Whether you’re in charge of planning a bachelor or bachelorette party for someone you love, or you’re trying to plan your own, one thing stays true: costs pile on quickly.
It’s hard to decide what to splurge on and where to save when you’re planning something that’s supposed to be a wild party that only happens once in a lifetime. The truth is you don’t have to spend money to have a good time, or to ensure it’s memorable. There are lots of affordable options that will keep guests entertained.
1. Start Planning as Early as You Can
A lot of the time, extra costs come from last minute purchases and reservations. Try to plan out as much as you can at least three months in advance and pre-pay for activities. This way, you’ll have a clear itinerary for your guests, and you’ll be able to check if everyone attending is comfortable with splitting the exact cost long before the night of the party.
2. Stay Local
Paying for travel and hotel costs for your party can add hundreds of dollars onto the price tag. You can immediately save money by keeping it somewhere that’s close to you and only planning it for one night, rather than making a whole weekend out of it. You can even make it within driving distance and split the cost of a party bus between attendees, which will still probably be cheaper than getting a plane ticket and a hotel for the night, but add a celebratory flair.
3. If You Do Travel, Look for Bundles
Traveling for the big party doesn’t have to be out of the question. Sites like Expedia, Priceline and Travelocity offer bundle pricing that can score you huge savings. These often combine car rental, airfare, and hotel stays that give you a percentage off what all of these costs would be separately. There might even be group discounts that you can extend to the rest of the party to make the cost even lower.
4. Or, Consider Splitting a House
Another way to help cut costs for all attendees is looking into Airbnb or VRBO to see what homes are available for all of you to stay in. Split between guests, this can often cost less than a hotel, plus you can plan to spend a lot of time at the house and cut down on cover charges and group fees at restaurants and bars. This also helps to keep the cost of food and drinks lower, as you can buy them from the store and bring them back to the house, rather than going out.
5. Travel During the Offseason
Try to avoid going to a destination at the height of its tourist season. Hotels and plane tickets will be at an all-time high. Instead, try to plan for a time where there will be less travelers. Even better, aim for a weekday trip, rather than cramming everything in over the weekend. This also ensures there will be less crowds for your trip, so the focus can be on your bachelor or bachelorette.
6. Look for Free Activities
If you live near a beach, take advantage of the sun and sand and plan for some of the day to be spent laying out. There’s no admission fee and people can even bring whatever they like to drink to keep the total cost of food and drink lower. There also might be cool festivals or other free events that you can go to as a group without having to pay a huge group cost.
7. Look on Groupon for Deals
Groupon often offers deep discounts on local activities that can save you a lot, and help the party stay affordable for guests. Discounted activities include outings like bowling, go-karting, paintball, and going to local amusement parks. You can also snag deals for local restaurants and bars that often come out to 50% off the original price.
8. For Games and Decorations, Look for Free Online Content
The decorations and games are all part of the package when it comes to bachelor and bachelorette parties, and you can find a lot of that for free online. You can check Pinterest for free decorations and games that you can print out and have on hand for guests. If you’re particularly crafty, you can make the games and decorations yourself, making it even more personal to the event.
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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 8 Huge Ways To Save on a Bachelor or Bachelorette Party