There is no perfect way to plan a party – but this Party Planning Checklist might take some of the pressure off!
What to think about first
- Create a party folder. (Put all of your ideas and research in here)
- Determine the type of party (casual, formal, themed, elegant etc.)
- Set a date and time
- Check with key friends and family if the date selected is suitable.
- Determine an affordable budget.
- Make a guest list – Remember to consider your budget.
- Choose your location and make a booking and obtain public permit if required (at home, a venue or public arena)
- Decide if you want finger foods, buffet, feasting station, sit down dining, BBQ or other. Don’t forget the cake if required.
- Determine what beverages you will supple and will you require glassware hire, ice tubs and ice.
- Will you require staff to assist with set up, food and beverage service + clean up.
- Work with the caterer to ensure your menu suits your needs, budget, and taste and suits the theme of the party and its location.
- Before finalising your caterer ensure that they are Gold License accredited and offer a guarantee of their services and products.
- When you are confident that you have the caterer that best suits your party, pay a deposit and lock in the date.
- Book entertainment – DJ, Band, magician, Palm Readers etc.
- Book hire – Glassware, Tables, Chairs, Heaters, Linen (Remember, your caterer can probably save you money by booking this through them)
- Consider decorations, flowers and theming (once again, your caterer may also manage events and assist you with this)
- Determine a RSVP date. This date should be approx. 2 weeks prior to the event.
- Organise your invitations and include a map if the location is tricky. Make the RSVP date a week before you actually require it.
- Contact any friends or family that you want to help with the party.
- Contingency Plan – If outdoors, have a plan B for inclement weather.
One or Two Weeks Before
· Confirm all your contractors e.g. – Caterer, entertainment, hire etc.
· Work out your outfit for the party. You will have no time on the day to think about this.
· Finalise the space and any decorations you may need to purchase.
· Go shopping for all your small items like candles, extra toilet paper, Thankyou Cards etc.
· Finalise your music if you are not hiring a DJ etc.
· Follow up the guests who are yet to RSVP.
· Let your caterer know final numbers and make your final payment.
· Purchase your beverages if your caterer is not supplying them.
A few Days Prior
· Clean the house so that on the day you just need to spot clean. Don’t forget to do the outside.
· Charge your camera and video recorder.
· Make room in the fridge for the caterer.
· Think about if you wish to make a speech.
· Organise any late night snacks, coffee etc. for those that party into the wee hours.
The day before
· Spot Clean.’
· Determine an area for any smokers and don’t forget the ashtrays.
· Clearly sign the bathrooms and stock them with toilet paper.
· Make sure you have taxi service numbers on hand.
· Begin decorating and setting up if possible
The big Day!
· Spot clean one last time.
· Pick up ice.
· Ensure your kitchen bin is empty.
· Finalise last of decorations and set up.
· Relax and Enjoy yourself!
A day or two after
· Send Thank you notes.
· Create a photo album dedicated to that day.
· Email some photos to guests and relatives.
· Return any borrowed or hired party supplies.