Going away can make for a sad occasion. The idea of someone relocating to a new state or even country changes family dynamics and friendships. But what if someone’s just leaving for a visit to new and far off lands, and you want to throw them a bon voyage party?
Having a farewell party for someone going on an international trip is always a good idea. It gives them the chance to say goodbye for however long and keep everyone updated on what’s going on.
But how can you ensure a party that the recipient will love and no one will forget? Here are a few things to keep in mind so everyone enjoys themselves.
Pick a Location That Can Hold Enough People
Finding the right location can be a challenge, depending on how many people you’ve invited to the party. Are you planning on several individuals, a group of over twenty, or possibly more?
Take these factors into consideration when deciding if you should rent out a banquet room or some other public space, or if you can save money by having it at someone’s home.
Make a preliminary guest list and figure out the possible number of folks attending. Use this number when figuring out where to hold the party. If necessary, consider having a backup location in case many people don’t show up.
Make a List and Send Out Invites
Compile a list of friends, family, and loved ones who you think would want to attend this occasion. Then, start selecting invitations that match the theme of the going away party.
Know what to include on your invitation such as:
- Nature of the party
- Attire for the party (black tie, casual, etc)
- Any other information that’s necessary
When it comes to sending out invites, the sooner the better. Sending them out at least a month in advance can help folks plan ahead so they’ll have time to attend the party.
Consider Putting Together a Gift List for the Recipient
Although many people don’t think of gifts when putting together a farewell party, it’s a nice touch to give the recipient. Consider giving them something they’ll need and use during their time overseas.
Money always makes for an excellent gift. It can get used to help fund their travels or do something they otherwise wouldn’t have done on their own. Giving the gift of travel is a popular new way to help someone get out there and enjoy life, without buying material items.
Gifts such as phone cards, a new camera or even a smartphone can help them take pictures and stay in touch, even when they’re far away.
Finally, consider cashing in some money and having it converted to the currency they’ll use in their new temporary home. This can make it easier when they arrive that first day and try to adjust to lie elsewhere.
If all else fails, give them a gift to a store where they can stock up on essentials before making the trip, and come prepared with everything they need.
Plan Food and Decorations
Food is an important part of any party. What’s saying goodbye without breaking bread together and enjoying one last meal?
Consider how elaborate you want to go on the meal. It could be as simple as pizza, burgers, or some other local favorite the guest of honor enjoys.
If you want to make it extra-special, consider serving food from the country that the guest is going to. This way, everyone gets to sample a taste of the country, even if they cannot visit there.
Consider what decorations are needed, too. Do you want to show off any special decor from the country getting visited? Or perhaps you’d like to keep things simple with some balloons and a farewell banner.
Either way, a few decorations can make it special for the guest of honor and remind them they’ll be missed.
End the Farewell Party With a Speech to Remember
Before the party is about to end, bring everyone together, and have a toast and special speech for the guest of honor. You can discuss how you’ll all miss them, the fun you hope they have, and how you wish safe and happy travels.
You can even throw in a joke about passport renewal, just to keep things fun and lighthearted (although chances are they’ve already renewed, or at least they should have).
You can have one long speech, or make time for everyone to give several short speeches. As a final way to wish safe travels, get a farewell card, and have everyone sign it.
This gives the guest a special item to remember that they’re sure to cherish for always.
Take Plenty of Pictures So You’ll Never Forget
If this is a surprise for the guest of honor (and even if it isn’t), they’ll want to remember this day forever. Take lots of pictures along the way.
This can include setting up the party, the guest in a group shot with everyone, and individual pictures of each attendee with the guest. Putting all the pictures together and presenting them in an album is a great gift to give upon return.
Since the guest will have photos of their own, you can swap out and share.
Planning a farewell party is a fun and exciting way to remind someone you care about them, wish them well, and want them to have a great time. With a little planning and forethought, you can create the ultimate party they’ll never forget.
If you’re looking to take a vacation of your own, check out our blog post on the ten best vacation spots to pick overseas and start creating memories of your own.