10 Steps to a Fun After-Party (That Won’t Break the Bank)

Keep the party going after the flower girl has passed out and the band has packed up. Nail down a few key plans for a smooth transition from the reception to late night. First, look at your guest list to determine what kind of after-party you should have: Is your bridal party full of up-all-night revelers or low-key loungers? Then estimate the number of guests who will likely join and figure out if you can host it at your reception venue, a hotel suite, a local restaurant or the karaoke bar down the street. Throw in a few inexpensive extras (like midnight snacks and morning-after treats) and you’re good to go. Read our wedding after-party primer, then check off the 10 simple planning tips below to host your own!

1. Reserve a cozy spot where you can dance, talk and relax with after-partygoers.

From the album: An Elegant Island Wedding in Lanai, HI

2. Choose one or two (inexpensive) decor elements that pop. 

3. Repurpose your wedding flowers as decoration!

From the album: A Rustic Orange Wedding in Mt. Hood, OR

4. Serve late-night (read: fried) food favorites.

5. Set up speakers and be your own iPhone DJ (or make your own music!).

From the album: A Modern Rustic Wedding in Lancaster, PA

6. Set up a group activity like a card game or home karaoke machine.

From the album: A Formal Glam Wedding in Seattle, WA

7. Since your photographer is off the clock, let guests capture the moment with Polaroids and disposable cameras.

From the album: A Rustic Destination Wedding

8. Arrange transportation for you and your guests to get back to the hotel.

From the album: A Classic Rustic Wedding in Beverly, MA

9. Send revelers home with a breakfast treat for the morning (plus water and Advil!).

From the album: A Bright Summer Wedding in Corbett, OR

10. Say good-bye whenever you want– you’ve had a long day!

From the album: A Vintage Country Wedding in Nashville, TN

See More!

> Wedding reception after-party primer

> The ultimate list of 90s wedding songs

> Lance Bass is planning a pajama wedding after-party?