So, maid-of-honor, you’ve been tasked with planning the bachelorette party to end all bachelorette parties…only the bride doesn’t want a huge night out or is leaning towards something more low-key. What’s a bridesmaid to do? Luckily, the options for alternative bachelorette parties are endless, and just as fun! Check out 10 of our favorites below to help you plan the perfect final bash before the wedding.
Have an old-fashioned slumber party
Grab your cutest PJs, microwaveable snacks and the biggest stack of movies you can find! For a bride who isn’t interested in a big night out, bring her the ultimate night in that will remind her of the Friday nights of childhood, but this time you don’t even have to ask for permission. Spend a laughter-filled night playing MASH and Truth or Dare and staging living room photoshoots, with the bride’s favorite movies from high school playing in the background. This is an excellent option for a bridal party made up of old high school friends to relive the glory days, or for friends made later in life who are making their first sleepover memories together.
Spend a weekend at the beach or in the mountains
Gather the bride’s best girls for an outdoorsy vacation along the coast or in the mountains. If the bride would prefer to rent out a beach house, spend your days by the ocean, on a rental boat or trying out the best of the local seafood. If she would prefer a cabin in the mountains, you can plan hikes, waterfall-side picnics, horseback rides and white water rafting. A perfect choice for an adventurous bride, a weekend away is an especially great bonding experience for bridesmaids who are meeting for the first time.
Plan a spa day
Maybe the bride-to-be isn’t into crazy weekend adventures or nights out. But especially with a wedding approaching, and the pressures of wedding planning mounting, any bride would jump at the opportunity to spend a day of manicures, pedicures, facials and massages with her best friends. Watch as the stress lifts off the bride’s shoulder with every relaxing moment spent during a bachelorette spa day…while also enjoying a bit of pampering yourself!
Explore a new city
What city (to which travel doesn’t cost an arm and a leg) has the bride always wanted to spend a weekend exploring? New York City? Chicago? Austin? San Francisco? Schedule a weekend getaway for the bridesmaids immersing yourselves in the sights, sounds and cuisine of a new city. To keep expenses in check, take a look at Airbnb to find an alternative to pricey hotel accommodations.
Go to a theme park
If the bride is into roller coasters and swirling until her head won’t stop spinning, a theme park bachelorette vacation might be the perfect alternative party for you. If you’re looking to go all out, a trip to California or Florida for a Disney park or Universal Studios is never a bad idea. Or if you are looking for something different, there are a wide variety of theme parks across the country to explore, from Dollywood in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains to one of the many Six Flags locations scattered across the country.
Plan a trip to see the bride’s favorite musical or musician
Is the bride a fan of musicals or music in general? Check out the tour schedules of her favorite singer, band or traveling stage production and schedule a dinner-and-a-show evening out. Joining in on something the bride-to-be loves to do is a wonderful way for her bridesmaids to show her how much they love her.
Learn a new skill
Whether it’s calligraphy, cooking, painting, dancing or even cocktail mixing there are so many new skills to learn, and a class in any of them is generally easy to find. Choose a course for the bride to take with her bridesmaids that will not only trigger the laughter but will also allow you all to walk away with a (slight) proficiency in a new area! Check out Groupon for options in your area!
Cheer on the bride’s team
If the bride-to-be is a mega sports fan, plan a trip to her old college town, or the location of her favorite professional sports team to cheer on her team. Borrow some of her team gear, or buy some of your own to wear for the event along with cute souvenirs she can keep after.
Pool party and backyard BBQ
Blow up the pool floaties and fire up the grill for the ideal summertime alternative bachelorette party! Spend the day poolside, playing bachelorette party games and eating delicious food with the bride squad. You can even add an extra layer of fun by adding slip and slides or water balloon fights. Bonus points if you manage to rent a bounce house!
For a bride who enjoys themed parties more than she likes to admit, plan a childhood throwback out on the town with 90s themed activities like glow in the dark mini golf, roller skating and laser tag. Dress up in your favorite baby doll dress, add some butterfly clips to your hair, and get ready to do the running man…A LOT. LOL.
So, even if the bride-to-be isn’t looking to celebrate with a standard bachelorette party, maids-of-honor everywhere can rest easy knowing that there are a ton of options that their BFF’s will LOVE.