’t forget to leave them a number where you can be reached.
Focus on the Bride
The ultimate purpose of a bachelorette party is for the bride to have a fun night out with friends before her upcoming nuptials. Skip the add-ons and go for something meaningful. While matching shirts, robes, and jewelry with monograms are cute, is it really necessary? The bride would probably much rather prefer all the guests chip in on a registry gift. Keep the party favors and decorations simple, and DIY as much as you can to save money. While the glitter and huge pompoms were a nice added touch, is anyone going to remember that 10 years from now or will the highlight be the look on the bride’s face when she was presented with a scrapbook detailing the history of her friendship with each of you?
Planning a bachelorette party doesn’t have to be stressful or break the bank. Create a budget (and stick to it), choose a location with all the right amenities, and remember what’s important – the bride.
Guest Post by Amiee Lyons of DIY Darlin