Are you getting married in 2022 and looking to plan an epic bachelorette weekend? Is your best friend marrying the love of her life and you want to make sure her final fling before the ring is unforgettable? One of the most popular reasons to book a boat charter on GetMyBoat is for bachelorette parties, and we read tons of reviews from bachelorette groups stating that their boat day was the highlight of the weekend.
Don’t miss your chance to celebrate with your favorite group of ladies on the water - we’ve put together this comprehensive guide on everything you need to know about planning a bachelorette boat party.
First things first, you’ll want to get a headcount of how many guests are attending. Planning a bachelorette party is no easy task - but once you know the number of people who are coming, you’ll be able to find an appropriate-sized vessel to host everyone.
Pontoons are a great option for bachelorette boat parties. A pontoon charter is more budget-friendly than a yacht, and they offer a lot of seating and space to spread out onboard. Yachts can accommodate anywhere from 6 to over 30 people, depending on the level of extravagance required by the party. They will also vary significantly in terms of amenities - some yachts are very simple and will be more affordable than a yacht that is decked out with a top sound system, kitchen, or even a hot tub. Read all the specs of the boat and don’t hesitate to ask the captain or owner clarifying questions before you book!
One of the best parts of planning a bachelorette party is coming up with a theme! Make sure you consult with the bride, get creative, and incorporate things that the bride loves. You can coordinate with your boat captain about decorating the boat before the bride-to-be arrives!
Bachelorette Party Theme Ideas:
Sail Before the Veil
Something Blue Theme
Color Scheme Themed Bachelorette Party - Incorporate the bride's favorite colors
These are just a few ideas - the possibilities are endless! You also don't "need" a theme - but it can be a really fun way to get everyone "onboard" for the boat party day!
Having a thorough packing list before your boat day is essential - once you’re on the water, there (usually) aren’t any stores you can easily access if you forget something! Here are the top items you won’t want to forget before you ship off from the docks.
One of the most stressful aspects of planning a group vacation or experience is figuring out the cost. It’s important to respect everyone’s budget when planning a bachelorette trip, so getting an estimate of the individual costs before you book is a great idea to ensure everyone is on the same page and there is no “sticker shock” once you send out the Venmo requests.
When you’re making your booking inquiry, ask the captain about all fees and read the description carefully on the boat listing. Some captains and owners include the fuel and captain’s fees within the displayed hourly cost of the boat charter, while others may itemize it separately. You can also ask about what is included in the charter, as many will provide some special extras like a bottle of champagne, an iced cooler, floaties, and more, which may help eliminate some spending on your end. You can also inquire if the owner offers any special pricing during weekdays or other promotions the captain might be running, which could help your group save a little money off the cost of the charter.
Pricing will vary significantly depending on all these factors mentioned. However, you can typically count on a boat charter costing about $100-200/hour for a captained pontoon or yacht, while larger, more expensive vessels will run you closer to $300/hour with a captain. This price will also vary depending on the preferred itinerary (if you’re taking the boat a far distance, fuel costs may add up more) as well as the location of your bachelorette getaway.
While gratuity is always up to your discretion, it is customary in the United States, Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean to tip in cash after a boating experience. Tips are always appreciated and if your boat captain and crew went above and beyond to provide excellent service for your bachelorette party on the water. This is why it’s a good idea to bring some cash along for a last-minute show of appreciation, an extra $10-20 per person goes a long way.
One person will most likely need to book the boat rental or charter on a credit card. It’s a good idea to get all attendees’ Venmo or CashApp usernames so you can easily request them to pay you back. After you’ve finalized the payment, divide up the cost and send the request to everyone going on the boat day, so it’s all square before you head to the docks.
One thing to consider when planning a bachelorette boat party is determining the location of the boat docks from where you are staying. Not all lake destinations are accessible by public transport, and unless you are renting enough cars to take all attendees, you’ll want to choose a boating destination that is close enough to access by a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft.
Asking about transportation to the marina or docks is always a good first step when communicating with a boat captain or owner. Many can give you an estimate of costs on a rideshare app, or they can change the pick-up/drop-off location to be more convenient. Some owners who operate boat tour companies often also have a transport option that you can add as a service, perfect if you are staying in the heart of a city away from the water.
Once your booking is confirmed, ask for the specific address of the marina/docks so you can route yourself there on boat day. Most boat captains will provide you with special directions if needed, i.e., security gates or other information you need to know.
Once you’ve booked your boat day, you might still have questions for your boat owner or captain to clarify so you can pull off the perfect day on the water. Here are some things you might want to consider asking, depending on the type of boating experience you’re looking for to celebrate the bachelorette
Miami is a fantastic destination for a bachelorette party, and no matter what time of year you visit, you can definitely plan a boat day. Visit Star Island, a man-made island in Biscayne Bay that has some stunning homes to check out. Want to party? Visit the Haulover Sandbar, a premiere boat party destination in Miami. Another great sandbar is the Nixon Sandbar, located in Biscayne Bay, and it’s a great place to party, especially on the weekends.
Have some HGTV fans in your bachelorette group? Check out the stunning mansions on a Millionaire’s Row and learn about the rich and famous people who have bought and sold these homes over the years. You’ll also get some awesome views of the downtown skyline and see the highlights of Biscayne Bay.
