Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Ideas For A Winter Stag Do

Lady Dressed For Winter in a Santa Outfit!
Currently we are having a very nice end to September and maybe a warm start to October, but let's not kid ourselves people, winter will be on us like a randy dog finding a kennel full of bitches, pre op!

Wether it's a Christmas wedding, a Valentine's day wedding or just a winter wedding; winter is a fantastic time to have a stag do, for a start it's usually cheaper and muddier, what more do you want, jam on it?

THE UK

The UK is a fantastic choice, that's why it's called Great Britain (I'm more cheesy than than a packet of Wotsits).

If you are feeling really brave and want to beast the lads book Canyoning or White Water Rafting, honestly this will be memorable, we have some incredible stag do packages in North Wales with these activities in.

If you prefer a more indoor affair, the UK has some incredible facilities and activities. From indoor karting and Bubble Football for the active groups, cider and whisky tasting for the groups looking to keep warm and drunk!

If you are looking for a bargain, winter time is the best time to get cheap accommodation in the seaside resorts which are packed in the summer such as; Bournemouth or Newquay.

Bournemouth will be a lot busier then Newquay, and has some incredible activities, we have a fantastic package packed full of activities and is £55 cheaper then the summer price!

Bournemouth, Edinburgh, Leeds, Bristol, Manchester, Chester, Nottingham and even Reading are all incredible stag destinations that will be busy in the winter months.

EUROPE & BEYOND

Tackle winter and head on and fly to the Baltics, currently Riga is the stag destination of choice, where you will find cheap hotels, activities and incredible nightlife and in the winter the prices are so low!

Above all that you have some fantastic winter stag activities which embraces the weather like groomsmen embrace a free bar at a wedding.

Snow Mobiles Racing
Try out the Snowmobiles they are incredibly fast and are loads of fun to drive, alternatively if you want the speed but don't want to do much except for holding on for dear life then you MUST have a go at the Bobsleighing.

Bobsleighing in Riga will see you racing down an Olympic standard track like a torpedo, not once but twice, in the summer months you can still Bobsleigh however you will have wheels rather than blades on ice which is standard for the winter months.

If you want to get away from the cold and heat up your bones the nearest places with almost guaranteed sunshine is the Canary Islands such as: Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote etc.

Cyprus can be warm however, rains a lot in January and February especially in Paphos and can be quiet in Ayia Napa.

However there is always Las Vegas, guaranteed sunshine, all night parties, all day pool parties and possibly the best stag do you will never remember.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Booking Flights For Your 2016 Stag Party

If you are thinking of going abroad next year for your stag do then read on people as important news is in.

Easyjet and Ryanair have released their flights all the way up to June 2016.

"So why is this big news?"

Good question my laddie, most stag parties use Ryanair and Easyjet as their prices are low and they offer loads of routes.

The norm with flight seats especially low cost and scheduled airlines is they sell their cheapest seats first:

For example:

The first 1 -  20 seats = £25.00 per seat
20 - 49 seats = £35.00 per seat
 50 - 75 seats = £75.00 per seat

and so on...

We also currently have a very strong pound bringing down continental airport taxes which will also help bring down your ticket.

All this contributes to low seat prices, so booking your stag do early really down make sense.

The only downside is that you need to book and pay in full for all your flight seats, so that means you will need everyone's first and surnames all spelt correctly (matches their passport).

Steve usually = Stephen / Steven

By the way Spud is not a real name!

If you have a large group of mates you will need to be very organised as you don't want to be paying for maybes or people who say they are going to go and drop out leaving you with an unwanted flight.

Word of caution

Do not pay for a seat for someone you do not know or is known to be flaky (unreliable), the reason for this is airlines stick to their booking conditions like glue.

Especially Low Cost Airlines*, as apparently they make a lot of their money through the added extras and booking fees, for example if someone drops out and you have a replacement, there is a name change fee.

According to their website, Ryanair Charge £110 each way** so for a return journey that's £220.00! It may be cheaper just to book another flight seat, so check online first, these details can be found here on the Ryanair website.

Easyjet on the other hand currently take a different route (no pun intended) on name changes and charge:

Name Change Fee  - £35.00 each way**

PLUS

The difference between the price of the flight seat when you booked it and the current price, so if your flight cost £100 and it's now £150.00, you will also be charged the difference (£50.00).

So the theoretical cost to change the name would be £35.00 x 2  name change fee (charge each way) + £50 flight price difference = £120.00

You can find out more details on the Easyjet's website.

There is another way

If you don't think you can get your stag group's act together there is another way, book your flight with a scheduled airline*** and use their group department.

Providing you have over 10 people in your group the terms are much more flexible with small deposits (can be as little as £5 per seat), you don't have to pay the balance until approximately 6 weeks before you travel and the names are not due until a couple of weeks before.****

ALTERNATIVELY
Book your flight inclusive stag do package through DesignaVenture. They will handle all this for you with ease, making your break abroad hassle free. DesignaVenture are also ATOL protected - our ATOL number is 6596.


*Low cost airlines is a generic term for airlines such as Easyjet, Ryanair, Jet2, Flybe, Wizz Air etc. 

