On Thursday morning, I’ll be on a plane to New Orleans to celebrate my best friend’s bachelorette party. It’s pretty much all I can think about because I’m SO FREAKING EXCITED.
When Kaylin called me to tell me she wanted to have her bachelorette party in New Orleans and wanted me to plan it, two things came to my mind.
1. She thinks I’m her most fun friend. This might not be true but let me believe it, okay?
And 2. She trusts me to organize a lot of logistics and people. This is funny because I’ve never planned something like this before and I didn’t really trust me to do it right. But now that the itinerary is finalized, I’m so happy and maybe just a little proud of myself.
Here’s the timeline for how I got everything in order for an EPIC destination bachelorette party.
3 Months Out
Send out invitations. Yes, this is super early but for a destination trip where everyone needs to buy a flight, the more heads up, the better.
Get flight information from guests as they book. I added all flight information to a Google Drive spreadsheet.
2 Months Out
Book the hotel. Take a look at Google Maps and consider what part of town you want to be in. Vegas? I’d pick something near the center of the strip. In New Orleans, I chose a hotel near Bourbon street and close to all of the activities I had in mind.
Start booking activities. We arrive on Thursday, have full days on Friday and Saturday, and all fly out Sunday. I’ve focused the activities on Friday and Saturday. I found many of the activities by googling “New Orleans bachelorette party” and getting suggestions from friends. With a large enough group (we have 7 total) it’s actually cheaper to have a private tour and there are several activities that have group pricing for events like ours.
1 Month Out
Finalize itinerary and share with group. I sent out the itinerary of what I had booked to the group along with tentative costs. Everyone should be able to have a ballpark idea of what they expect to spend in New Orleans. Additionally, I reminded the group that all costs for Kaylin are being split amongst the group. The bride won’t be paying for anything once we get there, though she did pay for her flight.
Ask for feedback and ideas. Some people may have activities in mind that they’d really like to do. I did ask this with each email but rarely got response, so I asked about more specific ideas. I asked the group if they’d be interested in getting blow outs one day. The consensus seemed to be that it wasn’t necessary and they’d rather do something more “New Orleans”. I’m glad I asked, because I would have booked them.
3 Weeks Out
Meal Reservations. Most restaurants won’t allow you to make reservations more than a month out. With the help of Yelp and Val, I found a few places I knew we’d definitely want to eat.
Buy some goodies. Bachelorette sash? Check. Clip in veil? Check. Penis paraphernalia? Check.
Put together the hangover kits. I know we’ll be needing these so I’ve put together goodie bags for the ladies. I’ll have more on these later this week.
2 Weeks Out
Call hotel to confirm reservation. Ask for adjoining rooms. Our hotel would not allow me to request that until arrival but it was worth a shot. My flight gets in first so I will request this upon arrival.
Start planning your outfits. Oh come on, you knew this was going to be on here. In one of my emails I asked the ladies to pack a little black dress which we’ll all wear one night while the bride wears white.
1 Week Out
Discuss finances with the group. So far, I’ve covered the cost for the hotel and several activities. Each girl currently has a “balance” with me. We are utilizing an app called Travefy which has made things SO much easier. For all group expenses, it allows you to add the expense and who paid for it, along with who is responsible for sharing the costs. Throughout the trip, each girl will be able to look and see what their balance is with me. At the end of the trip we are going to settle up by using Venmo or by check. If you are concerned about the financial capability of anyone in the group (i.e. you’re worried you won’t get paid back), I’d send this email out earlier.
Make a cute itinerary to print out and give to each of the girls. The one I made matches the invitations I sent out *pats herself on the back*. I’ll also send it in photo form to everyone so we can reference it throughout the trip.
1 Day Out
Start a group text. If your group is like mine, we all know each other but don’t have each others contact info. I’ve gathered everyone’s cell phone numbers and will start a group text the day before so that we can keep each other up to date on flights and arrival, as well as make it easy to find someone to call if we get separated.
So that’s what we’ve got so far. Later this week I’ll be sharing the Bachelorette Hangover Kits and post-trip, I’ll share a full recap. I don’t want to ruin the surprise for the bride!
Have you planned a bachelorette party? Have I left anything off this list? Do tell!