So you’ve got a bachelor party coming up. But who is expected to pay and how do the financials typically work? Whether you’re the groom or a guest; either way you’re going to need to know. With my own party on the horizon, I decided to spend some time researching both tradition and etiquette to find out exactly how to approach this last hurrah.
So, who pays for the bachelor party? Local bachelor parties are typically paid for by the groomsmen, with the groom expected to pay very little, if anything. Any other guests will need to pay for themselves. The only real exception is when the party is taking place out of town and involves hotels and transportation. In this instance, the groomsmen are not expected to cover the expenses of the groom. Instead, the total expenses are shared and divided equally.
The bachelor party is a tradition that everyone undoubtedly look forward to. Except of course the groom!
Besides, its an opportunity for a group of guys to come together, celebrate and partake in activities that cannot usually be justified.
But as much as it is fun and games, it does take a great deal of organization, planning and scheduling.
And then there is the budgeting. This can get rather complex, especially if the bachelor party is large and lavish.
It comes as no surprise to hear that often, the pre-wedding festivities are more expensive than the wedding day itself.
Let us now take a closer look at the numbers and how much a bachelor party typically costs per person.
We will also be looking at those other important aspects, such as how long the average party is, if gifts are required etc.
So, be sure to keep reading if you have a bachelor party coming up and want to set your expectations accordingly.
How Much Should A Bachelor Party Cost Per Person?
A bachelor party can be quite pricey and very often more expensive than the wedding ceremony and the reception together.
The price becomes even hire if the groomsmen decide to organise it out of town and hotels and road fairs have to be paid for.
Let’s make a deeper analysis of how much a bachelor party costs per person:
Overall, it typically costs between $250-$1,250 per person to attend a bachelor party. This is is an average price, though, and it quite often exceeds $1,500 per person in many cases.
The price depends on several factors including the length, the location, the choice of events and the catering.
A one-day bachelor party for instance can cost as little as $250 per person, if it is held locally for the attendees and does not involve too many activities and services to pay for.
However, the most common length of a bachelor party is up to 3 days, which in the lowest cases costs between $575 and $775 per person.
If anyone has to fly to the destination (which would add a further day to the event for them) its likely to cost $1,000 and above.
If the party is 5 days or longer, the average price starts from $1,500.
The cheapest way to do a bachelor party is to organize a local dinner and drinks.
This will take only one night and require a lot less money, typically, if no other activities are planned.
But consider the reputation of the restaurant too.
Its not black and white. You could easily go to a fancy restaurant and easily pay upwards of $500 per person if the drinks are flowing.
This is why, many people, prefer to look into other options. It may very well be the case that for a simple dinner you could get away or do a lot more for your money.
For instance, clubbing, bar crawls and sports activities are commonly planned, and it is this kind of organization that can make a bachelor party take up to 3 to 5 days. Costs can quickly reach $1,000-$1,200 per person.
Out of town activities will without doubt raise the price. Travelling including flights and accommodation is likely to cost in the vicinity of $1,500 per person.
Does The Groom Pay For Anything At The Bachelor Party?
Traditionally, the groom does not pay for anything at his own bachelor party. All expenses and organization is handled by the groomsmen, led by the Best Man.
However, the groom may want to, or may even contribute to the bachelor party in certain contexts.
It is ultimately up to him; and many grooms do feel the need to pay their way and put money towards the activities.
Either way, it is important that the financial details are planned and openly communicated in advance. This way, everyone knows where they stand and can set the expectation and budgets accordingly.
The most important details to run through are:
It is the Best Man who usually decides upon where the bachelor party is to be held, considering the interests of the groom. However, they will likely liaise with the groomsmen and ask for advice and opinions throughout the process.
It is then up to the Best Man and groomsmen to split the costs, and make the payments as and when required.
Since weddings are planned at least a year ahead, it comes advised that if you expect to be a groomsmen or attend the bachelor party as a guest; you should start saving at the earliest opportunity.
Does The Best Man Pay For Anything?
