How to Plan a Terrific Engagement Party in 2024

12 mins read
How to Plan a Terrific Engagement Party in 2024
January 9, 2024
12 mins read

Have you gotten engaged recently? Congrats! As an engaged couple, a fantastic time filled with joy and excitement lies ahead of you. An engagement party is a perfect time to celebrate this big milestone as a couple and hype up your friends and family for the wedding. It will help you spend quality time together as you relax and prepare for the even bigger task ahead of you – planning the wedding of your dreams! 

Don’t know where to start your engagement party preparations? Although we do realise it’s a bit overwhelming to plan, it’s nothing you can’t handle! And to give you a hand, we’ve prepared this short guide that provides all the essential tips you will need on how to plan an engagement party to remember. 

We’re more than sure that after this quick read, you’ll wake your inner event planner and feel confident about planning a fun event in no time.

Determine Your Essential Engagement Party Elements

The key to a successful engagement party is in the details. Make sure to consider all the elements we’ve listed below, and the whole planning process will feel like a breeze! 

Pick a Date 

how to plan a terrific engagement party in 2023
When choosing a date, consider your guests’ availability. 

When would you like to host the party? When choosing your perfect date, consider your guests’ availability (especially those who live far away and will have to travel to your event), the time of the year and the season. For example, summertime is popular for weddings and engagement affairs, which means you’ll have to start your venue search much earlier to find an available spot that will match your needs. Moreover, the hire rates are much higher, so if you’d like to avoid breaking the bank, you may consider a different season.  

In the end, the date is completely up to you! Just try not to fall into the trap of organising the party too early. Take some time to savour this beautiful period before your wedding. Taking a short hiatus will also give you some space to envision this pre-wedding event.

Set a Budget 

the orangery with rustic decor, in London
The Orangery at TT, London

Engagement parties can cost anywhere from £1000 to a few thousand pounds. Although throwing a boisterous and expensive party is tempting, try to be reasonable with your spending. After all, you also have a wedding to pay for! 

Sit down with your partner and other contributors to discuss the exact sum you can pay for the event. Include the venue expenses, food, beverages, decorations, and vendor hire in your calculations. Once you crunch those numbers, it’ll be much easier for you to decide whether you can afford different things or not. And this will help you avoid overspending. 

Apart from that, setting a budget for your engagement party will help you practise restraint before the big day, and when the time comes to plan your wedding, you will feel more confident about managing your expenses!

Make a Guest List 

an intimate private dining room, with wine cellar
A Small private dining room at Brasserie Blanc Southbank, London

Coming up with an engagement party guest list is a good idea for two reasons. 

One: it will help you figure out how much space you need for everyone to be comfortable to mingle and enjoy their time. This is an enormous help  when the time comes to choose the perfect venue.

Two: you’ll ensure that you’re inviting the people who are most important to you and your partner. 

However, when figuring out your guest list, don’t forget about one important rule of etiquette: if you invite people to your engagement party, it’s generally expected that they’ll be attending your wedding. Otherwise, someone’s feelings might get hurt.

Book a Venue

a beautiful venue, with roses hanging from the ceiling
Secret Garden at South Place Hotel, London

Now on to the most exciting part: booking the venue! Generally, we recommend hiring a venue for your engagement party around three months before the event. This way, you’ll have enough time to choose the spaces you like, schedule the viewings, compare the offers, check the reviews and make the final decision. 

When it comes to choosing the perfect venue, keep in mind that this event shouldn’t out-shine your wedding day. You can, for example, choose a classy restaurant for the engagement dinner when you’re planning a wedding at a mansion or go for a cocktail soiree on a modern rooftop venue when considering a rustic wedding. This way, you’ll guarantee your guests completely different experiences and make those two events more memorable. 

Additionally, take into account the location. It should be easy to reach via public transportation or car, so your guests don’t have to spend hours getting to the space. 

Why not check out what Tagvenue has to offer? We list everything from elegant restaurants and bars to romantic patios, quirky venues, and more! You’ll definitely find something that is exciting and matches your price range.

Nail Down Those Engagement Party Details

Have you considered all the essential details like the budget, guest list, and venue options? Now let’s focus on the elements that will make your event more personal and memorable!

Choose a Fun Engagement Party Theme

a colourful venue with quirky decor, London
Conservatory Area at The Alwyne Castle, London

Who doesn’t love a good theme? Apart from setting the mood and making the event more personal, it will guide you through the process of choosing other party elements, such as the menu or activities, making the event cohesive and fun. When you keep this in mind, all the decision-making will seem effortless, and everything will fit together seamlessly!

Don’t pick the same theme for your engagement party and your wedding. For example, if you’ve dreamed of a boho wedding in the countryside, consider throwing a glam engagement party in an upscale and modern venue. Additionally, having different themes at your wedding and engagement party is a great solution if you love a few options and can’t decide which one to pick for your wedding. This way you can have everything you want in two very different events!

Elevate the Party With Engagement Party Decorations

how to plan a terrific engagement party in 2023 5
Whether you have a small or big event, make sure you add some special decorations to the table setting.

Decorations will help you tie the event together and make it visually engaging. Also, they can be used to highlight key elements of the event, such as the dessert table, dance floor, photo booth, and more.

You can go all out or keep it simple with the decor – it’s totally up to you! Just make sure that you at least have something that will set the tone and make everyone feel that it’s your special celebration.

