You just got a call from a close mate who is going to organize a stag weekend in Europe for another mate of yours. You are excited to go but the last one left you with a few memories you would rather not have. You made a bunch of promises about how you would act on the next one, and now here you are confronted with it, and are nervous about what will likely happen. Here are some guidelines to follow to make sure you have a good time, but do not end up in a local newspaper because of some outrageousness. Follow these rules:
Make a Plan for Yourself
A plan is something that sounds like a chore in the beginning, but on the stag weekend it will end up being the smartest idea you have ever had. You might be going to a new city (or it may seem new when you are drunk) and you need to do some planning about how you will get around. What will happen if you become disconnected from the group? Remember, a usual night out with the guys is likely to be around 5 of you for one evening. The stag party will have a multiple of these numbers for three days, and many of these blokes you may not know well. With the added drinking and craziness, you might forget the hotel or end up as the drunk foreigner trying to find a cab at 4 in the morning. So, planning ahead is essential.
Put a Limit on the Craziness
Stag weekends invite craziness and this is good. One of your good friends is leaving you and joining the ranks of married men who will never have fun again. So part of your job as a stag attendee is to ensure he is reminded of everything he will miss and likely never have access to for the rest of life. However, your job is to also make sure that everyone (especially the groom) comes through the night or weekend safe and whole. This means putting reasonable limits on the fun. No permanent scars, tattoos or any lingering markings that give away the night to others. This means particularly the drinking and games that may include some danger or that get the groom to do things that he may regret in the morning. The goal is to have lots of safe fun and then to have everyone get home safely after the festivities. By the way, no cameras are allowed during the weekend!
Don’t Forget to Eat
Eating will not be a high priority during the weekend, but remember without eating you will get more wasted, feel weaker, and as an added bonus, it will take you longer to recover from the festivities. The saying “eating is cheating” should not apply, you need some food in your stomach and do not be ashamed to tell this to your mates. This means you need to go out to other places besides bars (unless the bars serve food too). And you should start before you start drinking to blunt some of the effects when you are being goaded into the taking the sixth shot of Tequila.
Do Not Drive Anywhere
This one should be obvious, but too often blokes really believe they can limit their drinking and then drive back from the party. This is not what will happen. You will drink way too much and end up staggering around looking for your car keys. So do not drive to any of the parties. If you are have a hire car, leave it at the hotel and take a taxi to the party. And again, have some rough plan on getting back to your accommodation by taxi. Leaving by foot is a bad move unless your digs are literally next door, which is unlikely. The scenario will be that you and your blokes will end up wandering around the streets for hours trying to find the hotel; not a great way to end a hopefully awesome night.
Don’t Forget Local Etiquette
If you are in a foreign city be aware of cultural and social etiquette norms that need to be observed. Many countries do not take kindly to drunk foreigners defacing public property or saying disrespectful things about their people or country. So whether you’re on a stag weekend in Riga, or staying in the UK, you need to remember that social etiquette and cultural protocol still apply. It’s easy to feel comfortable and forget where you are when you’re in the company of your best mates, but don’t make things harder for everyone at the nightclubs and other areas who are just trying to do their jobs.
This plan will keep you and your mates safe if you observe the rules. So write them down and refer to them often. And of course have fun!