If you’re looking for an affordable warm-weather bachelorette destination, Fort Lauderdale is the perfect option for you! For the ultimate sandbar party experience, be sure to stop at New River Sandbar. Here you can jump overboard for a swim, enjoy food & drinks in the sunshine, and meet other boaters anchored nearby.
Cruise to Las Olas Beach for a day of tanning and swimming in the Florida sun! Las Olas Beach is a gorgeous public beach that offers white sand, clear blue water, and picturesque palm trees. After a relaxing day on the water, you can walk across the street and enjoy restaurants, bars, and shopping.
Austin is one of the best bachelorette party spots in the United States, and for a good reason - from thrilling nightlife and incredible food to warm weather and plenty of water activities. No bachelorette party in Austin is complete without a boat party on Lake Travis or Lake Austin!
Devil’s Cove is the go-to party spot on Lake Travis and is filled with boaters every weekend from spring to fall. Enjoy water sports like wakeboarding or water skiing, check out Hippie Hollow Park (warning - it is a partially nude beach!), or visit Pace Bend Park with your boat captain to see all the highlights of these favorite boating spots in Austin.
Charleston is a southern gem location home to palm-tree-lined beaches, endless shopping, historic architecture, an excellent food scene, and vibrant nightlife. It's a great city for a bachelorette boat party! Sitting on the coast, Charleston offers a ton of boating and water experiences for your bachelorette party crew to enjoy. Choose from sailing tours, dolphin watching cruises, pontoon rentals, yacht charters, and so much more.
Folly Beach, an island right off the coast of Charleston, is a fantastic place to visit on your boat rental. Admire scenic views on Folly Beach Pier, sunbathe on the beach, indulge in delicious food at one of the local restaurants, or check out the Morris Island Lighthouse. Snorkeling and surfing are popular water activities in Folly Beach if the bride-to-be loves the water! Stop at Shems Creek for a sandbar party or Wolf Island for a boat party.
If everyone in your group has their passport, why not venture south of the border to Cabo San Lucas in Mexico? Cabo is great for a bachelorette party - not only can you find incredible deals on all-inclusive resorts to save money, but it’s also a top-rated destination for a boat party day. See the iconic Arch, go snorkeling, and indulge in endless tacos and margaritas on board a private boat charter!
Sandbars and islands are awesome spots to check out when boating with a bachelorette crew. If it’s hot, you can jump out and wade in the water or enjoy a swim and a snorkel. At busy areas where other boats tie up or anchor, it can be a great way to meet new people and celebrate the bride-to-be. Bring a frisbee to toss around while hanging out in the shallow waters, or enjoy a photoshoot on an empty beach.
Ask your captain before you book if there are accessible sandbars where you can go with your rental!
For the active brides who love spending time outdoors, you can start your morning off with a kayak or paddleboard trip. Enjoy the scenery around the water while getting in a great workout! Snorkeling is the perfect activity for the ocean-lover brides out there who want to enjoy time on the water. Explore underneath the surface and see colorful fish and marine life. Top bachelorette destinations in Florida, California, and the Caribbean are home to prime snorkel locations.
One of the best parts about a boat charter is stopping for a swim and lounging on floats! This inflatable ring float is a bachelorette boat party essential! Relax, turn up the music, and enjoy some quality time on the water with your favorite ladies.
Not every bachelorette party game is going to be boating-friendly, but a few that you can play while on the water include:
Bachelorette Party Card Games - perfect for playing in the cabin when you take a break from the water. Grab a drink, a bite to eat, and escape the sun for a little bit of game fun while on the water.
While a bachelorette party boat day should be nothing but a fun time, it’s crucial to consider safety when booking a boat rental in a new destination. The best way for everyone to stay safe and have a good time is to book a captained boat charter always. Even if a member of your bachelorette party squad is an experienced boater, taking the responsibility away from your guests and putting it in the hands of a professional who is familiar with their boat and the area you’re visiting will ensure everyone has a good time.
Etsy is your one-stop shop for matching bachelorette party swimsuits! The marketplace has a wide variety of personalized swimsuit options, offering different colors, fonts, text, swimsuit cuts, etc. You can even shop for personalized cups, bags, shirts, and more on Etsy’s website! If personalized swimsuits aren’t your thing you can have all of the girls wear the same color instead!
The type of boat will determine what sort of food you'll want to bring. If your boat or yacht has a BBQ that you're able to use - consider bringing food to grill! Snacks that are easy to pack include chips and dips, veggie and fruit trays, and sandwiches.
Opt for canned drinks - seltzers, beer, premade cocktails, sparkling water, and even canned or boxed wine. Avoid bringing glass at all costs - it's much more of a hassle and some captains even prohibit it on their boats for safety and environmental reasons. Some captains also do not allow red wine onboard - so be sure to ask before you pack that Malbec or Sangria.
Want more inspiration? Check out our post on Easy One-Dish Meals for Boat Trips!
To start planning your perfect bachelorette party, head to www.getmyboat.com and search your dream destinations to see what’s available! You can even download the GetMyBoat app to search your yacht charter options on the go.