Plan the Menu

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You have plenty of options when it comes to choosing the perfect engagement party menu!

Engagement parties are usually hosted cocktail-style. This, however, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t serve any food (unless you want your guests to starve and leave early). You can serve anything you want, from a full-course sit-down dinner to finger foods or a buffet. Just make sure to specify the information about the type of menu that will be offered in the invitations so that your guests can know what to expect. 

If you have no idea what to serve, don’t be afraid to ask the venue manager for help. They have plenty of experience in catering engagement parties and will surely help you come up with a menu that is both delicious and complementary with your party theme. 

Also, when choosing the menu, make sure that you consider your guests’ dietary restrictions and allergies. Such a gesture will definitely be appreciated and will make your event more memorable!

Don’t Forget About Entertainment and Activities

Engagement parties are all about celebrating the couple’s love. Proper entertainment can help enhance the festive atmosphere and keep guests engaged and entertained throughout the event. Make sure to have some engagement party games up your sleeve, such as The Nearly Wed Game, The Shoe Game or Jenga. Games are perfect icebreakers, they encourage interaction and provide plenty of fun for younger and older generations. 

You can also consider hiring a professional entertainer who will guide you through the event and ensure that everyone has a splendid time.

Send the Invitations and ask for RSVPs

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Send your engagement party invitations early.

Get the engagement party invitations out the door around 6 to 4 weeks before the event. Sending them this early will give your guests plenty of time to make sure they can attend your event. This is especially important if your guests will need to travel to get there. But not only that! Your guests will appreciate your consideration of their time and schedules. It’s a great way to show them that you value their presence. 

Moreover, you’ll receive your RSVPs early and get an idea of how many guests to expect, which will make it easier for you to plan the table layout and nail down the finishing touches of your event.   

Plan the Speeches and Toasts

people at an engagement party, holding a flute of champagne
Take some time to decide who is going to deliver the speech. 

Most engagement parties come with speeches and toasts that express love and support for the engaged couple. They usually take place at the beginning, before cutting the cake (if there’s any) or at the end

Who delivers the speeches?

It’s really up to the engaged couple! When the engagement party is hosted by the bride-to-be’s family, it’s usually the father who gives the opening speech. But it’s not uncommon for the bride and groom to deliver it (just make sure both of them are willing to do it), with time for some extra comments from friends, mothers or respected family members. 

Just make sure to plan accordingly, so everyone knows when it’s their time to take the stage and honour the couple.

Plan the Outfits and the Dress Code 

As it will be the first time for you to appear as an engaged couple, you deserve to shine, so wear something special! Take some time to come up with a great, complementary outfit that will not only match the party vibes but also be comfortable. You can choose something that matches the party theme or something more casual – just make sure it doesn’t outshine your future wedding attire!

To Wrap Things Up 

Now you know how to plan an engagement party in style! Whether you’re planning an intimate gathering or a big bash, our ultimate guide to throwing a terrific engagement party in 2024 will surely come in handy during your preparations! From choosing the perfect venue to selecting the menu, we’ve got all the essential details that you need to know to make your engagement party a memorable affair. 

So put on your party planning hat, grab a glass of champagne, and start creating a celebration that you and your loved ones will never forget!

Want to find the engagement party venue of your dreams?

Hop onto Tagvenue and discover a vast array of venues! From restaurants and bars to museums, art galleries and quirky venues, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from!


When should I host an engagement party?

Usually, an engagement party is hosted within a few months after the proposal. This gives couples enough time to plan the event from start to finish, as well as cherish the engagement period. The engagement party date is totally up to the couple; however, it’s recommended not to host it immediately after the proposal.

Who pays for an engagement party?

Traditionally, it has been the bride’s family who hosted and paid for the engagement party. But nowadays, it’s not uncommon for the couple or the groom’s family to contribute as well.

The bottom line is that there are no hard and fast rules about who should pay for the event. It’s up to the couple and their families to decide what works best for them based on their financial situation and preferences. Make sure to discuss this with your family and partner before you begin the planning process. 

Who typically hosts an engagement party? 

Again, traditionally, the bride’s parents would host the engagement party. But today, there are no set rules about who should host the party. Here are a few possibilities:

➡️The couple –  It’s not uncommon for the engaged couple to host the party themselves. Especially when they have a clear vision of what they want the party to be like and are happy to plan and host the event on their own.
➡️The groom’s parents – In some cases, the groom’s parents may choose to host the engagement party. This can be a great way to welcome the bride-to-be into the family and show their support for the couple.
➡️A friend or family member – If neither set of parents is interested in hosting the party, a friend or family member may step in to take on the responsibility. This can be a great option if the person is experienced in event planning or wants to contribute in a meaningful way to the celebration.
➡️The couple’s friends – Sometimes, the couple’s friends may choose to host a more casual engagement party, such as a backyard barbecue or potluck. This can be a fun way to celebrate without a lot of pressure or formality.

As you can see, there are many possibilities regarding who should host the party. Ultimately,  the decision on who should host it will depend on the couple’s preferences.

What happens at an engagement party?

Engagement parties are all about the couple and their love for each other. Usually, toasts, speeches, dancing, and some fun engagement party games are included to honour the couple and their recent engagement. Other than that, these events are a great opportunity for guests to mingle and get acquainted with each other, ensuring that they will have a great time together at the wedding.

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How to Plan a Terrific Engagement Party in 2024