While the b2b has her hands full with wedding planning arrangements, the job of organizing the hen party usually falls with the Chief bridesmaid / matron of honor. Most hen parties these days consist of more than the bog standard night out and it is now common place for hen parties to last a weekend or often up to a week!
There are many decisions to be made when planning a hen party. One of the first things to decide is when it will take place. It is advisable to ensure that the hen party takes place a fair amount of time before the wedding to ensure that any mishaps or even injuries which occurred may be long forgotten by the time the wedding day rolls around! Check for any clashes with other events which may rule out important people attending and you do not want the bride's sister left out because it coincides with her own wedding anniversary! If you are planning a hen party abroad it is also advisable to look at what the weather will be like at that time of year and also to plan how long you will be going for.
The next step is to think about numbers. An ideal number would be between 8 and 20. Anymore than that and it becomes a logistic nightmare! Think about who you will invite. This may depend on the activities you have planned. For example do you want to invite the hen's mother and future mother in law if the plan is to have a drunken, stripper filled weekend ?! It may be advisable in that case to hold another hen party which is more sedate and may appeal to all.
Where to go? UK, Europe or even further afield. Destinations such as New York are very popular for hen parties. Obviously there are a number of factors to consider here such as flight availability, times and cost as well as the cost once you are at your destination and what activities will be on offer.
What to do? It is important to consider what daytime activities are available. Do you want to incorporate any surprises for the hen such as a stripper, a makeover, a photography shoot? It is also worth thinking about whether there are a range of activities available that will suit everyone's tastes. And of course there is the all important budget to consider!
Accommodation. What sort of standard of accommodation do you require? Consider everyone's budget. If you are going to be out and about a lot of the time is it really necessary to spend a large amount of money on a 5 star hotel? You may want somewhere close to the amenities you will be using. Do you want a hotel or prefer a self catering or bed and breakfast option?
The big night. Where will you go for the hen night? Are there local amenities such as pubs / clubs? It may be worth researching the area and what is around and getting hold of a map. Also consider how the party will get there and back. Do you need to pre book mini bus / taxis? Will you go somewhere to eat? If so you will almost certainly need to book in advance particularly if there is a large group of you.
Take all of these tips into account and you'll be guaranteed a hen party to remember and one that everyone will enjoy!