Stag and Hen parties abroad
More than a million Brits head off abroad for hen and stag parties each year. Whether it’s a city break or a weekend in the sun, it’s likely to be a holiday you’ll never forget. So here are some tips to help ensure you remember it for all the right reasons.
- Research where you’re staying, particularly the local laws and customs on things like alcohol, dress and when to visit the country. The Foreign & Commonwealth website is the best place for this. For example, some areas in Spain don’t allow alcohol in public places, including beaches. While in some Italian towns and cities it’s illegal to eat and drink next to churches and public buildings.
- Check your passport is up to date and if you need a visa get it in plenty of time before you travel.
- It’s important to have travel insurance even if you’re only going away for the weekend. If you’re travelling in Europe make sure you have a European and Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you as this entitles you to the same medical treatment as the locals where you’re staying.
- If you’re going to be drinking alcohol (and let’s face it, most people do at a stag or hen party) it’s a good idea to:
- eat something before you start drinking to line your stomach
- drink lots of water so you don’t dehydrate (particularly if you’re in a hot climate where your tolerance to alcohol will be lower)
- pace yourself and be careful what you drink – not only are measures often larger abroad than in the UK but the local drink may be a lot stronger than you think.
- If you’re staying or visiting someone in a hotel or apartment with a balcony take extra care as this is where many holiday accidents take place especially if people have been drinking or taking drugs. There have been a number of serious accidents on balconies in recent years some of which have been fatal or resulted in life changing injuries.
- If you fancy a dip in the sea or a pool where you’re staying, do this before you have a drink. A surprising number of people seem to think it’s a good idea to go into the water after a few drinks –it’s not!
- Think about your personal safety. If you’re out in the evening with friends and want to leave the party early always make sure you leave with someone. It’s also good to keep a lookout for your friends. If you see one of them heading off alone make sure someone goes with them. And never let a friend leave with someone they don’t know. It’s common sense but always worth reminding everyone. If you do lose someone or need to report a crime, see our guide for details of what to do.
- Take the phone numbers of everyone in your party then if you or a friend get separated from your group you’ll have a way of contacting each other.
- Keep your bank and credit cards, cash and any valuables you have on you safe when you’re out. Thieves often target hen or stag parties as it’s easy to get distracted when you’ve had a few drinks and are enjoying yourself.
- It’s good to have a laugh but try and keep the volume down especially in residential areas late at night. If you and your mates are in high spirits the last thing you need is to be arrested for causing a disturbance of the peace.