The Best Man is expected to contribute to the bachelor party, just as they would do if they were a regular groomsman.
However, the main difference being that they take the lead, and are in charge of most of the organizational and logistical details.
The Best Man typically has the final say of where the bachelor party is to be held, and will need to be available and a point of contact throughout the process.
The duties of the Best Man can be summarized like this:
- The groom’s best friend
- Knows the groom well and his preferences (what he would like and would not like)
- Leader of the groomsmen
- Organizes all logistical details
- Directs the groomsmen on what to do and when
- Pays his share of the costs
Aside from the bachelor party, the Best Man also:
- Provides moral support during the ring selection.
- Shops for the formal wear (his own and the groomsmen’s) and coordinates the purchases.
- Serves as a counsellor and confidant.
- Helps the guests at the ceremony and the wedding reception.
- Stands next to the groom at the ceremony.
- Signs the marriage license as a witness.
- Poses for pictures.
How Long Is The Average Bachelor Party?
The average bachelor party for your typical wedding lasts between 1 and 2 days. Although, a bachelor party can last from one evening to 5-7 days.
It ultimately depends on what is decided by the Best Man and the groomsmen, taking into account various factors including the grooms expected preferences.
So, it could very well be decided that a bachelor party is a simple dinner with drinks and no additional activities. In this instance, it may well be just one day.
This is the cost effective and shortest option (depending on the type of restaurant and the number of guests).
If any activities are involved like sport events or pub crawls, then the party will typically lasts about 2 days.
If you are wondering what to do, here are a couple of more unusual ideas:
- Go hunting
- Play poker
- Take a road trip
- Take a brewery tour
If your budget and time allows it. You could also consider some activities that will require more time.
This could be a cruise, the renting of a beach house or the renting of a cabin in the woods. You could easily spend 3-4 nights or more doing this. But, each guest will need to prepare at least $1,000 to begin with.
The rent itself is one thing but consider expenses for food and drinks and any other activities you may do there, such as sports or clubbing.
Do You Bring Gifts To A Bachelor Party?
It is not mandatory to bring gifts to a bachelors party, especially if the groomsmen will be paying for all expenses and the event is a gift in itself.
Of course, the question of whether or not gifts are to be provided can be discussed. All groomsmen can agree between themselves, if they do want to bring gifts for the groom at the party.
Although not compulsory, gifts are always nice and welcome.
The groomsmen can also buy one big gift as a present from all of them to the groom.
Here are some interesting ideas (and funny one that won’t cost a fortune):
- Marriage survival kit
- Marriage coupons
- Gift card to his favorite pub
- Funny T-shirt
- Inflatable beer pong table
More classy and elegant options could be:
- Pocket watch
- Cuff links
- High-end tie
- Shaving kit
- Bottle of aged whiskey
- Leather wallet or gloves
Either way, always consult with the Best Man – he usually knows the groom best!
In general, you need to anticipate and prepare quite a bit of money if you are planning to attend a bachelor party.
Even if the bachelor party is held locally and for one evening, it is likely to be quite be an expensive one. Besides, we all want the groom to have a great time and expenses can soon add up.
This is especially true if alcohol and tabs are involved!
Whom ultimately is responsible for picking up the bill will depend.
While the groomsmen traditionally cover the groom; if its an out of town, expensive and multiple day event; its only right that the groom does contribute.
And he likely will want to anyway.
Generally speaking, the cheapest to most expensive bachelor parties are as follows:
- One night dinner and drinks – expect around $500 per person.
- 3-5 days of activities – expect around $1,000-$1,200 per person.
- Out of town activities with travel and accommodation – expect around $1,500 per person.
Taking the above in mind, and factoring in that the average bachelor party length is three days, the average price you can expect is between $250-$1,250 per person to attend a bachelor party.
While this is definitely not cheap and will require saving and budgeting, you should do your best to enjoy it and not let the financial stress get the better of you.
Besides, you are doing it for the groom. Its his big moment after all.