Parties and Occasions

Planning a hen party – some things to consider

If your friend or sister has chosen you to be her Maid of Honour or Chief Bridesmaid congratulations this is a huge honour.

One of your responsibilities will be planning the hen party and this is quite a task, as great hen parties don’t just happen they require careful planning and consideration.

What does the Bride to be want?

This is the most important consideration when planning a hen party.This is her party, send off, last night of freedom so you must respect her wishes. If she says no strippers she means no strippers. Although it is your job to organise the hen do for her unless she has explicitly given you carte blanche to do whatever you want you, should discuss the plans with her make sure she is comfortable with them. I have read many forums where the Brides to be is dreading her hen do, as she has no idea what has been planned for her, and some have even called off the hen party because they are not comfortable with what has been planned. The time leading up to a Wedding is stressful enough for the Bride to be  ans your role is to alleviate her stress not to add to it.

Talk to the Bride to Be

She may be your best friend or sister but are you sure you really know what she wants? I would suggest that the first step in planning a hen party should be to have a lengthy chat with the Bride to be to find out what she has in mind for her hen party and in particular if there is anything she is really adverse to. You will also need to know who she wants to attend her hen party, for example if she is planning to include her future Mother in law in the hen party celebrations then parading around town carrying a giant willy and wearing L plates may not be what she has in mind.

Work out your hen do, budget

You will also need to know how much money the girls are likely to have to spend on the hen party and whether it will be a daytime activity, a night out or a whole weekend of hen do celebrations. This can be a sensitive issue particularly at the moment with the country in recession so you need to ensure that no one is going to be financially embarrassed by the cost of the arrangements.

 Planning the date of the hen party

You need to plan a date for the hen party this should definitely not be the night before the wedding, at least a week before the wedding is ideal as it gives everyone a chance to recover before the big day, don’t have it too early though as there will be temptation do something else nearer the wedding and then the whole cost can get out of hand.

 Planning the hen party destination

Where will you hold the hen party, in your hometown or somewhere completely different, I would advise against holding you hen party too close to home for several reasons. Firstly it could be embarrassing to run into friends or colleagues who weren’t invited to the hen do. Secondly depending on your profession it could be embarrassing to run into people who know you professionally whilst you are out on your hen do. E.g. if you are a teacher do you want to run the risk of running into your students parents whilst you are on your hen do. Finally if this is her last night of freedom so to speak so why not make it an occasion to remember by going somewhere new and exciting, depending on your budget you may consider a European hen party destination such as Paris, Venice or Amsterdam, or staying in the UK you could try a town she has never been to before.

Planning the Activities

Once you have a date in mind, an idea of the numbers a budget and destination, you can start looking into activity ideas, baring in mind what the Bride to be said she did and did not want to do.

Here are some of the most popular hen party activity ideas to get you started.

Arts and Craft hen do activities: Cup cake decorating, Pottery class, glass blowing

Food and Drink hen party activities, such as cocktail making and cooking classes

Outdoor hen weekend activities: Glamping, A treasure hunt, motorised vehicles, horse riding, canoeing, white water rafting

Pampering hen ideas: spa days, makeovers

Performing hen activities: Pole dancing, belly dancing, Skating