As wedding season quickly approaches, you may be feeling nervous about your looming bridesmaid or guest expenses. Between dresses, shoes, gifts and pre-wedding events, the total cost adds up quickly. With the rising popularity of destination bachelorette parties, there are even more expenses to consider. We've put together a few tips so you can throw a budget-friendly bachelorette party without taking anything away from the celebration.
1. Be Savvy When Booking Travel
Don't wait until the last minute to book flights, trains or rental cars. Purchase your tickets far in advance to ensure the best rates. If you are a large group, talk to the hotel about group bookings or look into renting a more affordable house. When choosing hotels and flights, consider joining loyalty rewards programs so that you earn points from the bachelorette party to put toward your next vacation. Organize carpools for getting to and from the airports or your final destination -- everyone will appreciate cutting down on their cab fares.
2. Plan a Wallet Friendly Daytime Activity
A fun afternoon activity is the perfect time to spend quality time with the girls without breaking the bank. Plan an affordable outing you know the bride will love. For an outdoorsy bride, pack a picnic for the park, or go for a group hike or bike ride. If you traveled someplace warm, spend the day lounging by the hotel pool or on the beach. If you are stuck inside on a rainy day, make some popcorn and watch all of the bride's favorite chick flicks. Need more bachelorette party ideas? Head to the Activities section on The Bach.
3. Kick-Off the Evening Festivities at Home
Host a pre-game at the home of one of the bridal party members or in your hotel room. Everyone will appreciate cutting down the bachelorette party costs by having a drink or two without paying inflated bar prices. To make the pre-game feel special, create a signature cocktail based on the bride's drink of choice or pop some bubbly. A pre-game at home also provides the perfect opportunity to play some fun bachelorette party games or give the bride lingerie for her honeymoon.
4. Use Your Negotiation Skills
Don't be afraid to ask for group discounts. Request set dinner menus at restaurants to ensure that the meal stays within everyone's planned budget. Bars and clubs are also typically willing to waive cover charges or give out a free round of drinks for bachelorette parties. Both restaurants and bars frequently offer open bar options for large groups, which can help you keep the total drink bill in check. Concert halls, sports arenas and spas also routinely offer discounts for large groups.
5. Scale Back When Appropriate
If your group cannot afford the bride's dream girls' getaway, it's time to get creative. First, figure out what is most important to the bride and then recreate it with a similar yet more affordable option. Instead of indulgent spa treatments, opt for manicures or blowouts, which will have everyone looking and feeling great for less money. If the bride wants to lay in the sun with the girls, look for lake or beach destinations within driving distance rather than booking flights to a remote location. Book a limo to take your group wine tasting at a local vineyard instead of traveling to a distant wine region.