How To Plan A Bachelorette Party If You Don’t Want To Make Other People Spend Money
If you've been part of a wedding party before, you know that participating in your loved one's special day can come with some serious costs. But planning an affordable bachelorette party doesn't have to mean cutting out all of the fun parts of celebrating with the friends of the person getting married. There are plenty of very entertaining ways to have a pre-wedding celebration, according to experts.
Bachelorette parties don't have to be just about night life or clubs, Janessa White, a wedding planner and co-founder of Simply Eloped, tells Bustle. "They can be anything you want them to be; at any time." As long as the to-be-married person who the party is honoring is happy, it's sure to be a great celebration. Starting with the interests of the person getting married can be a great way to brainstorm low-cost options. For example, if they really love a good spa day, you don't have to all go drop hundreds of dollars at a fancy spa. Instead, plan something at someone's home, and ask everyone to bring some of their favorite face masks, lotions, and nail supplies. This will certainly be a more affordable — but still luxurious — way to de-stress, plus you might walk away with a new favorite product.
Here's how to plan a bachelorette party without making people spend money, according to experts.
1. Have A Pot Luck
There's nothing better than a good meal around a table with people you love. While traditionally you might go to an expensive restaurant during a bachelorette party, there are definitely more affordable ways to walk away with a full stomach. Throw a pot luck meal at someone's home and ask everyone to bring a dish, Katherine Frost, a luxury wedding planner and owner of A Frosted Affair, tells Bustle. This will not only reduce the hefty price tag that often comes with a formal restaurant meal, but will also make the celebration more personal. You'll all get to taste the favorite recipes of everyone in attendance.
2. Use A University's Event Space
If you live in a city and nobody is able or willing to host a pretty big party, you can still find good rates on an event space for the occasion. "Host the party in the banquet room of a local college or university," Frost says. Oftentimes, if the person getting married, a member of the bridal party, or one of the guests is an alum, they can either get the space for free or can get it for a majorly discounted cost. Plus, instead of asking guests to pay to participate in an expensive excursion, you can plan fun games to play and maybe even borrow a karaoke machine to really make it feel like a party.
3. Be Flexible
If you're planning a bachelorette party and are inviting guests from out of town, it might be necessary for them to pay for a hotel. But help save people money by also scheduling the wedding shower that weekend, so that folks only have to pay to travel once, Alexia Crossman, a wedding planner and owner of Wiley Events Co, tells Bustle. If nobody is able or willing to host some of the out-of-town guests during the weekend, resist the urge to ask everyone to stay together in a hotel. "Choose a local hotel, and make it optional, so that all guests don't feel the pressure to pay if they live in that city," she says.
4. Find Free Activities In Your City
No matter what city you live in, there are probably a number of free and fun activities for you and the rest of the bachelorette party to do. "You don't need to go all out with a trolley pub and table service," Crossman says. Maybe a local park hosts outdoor movie or concert events that are free for the community. Or you could load up on snacks and join a free walking tour of a part of the city you've never explored. Perhaps there is a botanical garden or state park nearby, which could be the perfect spot for an outdoor picnic.
5. Bring Your Own Alcohol
If you want to include alcohol in the bachelorette party celebrations but aren't super excited about asking guests to pay for overpriced drinks, bring the alcohol with you. "If you're wanting to party, but don't want the high-price tag associated with bar hopping, pick a destination where you can supply your own booze," Crossman says. "That could be a beach or lake where you can pack a cooler, or a city with open container laws." With a little bit of research ahead of time, you can figure out where, exactly, would be appropriate to bring some delicious drinks with you.
6. Skip The Cheesy Stuff
For some bachelorette parties, attendees are asked to chip in and help pay for matching sashes, robes, or other accessories for the night. While this can be fun to wear while out on the town, it's not necessarily super cost effective. "Skip the matching t-shirts, hats, and glassware," Crossman says. "It can get pricey for guests and to be honest, nobody wears that after the bachelorette anyways." Instead, if you want to do something fun to solidify the group, try offering fun temporary tattoos to wear that are in line with what the person getting married loves. Donning Harry Potter or Alice in Wonderland temporary tats can be super fun and affordable.
7. Look Into Group Packages
Sometimes the person getting married really wants the bachelorette party attendees to do an activity together that can't easily be duped or done for free. But that doesn't mean asking every guest to pay full cost. "Book an activity that can fit multiple people in a package instead of counting per head," Retno Dwinika, a wedding planner and co-founder of Amora Bali Weddings, tells Bustle. This will greatly reduce the amount that guests will need to pay to join in, plus it might make the activity affordable enough that the person getting married can pay for it themselves. Groupon can be your friend here for booking karaoke nights, cooking classes, rafting adventures, or some other fun adventure.
Whatever you decide to do to celebrate the special day, just do your best to be considerate. You might not be able to make the party absolutely free, but that's OK. Making swaps where you can and finding low-cost options can make a big difference that guests will be sure to appreciate.