One of the greatest gifts you can give a friend is a birthday celebration that’s both fun and memorable. Anyone can order a birthday cake and arrange for a group to meet at a local eatery. Such a gathering would definitely be appreciated, but it’s also one that’s so predictable. With a bit of forethought, you can easily put together a day or night that’s sure to impress! Here are a few tips that can help you figure out how to organise a great birthday for a friend.
Think about your friend. So obvious but so often overlooked, if you start by taking time to think about your friend, you’ll be well on your way towards organising a truly unique birthday experience. If you’re making the effort to organise this special occasion, you and the friend are probably pretty close. So grab a pen or your laptop and start jotting down a few notes.
First start with the obvious. Is the friend male or female? Single or involved? A teetotaller or loves a few drinks? Conservative or extravagant? You get the idea.
After jotting down the obvious, start digging deeper into your friend’s personality. Think about how your friend enjoys spending his or her spare time. Think about all those things your friend’s always wishing s/he could do. Make notes of your friend’s hobbies, interests and passions.
Although you might feel like you’re creating a bio to upload to an online dating site, this really isn’t your goal. The information you jot down is what you’re going to use to help focus on some ideas that are sure to make this birthday celebration one that your friend is going to remember forever.
To surprise or not to surprise? That’s an important question. As you think about your friend’s likes and dislikes, one issue to consider is how well your friend tolerates surprises. Many people just don’t like to be surprised. If you’re trying to plan a fun celebration, you could easily spoil the festivities right from the get-go if you plan a surprise party for someone who isn’t comfortable being surprised. If you’re unsure whether or not the birthday celebration should be a surprise, ask others for their opinions.
And then also consider this. Throwing a surprise party is going to involve a whole other layer of planning. Not only
are you going to have to plan the birthday events, you’ll also have to figure out how you are going to get your friend wherever he or she needs to be – and more importantly, how he or she is going arrive looking presentable. Not many
people will appreciate being the centre of attention without being given the opportunity to “dress for the occasion.”
No doubt about it, it’ll be much easier to plan a birthday celebration that’s not a surprise – and it’ll likely be safer.
However, the element of surprise will go far towards organising a great birthday for a friend.
Put together a budget. No one likes to talk about the b-word, but unless you have more money than you know what to do with, it’s highly advisable to put together a budget that you’ll be able to stick with. If you’re of the opinion that “nothing is too good for my friend” understand that while such an attitude is certainly admirable, it can also cause you some financial trouble down the road.
And never count on the reciprocity factor. Just because you spend lots of money on your friend’s birthday doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she is going to do the same when your birthday rolls around. That would be a big assumption and you know what they say about the word assume!
If money’s tight, you could ask others you plan to invite to pitch in to help defray the costs. You could either request a
certain amount from each guest, or you could ask for others to contribute an amount they feel comfortable contributing. But make sure you don’t double dip! In other words, if guests contribute money beforehand, don’t expect them to pitch in later on when the bar tab needs to be paid!
Now it’s time to get creative. And getting creative is the key to organising a great birthday for a friend. If you’ve taken time to consider your friend’s likes and dislikes and your budget, you’ll now have some boundaries within which to start planning.
The sooner you start planning, the more birthday options you’ll have. Plus you’ll have that much more time to nail down the details. And the sooner you nail down the details, the more relaxed you’re going to be when the big day rolls around. After all, what’s the sense of organising a great birthday for a friend if you can’t relax and enjoy it, too?