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Blog > 11 Smart Tips For Organising A Hen Party

11 Smart Tips For Organising A Hen Party

Planning a hen do is a lot of work and can be pretty tricky but it can also be a lot of fun! If you want to go into this role well-armed with the right information, then check out our top tips for organising a hen party.

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girls celebrating tips for organising a hen party


Planning a hen do is a big responsibility and it can get stressful. However, with the right advice from the very beginning, you can ace the role and make sure the bride-to-be is given an unforgettable send-off before her big day.

Check out our top tips for organising a hen party before you start this journey, to make sure you’re well prepared.

Our Top Tips For Organising A Hen Party

1. Have a detailed conversation with the bride

Of all the tips for organising a hen party that we can give you, this one is the most important. If the role of planning the ‘do’ has fallen to you, then the first thing you have to do is speak with the bride.

Here are the things you want to have clear after you’ve spoken with her:

  • Would she like any aspect of the hen do to be a surprise?
    It’s important to ask this question first, as it’ll guide how you ask the rest of the questions.
  • Is there anything she 100% wants to rule out?
    This could be certain activities (e.g. strippers), locations (e.g. overseas), or guests (e.g. difficult cousin or even the mother-in-law) that she definitely wants to avoid.
  • Does she want to pay for herself or have others pay?
    Some brides want to pay for their spot on the hen do, while others will insist the group pays for them. Make sure you’re both clear on these expectations from the beginning.
  • How many days should the hen weekend to be?
    A single day or night out? Just overnight? Or maybe 2 nights?
  • What budget is she comfortable with?
    Though the bride rarely pays for her own trip, it’s best to get her thoughts on how expensive the trip should get. She might know factors about certain guests that might mean you should keep the budget lower, for example.
  • What type of destination would she like?
    At a minimum, find out if she’d like to stay within her own country or if she’s looking to travel abroad. Then maybe also check if she’d like somewhere sunny, somewhere snowy, a city or the country. Check out all of our hen destinations.
  • Would she like a particular theme?
    Is the bride a Harry Potter nerd or is she big into music festivals? It’s important to find out if she’d like the hen party to focus on a theme or if she’d like just a good time without a theme.

2. Setup a group chat

Throughout the hen do planning journey, you’ll need to be in touch with the group to give them updates and chat about the plans. The way you communicate with your group will depend on their ages and digital abilities.

The most common method to chat with your hen do group is to set up a WhatsApp group, Facebook Messenger group or even setting up a Facebook Event.

If your group contains members who don’t use those platforms or who don’t really use smartphones or computers (I’m looking at you, Gran), then you could resort to an email thread but, in our opinion, this gets messy very quickly. If you do have older ladies in the group, it might be better to set up a chat group on the platforms mentioned above and then keep the other ladies informed separately, offline.

3. Poll the group for the important choices

Once you’ve set up your hen party group chat, it’s time to introduce yourself to the group and start gathering the initial information you’ll need to plan the hen do.

You can use polling tools like Doodle, SurveyMonkey or Poll Maker to set up an online vote with pre-set options for the group to choose from.

Why use a polling tool?

If you ask an open-ended question in your WhatsApp or Facebook group, you’ll receive 50 different answers and no consensus. However, if you send people a poll to vote on with 3-6 options to choose from, then the answers you receive will be something you can actually act on.

What should you poll for?

Things you should poll for are:

  • Trip dates
  • Destinations
  • Budget range
  • Activity choices

4. Be sensitive about the budget

Hen parties have grown from the old-school night out on the town to multi-night weekend trips away with 15-30 girls, often overseas. It’s now more important than ever to touch base with the bride and the other members of the hen do group to make sure you know what the budget limitation is.

It’s a hard thing to ask individual people how much they’re able to spend. This is one of the reasons the polling tip above is so important – it’s anonymous and allows people to be honest about the money without being judged by the group.

A useful feature of our website is it allows anyone to opt out of any activities or dates they don’t want to take part in and just pay for what they want.

