You’ve helped lick envelopes, showered the bride with gifts and listened to meltdowns; now it’s time for you both to have some fun with the perfect bachelorette party. We’ve got 12 tips for you to check off the list when planning the ultimate bachelorette party!

bachelorette party planning tips

1. Talk to the bride

The bride might be your bestie, but are you sure you have a complete grasp on her idea of the perfect bachelorette party? Even someone who is typically wild and crazy might be begging for a relaxing spa weekend instead. Ask the bride about the overall setting for the day without putting all the decision-making on her. Everyone likes to be surprised a little bit!

2. Keep the bride’s preferences top of mind

Whether it’s inviting someone you don’t like, skipping your favorite bar, or staying away from decorations of a certain variety [you know what we’re talking about…] you should respect the bride’s wishes. Stick to what you’re sure she’ll like, and everyone will enjoy the night that much more.

3. Be considerate of budget

Ask your guests how much they’re comfortable spending. You can avoid awkwardness by asking anonymously with free sites like this. Then you can realistically plan whether you’re staying local with a night of glamping or going all out on a weekend in Vegas. You can also create experiences at different price tiers, so everyone can feel included but also like they have options. For instance, maybe those with a tighter budget can skip the mani/pedis and join for drinks later. And remember to save up some of your own money for decorations!

4. Spread the word

Weekends book up quickly, especially in the summer. Send a simple save-the-date email or Facebook message 2 to 3 months in advance. Send a fun, more formal invite a few weeks before the party and include more details. Let your girls know what to expect, what to bring and if there is a dress code. You’re free to hunt down anyone who doesn’t RSV on time; you’ve got things to book!

5. Dress up

Make this party extra-special with fun dress-up opportunities. Whether its silly costumes, sashes or fancy dresses, make the Bachelorette an unforgettable experience. You’ll want it to feel different than other times you all hang out!

6. Break it down

If you’re asking people to spend money, they should know what it’s going toward. Break down the costs for transportation, food, hotel and anything else you expect to split. Be sure communicate the best way to split costs with you, too. Whether its cash or a quick-pay app, they should be prepared to pay you back. Sometimes the easiest way to do this is to keep tabs on the costs for everything and have everyone pay you back in bulk at the end. Or, if cash is tight, have everyone pay upfront for big costs before the event.

7. Be accommodating

Bachelorette parties can bring out a random mix of people. Entertaining family, coworkers, friends and roommates means that you’ll have a variety of people to please. Give everyone the option to come for certain parts of the party and make it convenient for them to leave. There’s no reason your pregnant friend should have to stay out until the bar closes (unless she’s the coolest mom-to-be ever and will be your DD). Every bridal party and group of people is different, so brainstorm some ways to make everyone feel comfortable. Ask them ahead of time if you aren’t sure!

8. Stock up

Ahh, the fun stuff! Get this party started with drinks and decor! Pull out all the drinks and mixers and play amateur bartender for the night. Make the bride feel special with a custom cocktail. Doll her up with bachelorette sashes, boas or a tiara if that’s her thing. If you’re hoping to throw in a few “naughty” touches (you know what we’re talking about), choose subtle additions like ice cube molds or confetti. You’ll want some “safe for work” pictures people can actually post!

9. Game time

They’re not everyone’s favorite activity, but a game or two can help keep the party going. Have guests tell their funniest memory with the bride or play a card game the gets everyone laughing. Games and little ice breakers should help everyone get to know each other a little more so the group is comfortable the rest of the evening.

10. Presents!

Your guests can get something small on their own or go in on something special for your bride’s first night as a newlywed. Get the bride’s sizes and offer to purchase the gift yourself. Something sexy is always a winner… You could even ask everyone to bring a pair of new panties and make the bride guess who they are from. That said, a spa day of pampering is just as great without crossing boundaries if family/co-workers are involved.

11. Don’t be “that girl”

You’re in charge of the show here. Don’t drink too much or get lost in conversation with the hot “man bun” guy across the bar. This night is all about the bride, and that goes for everyone. Make sure people aren’t drinking too much or getting out of line because nothing ends a party faster than a crying drunk girl.

12. Make it memorable

Rule of thumb: The bride has final say on what gets posted. Snap tons of group pictures and candids throughout the day. Tell your group to use a creative hashtag when sharing their pics. Tags that are personalized are all the better. Try using the bride’s last name like #SayByeToSmith or #SmithsLastFling, but get the okay from everyone before those late night pictures end up on everyone’s newsfeed.

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