Going All Out: Budget Bachelorette in Washington D.C.

Ashleigh was attending medical school in Hershey, Pennsylvania. She was planning her bachelorette in a gorgeous mansion in a suburb of Washington, D.C. This is a budget bachelorette party, complete with a limousine and professional photographer. For Ashleigh’s bachelorette, she was the head organizer. I spoke to Kelly, who was one of the 7 girls in attendance.

The maid of honor was the host and owner of the mansion at which the other 6 attendees stayed. Five girls drove the 5 hours from Hershey to D.C. together to arrive at 2pm Saturday afternoon. The maid of honor made Ashleigh’s favorite cocktail that day’s theme drink: the Flirtini, popularized by the ladies on Sex and the City. On arrival, there were pitchers flowing with Flirtini and plenty of cutely arranged, homemade appetizers. Dinner made by the maid of honor was Ashleigh’s favorite meal: shrimp scampi pasta.

Ashleigh has specifically requested no phallic paraphernalia, but after dinner, a phallic-shaped cake appeared and everyone had to take a turn decorating it with a jar of white frosting. After cake, a limousine arrived that brought the party into Washington D.C. for bar hopping. It was crazy from the beginning because the girls had been drinking steadily from 2pm that afternoon.

One of the girls’ sister is a professional photographer and she was invited to partake in the celebration. She brought her camera and documented the whole night out with gorgeous photos of the girls. Ashleigh was photographed in a crown and sash, and all the girls wore mid-length dresses. This, said Kelly, was one of the most memorable parts of the weekend because they had framable, high-quality photos afterward, much like from a wedding.

After a full day of drinking, the kindness of the limo driver was a huge asset. He took it upon himself to make sure all 8 of the girls made it safely to the car during each venue change, and that all of them arrived home safely.

In addition to professional photos, each of the girls received a set of pink nail polish bottles tied with a sash.

This is great itinerary for a budget bachelorette party that’s not in a big city. Ashleigh carefully planned the itinerary on a shared Google Spreadsheet, and all the details were arranged. Everyone was invited to stay at a friend’s house, the food and the alcohol was prepared in-house, and the photographer was one of the girls’ sister, thus paid a nominal fee. She, of course, had a lot of fun as well.

Renting a house on websites such as the popular Airbnb is a great way to throw a budget bachelorette party. It can be much more cost-effective than a hotel, and you can find beautiful mansions in suburbs outside of cities. It offers privacy, parking space, and a sorority-like sense of community.


Going All Out is a weekly column by Nicole Kwoh that investigates real party itineraries. Each week, the column features a real bachelor/ette party itinerary from a different city around the world. While other columns may provide advice, this is the first one dedicated to what actually happens.


Nicole Kwoh is a travel lover and blogger.