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Ah, the bachelorette party. A night of dancing, debauchery, and drinking — that is, if that's the kind of night out you prefer! Many brides-to-be plan alternative hen nights, from concerts to burlesque classes. Whatever kind of evening you choose, it's important to know in advance who to invite, who pays for the festivities, and when it should occur. Luckily, our wedding etiquette experts have sounded off on all of these topics! Read on to get the lowdown on bachelorette party dos and don'ts.
Who pays for the bachelorette party?
The bachelorette party is one event where the hosts aren't necessarily expected to foot the bill for everyone. In fact, the hosts are often more "organizers" than traditional hosts; they take charge of getting a group of friends together for a night out. Typically, everyone chips in to cover the cost of the bride's food and any drinks, since she's the one being honored. Any arrangement you come up with for funding the evening is fine — just be sure that everyone knows what to expect before the night begins.
If the event is more of a classic party being hosted by one or a few people at a single venue, then the traditional rules of hosting apply: the hosts covers all of the costs, including food, drinks, decorations and any party favors.
See more: The 10 Biggest Wedding Etiquette Don'ts
Do I have to invite all of my female guests?
This gig's all about spending a night out with your bridesmaids and your close girlfriends. However, if you've got some crazy relatives or your grandmother's young at heart, by all means include them, too. One final tip: For both of these celebrations, don't include someone who's not guaranteed to get an invite to your wedding. Although you might know lots of people who are great fun at a party, if they aren't invited to the main event, leave them off these pre-party guest lists. After all, you wouldn't invite someone for cocktails and then tell them they can't stay for dinner, right?
Should it be held on the same day as the bachelor party?
If it works out to be easier, scheduling-wise, for everyone involved, then by all means, schedule the bachelorette and bachelor parties for the same day (or weekend). Scheduling the parties on the same weekend also means you won't have to give up two weekends because chances are you may need one of them to cross off a few tasks on your wedding "to do" list (it'll be crunch time, guaranteed!). And lastly, it also makes a lot of sense if most of your wedding party members will be traveling to the wedding from out of town; if that's the case, then schedule the (more low-key, of course) bachelor and bachelorette parties on Thursday night, followed by the rehearsal dinner on Friday night before the wedding on Saturday.