An unforgettable last night out for the groom-to-be begins with thoughtful planning. Bachelor parties come in all shapes and sizes, from one big night out with his buddies to a weekend getaway that delivers plenty of fun. Customize the bachelor party to suit the groom’s tastes to ensure your event is a success. Thoughtful planning is essential to allow you to throw an epic bachelor party that the groom-to-be will remember for years to come.
Consider the Groom’s Interests
A bachelor party is more than just a night out with the guys. Instead, it’s a celebration of the groom’s upcoming nuptials, which makes it an especially notable event. As a result, you want to personalize the party so that it’s a reflection of everything the groom loves––from the food and drink to the location and entertainment. As a result, the first step in your planning requires you to sit down with the groom and get a feel for what he envisions for his bachelor party. When you’re chatting with him, consider collecting this information:
- Timing: Does he want the party to occur right before the wedding or a few weeks or months in advance?
- Guest list: Does he envision a big blowout with a large group or a more intimate celebration with close friends?
- Entertainment: Throw out a few ideas about what you have in mind to get some feedback. Be open to any ideas that the groom may have––remember, it’s his party.
- Length: Does the groom prefer a one-night event or a longer weekend celebration?
You don’t have to nail down all of the details during this initial conversation, but having the groom’s input from the start will help guide your planning. With his thoughts in mind, start to brainstorm some potential party ideas with your groom and his interest as your inspiration.
Check out these ideas for a bachelor party:
- Bar crawl through your city’s entertainment district
- Dinner and a night out at a concert
- Box seats at a local sporting event
- Boat rental for an afternoon of fishing on the water
- Hiking in a state or national park with a cabin rental
- Road trip in an RV
- Local craft brewery tour and tasting
- Group lessons for a new skill like surfing
- A day of golfing with buddies
- Pool party at a luxury hotel pool
- Escape room followed by dinner and drinks
Design Your Guest List
Creating a guest list also requires some input from the groom. If you’re in charge of the bachelor party, chances are you know the groom and his pals pretty well. Many of them are your friends, too. Unless the groom wants a super intimate celebration, you can expect to invite friends and family members from different walks of life. Your guest list may include the groom’s:
- Close friends, including childhood friends, roommates, or college buddies
- Future in-laws like the bride’s brother
- Colleagues, if they’re friends outside of work
When you’re working on the guest list with the groom, make sure you get all of the necessary contact information so that you can convey important party details. You may not know everyone who is being invited, so having their email address and phone number on hand is important so that you can let everyone connect.
Reach Out to Guests
Once your guest list is finalized, it’s time to start coordinating the details. Digital communication is best, especially with a big group. Start with an email to guests to share the basic details of the event. If your groom has settled on an activity, share that information. You might want to throw a few potential dates out there so you can find one where all or most guests can attend. If your groom wants a weekend getaway, discuss transportation and lodging arrangements at this time.
Planning tip: Don’t delay talking about dividing expenses like food, drink, and hotel costs. You may want to split the groom’s bill rather than foot it all yourself. Bring up these shared expenses during the early stages of your planning so that everyone is on the same page when it comes to costs.
Create a Detailed Itinerary
Now that your guests are on board, it’s time to dive into the details to create an epic bachelor party for the groom-to-be. Designing an itinerary requires quite a bit of planning, so you want to reserve plenty of time––weeks, if not a month or more––to devote to finalizing the details of the big night (or weekend) out. Consider these key factors when you’re planning the event.
Food and Drink
Whether you’re hitting the links for an afternoon of golf or checking out favorite bars at night, you and your guests will also need to eat. Consider dining an expected part of any bachelor party. The groom’s favorite local restaurant might be a good spot to dine. Or, check out local reviews to find a hotspot that serves up the groom’s favorite food.
Planning tip: If you have a large group, consider booking a private room for your dinner. This creates a more intimate atmosphere, as well as a dedicated staff to accommodate your larger group. Consider some family-style foods as well––for example, an hors d’oeuvres buffet allows guests to snack before they order individual meals.
Planning the entertainment will probably be the most time-consuming step of your party planning. Obviously, this step will be guided by your specific plans, but it may include some of the following tasks:
- Researching bars or breweries and designing a bar crawl plan
- Securing tickets for concerts or sporting events
- Booking reservations at golf courses or escape rooms
- Devising a hiking excursion or weekend road trip plan
Planning tip: When it comes to the entertainment, look for creative ways to make the bachelor party feel more than just an ordinary guys’ night out. Splurge and have guests contribute to a fund to reserve a VIP spot at a club. Upgrade to the best available seats for a concert or ball game. Consider guests’ budgets, of course, but try to make the most of this celebration with some special touches.
Simplify your bachelor party by coordinating transportation for your guests. The groom and his guests will likely be enjoying a few celebratory drinks during the event, and you want your guests to stay safe. Organized transportation gives your guests one less thing to worry about. Fortunately, several options exist. If you’re not traveling far from one spot to the next, consider lining up some ride sharing cars for your group. Opt for larger cars like SUVs so that you can fit more people in each car. If your party calls for more time in the car, consider a more luxurious option like a party bus or a limo. Let your itinerary and your guests’ budgets (and opinions) play a role in your transportation decision.
Your bachelor party lodging needs depend on the type of event you’re hosting. Obviously, if you’re hosting a local one-night affair, lodging isn’t essential. However, you might consider getting a block of hotel rooms at a local hotel just to extend the celebration and make the night special.
If you’re traveling out of town, on the other hand, lodging is a must. Look into larger rentals because they may cost less per person than individual hotel rooms. AirBNB and VRBO are good places to start, especially if you’re traveling to a popular tourist destination. Consider renting a home, condo, or cabin for your crowd to enjoy. If you plan on spending time celebrating in this rental, look for party-friendly features like a pool or hot tub, outdoor seating area, or grill. Like other elements of your party, consider your budget when choosing a rental.
Finalize Details With the Groom and His Guests
Your event is planned and lodging and transportation are booked. As the host, your duty now is to finalize the details with the groom and your guests. First, run these details past your groom to make sure he’s pleased with your plans. Be open to any adjustments to suit his preferences. Once the groom has signed off on the event, share details with guests via email. This email should be your most detailed communication and should include:
- Timing of the event, including what time you’ll meet, start time of an event like a concert or game, and times of any reservations
- Location, including where you’ll start, what spots you’ll visit, and where you’ll stay
- Transportation and lodging details
- Payment information for shared expenses (be sure to leave the groom off of these communications)
Give the groom-to-be an epic bachelor party he’ll never forget. With thoughtful planning and a touch of creativity, you’ll design a personalized event that the groom and his buddies will love.