Whether you are the bridesmaid planning a surprise weekend away, or the bride-to-be trying to organise a big girls' night out, the list of
ideas is endless.
A hen night is all about having fun and for that reason, they don't all have to be a night out on the town. Brides want a night that reflects their personality, and that everyone is going to enjoy, whether it is the party loving bridesmaid or the groom's mum.
That's not to say the big night out has lost its appeal - quite the opposite in fact. But what more people are choosing to do is combine it with something else. Many people are choosing weekends away in another British city. This can keep the cost as low as you need, or as high as you want. To have a wild time on a budget, just choose your city, book train tickets well in advance and book yourselves into a cheap chain hotel, or even a local B&B. (If it's the latter, you may want to warn the owners you are a hen party.) If the sky's the limit, you can go to town. Perhaps book flights for everyone or hire a limo to get there, complete with champagne. Find a swish hotel with a spa where your group will be able to laze away the afternoons. Just don't forget, a hen weekend on a budget can be as memorable as any - it's all about what you make it.
While you're away, you can pick and choose activities to suit your group. A weekend in Birmingham may seem like a waste to some without a visit to Cadbury World, but if you are not big chocolate lovers, you may wish to spend time in the Sea Life Centre or just sitting and enjoying a drink in Brindley Place. Likewise, the London Eye is unmissable for some groups, but if the bride-to-be has a fear of heights - perhaps not such a good idea. Try Vinopolis, the world of wine on the South Bank instead. British cities have an amazing array of attractions to draw in groups, and most of them have amazing nightlife too. Cardiff, Edinburgh, Brighton and Manchester can all offer a jam packed weekend or a couple of days of total relaxation.
And that's something else to remember when planning a hen night, day or weekend. Why should the boys get all the fun? They have been going karting and white-water rafting on stag do's for years, now it's the girls' turn! More companies are turning to hen parties to find their customers, with lots offering incentives. A weekend away truly can offer everything, if outdoor pursuits are organised for the first day, such as Go Karting or Quad Biking, with a pamper day for the second. Just pay attention to a few golden rules to ensure your hen night is the best ever: find out everyone's maximum budget before you start planning, ask for deposits for people before you book anything, and most importantly, don't think there is such a thing as a 'normal' hen night. It is the bride-to-be's night, and can be whatever she wants it to be.