The month of December is almost synonymous with party, parties and more parties. For some of us, the year passed us too quickly and before you know it, it is already the end of the year! Some of us may not have the habit of planning year-end parties in advance, others might want to hold last minute parties in response to cancelled plans. Whichever is your reason for planning your party last minute, we have come up with a simple comprehensive checklist for you to help you cope with the flurry of last minute preparations.
Decide on the theme ASAP
As with all parties, it is important for you to decide on the theme of the party that you want ASAP. You might want to create a Pinterest board to visualise how you would like your party to be like. This would make it easier for you to plan the party faster and troubleshoot for possible problems, coming up with back up plans in the event of these issues happening.
Send out your calendar invites immediately
Once you are done with deciding on the theme, decide on the date of your party fast. It is better to leave at least 2 weeks’ minimum before the party for your guests to RSVP to. However, if it is really last minute, try your best to leave at least 1 week for your guests to respond to, sending them a google invite and texts concurrently to remind them to check their emails for the invite. As you send out google calendar invites, remember to schedule reminders for 2-3 days before the party, to remind your guests of the party.
Alternatively, you can also create an event on Facebook and invite friends to keep track of your party's attendance list. You can also post and receive updates on the event page. Doing this also leaves you some buffer time to respond should any of your guests have to pull out last minute because of various reasons.
Plan your food and beverages
For food catering, you would need to inform catering companies 2-3 weeks prior to your event. For parties planned last minute, this is often not an option. While you can still call restaurants to bulk order food, restaurants are usually very busy closer towards Christmas and year-end. Fret not, it is still possible to have yummy food for your party!
These are categories of food which you can easily prepare:
- Dips like hummus and guacamole to go with crackers.
- Different toppings like bruschetta to go with bread
- Food on skewers
- Nut mixes in bowls
- Meats/ cheese/ fruit platters
These are some fancy drink ideas which you can easily prepare on a budget:
- Big-batch punch
- Fruit infused water
When you are planning your menu, it is also important to have a vegan and gluten free option. This is respectful of friends with different dietary needs. It is essential for you to buy the ingredients at least 3 days in advance. This allows you some buffer time to get anything last minute if need be. Furthermore, you might also want to prepare or buy a lot of ice for the drinks too.
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Show your hospitality through the small touches
The devil is in the details – express your hospitality through small details which are usually overlooked. Plan your seating plan of the party such that it is conducive for interaction between guests. Also, you might want to note that more people would be using the toilet than usual. As such, it is advisable to prepare extra paper towels in your bathrooms and some feminine necessities should some female guests require them during your party.
Set a reminder to turn on your aircon
Set a reminder for yourself to turn on your aircon an hour before your guests visit. It is easier for your aircon to cool the room when there is less people. You might want to consider servicing your aircon units or perhaps have it go through a chemical wash before your party. Unknowingly, we tend to leave our aircon unit servicing till a longer time than recommended. By then, dust would have accumulated in our aircon units and might trigger allergic reactions.
You can keep your air conditioners in top shape by getting it serviced regularly. Available on iOS App Store and Google Play Store, Sendhelper is a platform where you can find a variety of home services including aircon services at your convenience and at an affordable rate.
Of course, the list is non-exhaustive. Having these points addressed would at the very least ensure that your party is well functioning. Furthermore, having the party planned out as such would give you more time to have fun during your party as opposed to panicking to get things you have missed out during the party. Remember to enjoy your party and happy holidays!