**This fee is based on changing the name online, if you make the changes at the airport or over the telephone the price is higher.

*** Scheduled airlines include British Airways, Air France, KLM etc.

****Each airline's terms and conditions vary, as with all travel booking please make sure you understand the terms and conditions before you book.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Best Man Duties

Nerds watching a lady strip on a stag do
This is your 'Best Man Duties'... how it really is, so pull up a chair digest and get excited about the big day, after all you are one of the main members of the wedding congregation!

First Of All organise The Stag Do
You will quickly discover that people say one thing but actually mean another, ‘yes’ means ‘maybe’ and ‘no’ means ‘I might change my mind’. Spreadsheets will become the bane of your life and you will probably question why your mate has some very annoying flakey friends!

That’s where DesignaVenture can help relieve the pressure, on this amazing website (we are a little biased) you can book online, view your booking online, send people invites, get them to pay individually (online or over the telephone), see who has paid at any time and on top of all that you have the incredible DesignaVenture customer service, which is second to none.

At The Church

Assisting The Groom On His Wedding Day
First and foremost you will need to provide him with mints to hide the smell of Dutch courage that accompanied his breakfast (provided by you of course).

Be calm and don't become a super nag as the pressure builds…. think about it all you have to do is get him to the church on time, be in charge of the ushers, make sure you have the rings and make a blinding speech, easy uh?

Take Charge Of The Ushers
Bring out your assertive / bossy side and try not to go all diva on the day, no one likes a Diva, ask Elton John's husband! 

So become Team Captain…do your mate proud! Clear the lines of communication with the Groom, find out exactly what is expected of you and the rest of the Groomsmen, you don’t want to be caught off-side on the day!

You Are The Wingman
2 Wedding RingsWhilst waiting for the beautiful blushing bride stand next to the groom and reassure him that his wife-to-be has not left him standing at the alter. Protect his vulnerable side from the sea of eyes that will be on him (until the Bride arrives of course)!

Become Lord Of The Rings
Enough about Elton John already!

You will develop ‘pocket checking’ OCD on the day as you continually have hot flushes and heart palpitations at the thought that you have obviously developed a hole in your pocket and simply lost the rings, don’t over check or you could create that hole!

Of course it would be funny to pretend you had forgotten the rings at that precise moment, dabbing all your pockets for a second or two, after all you are the best man, and your role is to keep the ceremony light hearted.

Autograph Ready
If you have also been given the responsibility of signing the Wedding Certificate, make sure you don't get ‘signing stage fright’. When the bride and groom look back at their marriage certificate they don't really want to think that their 3 year old toddler had defaced it!

If all else fails, consider writing a ‘before you leave for the church’ checklist to save yourself from wanting to dissolve into the church pews and become invisible when you realise that you’ve actually forgotten to do something!

The Party

Rule 1
Best Man Holding Up his Champagne GlassDo not get hammered before your speech, no one wants to see that and looking back at the day, you won't either. One or two for Dutch courage is fine, wait until after you have finished your best man duties before propping up the bar.

Prepare A Killer Best Man Speech
This is now your domain, your chance to shine - you will spend months, weeks, days and hours of wishing you weren’t at the top of your best mate's bezzy mates list, but you are so make him proud.

You need to work out what is, and definitely, what is NOT, acceptable in your speech, you don’t want to find yourself ditched by your best mate after the wedding.

If you need help with some jokes we did a previous post on this call Hilarious Jokes Your Best Man's Speech Needs.

Alternatively if you don't know where to start and need a rescue remedy for your speech block? Go to Stand Up Speeches, it might cost you a few pennies but you're in good hands, one of the writers write for TV don't you know.


Friday, 4 September 2015

Book Your Stag Do Early

We are always banging on about booking early, it really is the best route when arranging a stag do, well you know what they say; "the early bird catches the worm" and "the second mouse get's the cheese!"

I know it's Autumn (officially, Autumn starts on the 22nd September at 10:29pm if you're interested, I am sure you're not), but booking your stag do for next summer is a good call.

I feel you need reasons why you should book early:

  • If you are booking flights, booking your seats early doors will save you a whole pile of money, depending on where you wish to fly to, you could save up to £200 per person (I might as well stop there, I feel saving a whopping £200 per person is evidence enough, however I will prevail).
  • You should get your first choice of accommodation
  • Booking early will also mean activity slots will be empty ready for your group to grab
  • You'll get your first choice of activities and times
There are also more practical reasons to book early which will help you manage your group better. 

Booking your weekend early confirms the date of your stag, so the boys can put it in their diaries avoiding double booking the weekend. Most of these guys will have wives or girlfriends so getting in their and booking a date before they do makes sense.

Usually for a stag package without flights to the UK or Europe all you have to do is stick a minimal group deposit down (DesignaVenture's is currently £60.00), with a rough idea of numbers and then invite people to pay their deposit direct, online or via the dog and bone.

Booking before the end of the year, to go the following year, can also mean getting a package or an activity before the price goes up, bargain!

So to wrap this up, you're going to get married, you're going to have a stag, so surprise yourself, be totally efficient and get something confirmed before some other groups steals your weekend.