5. Communicate with the group about paying for the bride

Of all the tips for organising a hen party, this one has the potential to be really tense. We said you should chat with the bride before beginning the hen do planning about whether she wants to pay for herself or have others pay for her.

If the bride said she’d like the group to pay for her, then you will need to make sure everyone in the group is aware of this and can work it into their budget expectations.

6. At home or abroad?

Deciding whether to host the hen party at home or abroad comes down to factors we’ve already mentioned the bride’s preferences, the budget and the group polls. However, it’s also important to consider the following practical factors:

  • Time off work: Travelling overseas for the hen party usually involves a 2-night trip plus travel time, so it’s important to consider if group members would need to take time off work to join the trip.
  • Carry-on versus checked luggage: If you do plan to travel by air, you would usually have to pay extra to take checked luggage. So, it’s worth considering if all the group members are happy to keep their luggage small or if they’re willing to pay a bit more to pack all the fancy items that are almost a must on a hen party weekend.
  • Passports: Depending on where you’re travelling to and how you’re getting there, your group may need a valid passport to head away on the hen do.

7. Fun but appropriate activities

After you’ve chatted with the bride about her activity preferences (see tip number 1), you’ll need to make some decisions about which activities suit the type of trip you’re planning and which suit the members of your group.

For example, you probably won’t be choosing paintballing if the bride’s grandmother is taking part in the activity. Or you should choose an activity that comes to your accommodation if you’re staying in a hotel that doesn’t have a function room you can use. Also, choosing a nude model drawing class or stripogram might not be appropriate if the mother-in-law is part of the group.

You’re looking for activities that suit the bride’s personality and preference, that suit the members of the group and that make sense for the type of trip you’re planning.

8. Include some special touches

Almost anyone can plan a hen do but what we’re all aiming for is that unforgettable experience that the bride will cherish forever. One of our favourite tips for organising a hen party is to include those special touches and personalised experiences that the bride will remember.

The bride will also love it if you give her a thoughtful invite to her own hen party.

9. But keep it simple

Here are our top tips for organising a hen party in a way that keeps it simple and as stress-free as possible:

  • Book through a hen party planning company (like us): We liaise with the suppliers on your behalf, get everything booked in and handle all the tedious planning work.
  • Don’t pack your itinerary too full: Make sure you have enough time to get from one item to the next with a bit of time to spare.
  • Don’t forget to ask for help if you need it: If you’re planning this hen do on your own, remember that you should be able to reach out to the other bridal party members, the bride’s family or even the bride if you need advice, support or practical help. If you book through us, you’ll also have a dedicated Booking Agent who will support you through the process and do all the heavy lifting for you.

10. Have a backup plan

With so much upheaval in recent years around COVID-19 and travel, one of our cautious tips for organising a hen party is to always have a backup plan.

Maybe your flight gets cancelled. Maybe the accommodation falls through. Whatever the reason, it’s a smart idea to have a fallback idea for how to celebrate with the bride. Some of our favourite ideas are:

  • A kitchen tea at home: This is basically a fancy afternoon tea you host at home with cakes, sandwiches, bubbly and gifts for the bride that are focused on the kitchen or the home. It’s a simple and cheap option that’s easy to plan with only a few days notice if needed.
  • A special dinner in town: A dinner with her closest female family and friends in a fancy restaurant in town with some cocktails and laughs is a lovely way to celebrate with the bride before her wedding.

A festival of the bride in the backyard: If the bride loves music festivals and a bit of a boho vibe, then some music, games and even hired glamping tents in the backyard can make for a lovely hen do at home.

11. Finally, have an amazing time

After following these tips for organising a hen party that the bride will love, the most important thing now to do is enjoy the day. You deserve it! We know how tough the process can be, so pour yourself a glass and relax.

Image credits: Racool-studio, by Freepik

Need help with your Hen Party?

If you’re in hen research mode, check out all of our hen party destinations and hen party ideas.

For help booking your hen weekend or to discuss your ideas, chat with us live during office hours, submit a quick enquiry or contact us for any other queries.


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