If you’re in charge of making sure the hen or stag do goes off without a hitch, tick off these 10 simple tips that’ll make life easier for everyone…
1. Spend time working out the guest list
It can be tricky to strike the right balance when there are different groups of friends and family involved, so you’ll need to work with the bride or groom to come up with a great guest list. It’s not uncommon for hens and stags to have two dos – one that’s mother-in-law friendly, and one that’s better suited to the go-hard-or-go-home brigade.
2. Choose your destination wisely
Once you’ve worked out who’s going, it’s all about where you’re going. According to a recent survey, Leeds is set to top the list of UK destinations for hens and stags in 2016, closely followed by Bristol and Newcastle. Further afield, the Hungarian city of Budapest will top the chart this year, with Prague and Krakow just behind.
3. Keep money in mind
Set a realistic budget from the start and stick to it so that people know what they’re looking at money-wise. But make sure that includes a bit of a buffer for food, drinks and little extras – this is a special treat, so you don’t want to be worrying about money while you’re there.
4. Get a date in early
The longer people have to book babysitters and annual leave – and to save up – the better, so once you’ve settled on a date make sure you get it out there as soon as possible. While it can help to suggest a few different options, sometimes it can cause more hassle than it’s worth and you’re better just to choose a date and go with it.
5. Try to introduce everyone before you go
Even if it’s just setting up a Facebook or WhatsApp group or starting a conversation on email, it’ll mean people will recognise names and faces before the party or trip itself.
6. Take care of the boring details
Planning really is key, so do your research about where to go and what to do well in advance. It’s good to involve other people in the planning stage, and it’ll take some of the pressure off you. Just remember to assign your most organised friend (or yourself) to the task of sharing – and saving – people’s contact details. Particularly if you’re in an unfamiliar city, you’ll want everybody’s mobile number.
7. Get a feel for what the stag or hen actually wants
Chances are, you already know if they’re a spa phobic or fanatic, but it’s worth getting an idea of their expectations. That way you can avoid any nasty surprises (but I’m allergic to massages) and make sure you’re on the right track.
8. Keep a few surprises up your sleeve
That said, you don’t want to lay everything on the table before you go. A big part of the fun is the element of surprise, and you’ll want to keep them guessing for some of it.
9. Don’t organise too much
Especially if you’re in a new city, you’re going to want some time just to explore. Plus, getting around with a huge group of people takes a lot longer than you think, so you don’t want to feel like you’re constantly rushing.
10. Enjoy it
Planning a group getaway can be hard work, but the extra effort at the planning stage is well worth it – that way you can sit back, relax, and watch things unfold once you’re there!