1. Don’t plan your dream hen party
It is easy to think “if I were getting married, that’s exactly what I’d want”, but consider the bride. If matching T-shirts, L-plates and a pink hummer are her idea of hell, don’t make her go through it. After all, you want her to enjoy herself, not wish to escape from sheer embarrassment.
2. Don’t let too many cooks spoil the broth
If there are a number of bridesmaids, delegate jobs amongst yourselves. And if you’re the maid of honour, take control. You don’t need everyone’s input – some things will run much more smoothly without too many opinions.
3. Keep the hens in the loop
While the bride-to-be may enjoy a surprise, her friends will want to know what they’re in for, so they can prepare accordingly. And hen parties are expensive. If the hens are going to proffer their hard-earned cash, it’s only fair to give them an approximate breakdown of how the money will be spent. It’ll keep them happy to know that the funds are not being flittered away.
4. Don’t blind-side the bride
You can keep her in the dark to some extent, but don’t allow her to ruin her best trainers on a country walk, or go without a nice outfit for a night out. Ensure she’s packed for every eventuality. And no red herrings: don’t tell her to bring her passport and bikini if she’s going to Brighton; she’ll only be disappointed.
5. It’s not about glory seeking
This is not the chance to prove yourself as the ‘better’ friend. You may have put in far more effort than the others, or come up with the most successful part of the day, but keep quiet. You’re a team, and the last thing the bride-to-be wants is resentment brewing amongst her friends before her big day.
6. Don’t over cater
It’s easy to get carried away with the all-inclusive element, but while there’s nothing worse than running out of alcohol or food at a party, excessive over-catering is also a problem. Good practice is to cover the cost of drinks during the day and over dinner, but if you’re heading out to a club, buy a couple of bottles, then suggest your guests get their own beverages (warn them in advance of this arrangement). Bridesmaids can keep the hen’s glass topped up, but for those who can’t face another glass of prosecco – or those who don’t want to drink at all – the kitty won’t be wasted on unconsumed drinks. On a similar theme, there is such a thing as too many penis straws. Keep things in moderation and costs low, the brides’ friends will thank you for it when it’s one of many wedding celebrations that year.
7. There is such a thing as too much organised fun
While activities and games can provide entertainment and a bonding experience for those hens who may not know each other, don’t overfill the schedule. The hen – and her hens – will appreciate a little downtime.
8. Be well prepared
Particularly if you’re planning to go abroad. Make sure that the flights are affordable before you tell everyone where you’re off to, and get your tickets early and in bulk. You want to avoid one of the bride’s friends booking late and having to drop out because travel became too expensive.
9. Never embarrass the bride in front of her family
Bear in mind that your hen might not want to reveal too much or let loose entirely in front of her mother or future mother-in-law. If they’re attending, be sure to accommodate them.
10. Don’t resort to clichés
Just because you’re throwing a hen party, you don’t need to ask for the future Mr and Mrs’ favourite sexual position. She doesn’t want to tell you, and no one actually wants to know…
From: Harper’s BAZAAR UK