When Is The Best Time To Hold The Hen Party?

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It’s a tricky question that needs to be answered early on when planning a hen party; what is the best date to get all of your mates together for the celebration? There is a lot to consider when choosing a date, from the type of Hen Do you’re planning to availability of the guests. Although my area of expertise is Hen Party Games, I’ve had a lot of experience in planning other aspects of Hen Nights. Below I’ll give you a few pointers to guide you in the right direction.

One Month Before

It’s great to hold the Hen Do a month in advance if you’re planning an extravagant party abroad or even a Hen weekend away. These types of event require a fairly big commitment on the part of the guests and you won’t be asking people to give up two weekends in a row (with the wedding being the following Saturday for example).

  • PROS
  • There is absolutely no chance of the bridesmaids still suffering with the hangover from hell a month after the Hen Do, thus reducing the chance of them throwing up on the way down the aisle!
  • The bride is more likely to get a present at the Hen Do as well as the wedding!!!


  • CONS
  • Holding it so far in advance could mean that it feels detached from the actual event which could mean it’s less exciting; you can remedy this somewhat with a really well thought-through theme and some great hen party games (check out the rest of my blog for more info).
  • If people are travelling far for the wedding, they are less likely to attend the Hen Do on top of this.

One Week Before

This would nearly always be my preference because I don’t think it really has anything against it.

  • Again it’s far enough in advance to mean that you won’t feel too rough when cutting the cake.
  • One week before the big day is perfect if you are planning a big night but are staying locally.
  • It can also work if you want a weekend away with just a few of your closest friends.
  • It’s near enough to the actual event to feel that special buzz of anticipation.

The Night Before

Personally, this would never be my choice because it’s far too risky, but I suppose it does have a couple of advantages. I would only ever advise holding the Hen Do the night before if you are planning on a quiet civilised gathering with a few sophisticated hen party games thrown in (which in my experience can often be just as much fun) and not an all night marathon!
  • PROS
  • Everyone is likely to be in town to attend (if they are coming to the wedding the next day).
  • It will certainly feel exciting and in no way detached from the main event.
  • CONS
  • Will you be able to resist the temptation of staying up all night long? You might have the best night of your life followed by the wedding day from hell; bags under your eyes, a pounding head and the breath of Shrek!
  • It will feel less special in someways because you won’t be able to let your hair down; you might be feeling nervous and tense.
  • Everyone will want an early night so it could turn out to be slightly dull (if you are a party girl).

A Couple Of Other Things

Whenever you decide to hold the Hen Party, make sure that most people don’t have to work the next day to ensure the maximum turn-out.

Have fun, but don’t over-do it; even if you have the Hen Do a month in advance, you could still be hobbling down the aisle in a cast if you decide to crowd surf off the bar in the local pub!

That’s my take on the perfect timing for your Hen Party.

Now you need to get specific with the plans so check out my Tips For Planning A Fantastic Hen Night, The Checklist and a few of the Hen Party Games you could play at the Hen Do.

Happy Henning,

Gaynor x

About the author

Hiya. I’m Gaynor – Hen Party planner extraordinaire.

A few years ago my best mate Sally asked me to be her bridesmaid. With that came the responsibility of organising the Hen Do which was an exciting but slightly daunting prospect. I had a reputation as a bit of a party girl so the expectations were high. The challenge was the budget – there wasn’t one! But with a bit of improvisation and a lot of imagination I managed to pull it off.

The success of the night was mainly due to the unique and fun Hen Party Games I’d organised to get everyone interacting and laughing. On this site I’ll share some of the best ones I’ve discovered over the years.

Enjoy x

View all articles by Gaynor James

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