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On stags and hens…

When I was at the age when my crowd were starting to marry, a stag night just consisted of a load of blokes getting even more drunk than usual. An ‘exotic’ location was a different pub to where we normally went. I would imagine hen nights were pretty much the same, but as I never participated in one I can’t actually confirm that.

Several decades later and stag and hen parties have become almost an industry in their own right – a wealth of companies exist which promote bashes with a difference, and dressing up for the occasion in group uniform has become standard practice.

This is good, because when one such group enters the pub you’re in, you know exactly what to expect and can make a sharp exit.

It’s also good for adult retailers, as recent research published by Travelodge has revealed that the second biggest expense for stag and hen nights participants is an outfit and props.

For men this worked out at a staggering average of £107. Surprisingly, the biggest expense of the night is on travelling and accommodation at £120, while just £85.63 is spent on food and drink. The obligatory stripper takes a further £57.93 out of the budget.

Women spend less on an outfit and props, though it’s a still impressive £94.04, with £111 going on accommodation and travelling to and from the party, food and drink consuming another £68.21 and almost £50 going on ‘entertainment’. Hmm.

Of the 4,000 adults polled, men expected to attend two stag parties this year, at an average cost of £370.21 each, while women will restrict themselves to a single hen night, at a cost of £323.41.

With August being one of the busiest months for weddings, I know what I would be stocking up with and promoting this month if I was a retailer.

I haven’t actually been on a stag night for many years, and the older I get the less likely it seems I will again, so unless someone establishes a dinosaur night – where about-to-be divorced dads can celebrate their ‘I’m back in the game’ status with their peers – the joys of dressing up with a group of other pretend-firemen or nuns will remain off limits to me.

I’m not complaining though – £370 for a night out? That’s more than my first car cost. And music today – you can’t understand the words…