Straight up, this topic is hard for us to talk about because we don't want to encourage anyone to put themselves at risk. COVID-19 cases are rising in several states. There’s still no vaccine and therapeutics are largely tentative. The lowest risk behavior, right now, is to postpone your BACH party.
One idea we love and one we'll continue to suggest is breaking with tradition and celebrating with your friends after your wedding. Hopefully things will be safer and much more predictable by then.
That said, we also know many of you aren’t gonna delay the celebrations another minute. So, we're going to do our best here to provide you with some insights on what other parties are doing in light of the pandemic: where they’re celebrating and how they’re trying to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
Everyone is living in a different situation, so please make your own judgments. Our take is that the health and safety of our communities is everyone’s responsibility. We’ll always put your health and the health of your loved ones at the top of every decision we make. Ultimately, though, it’s up to you and your group’s comfort level.
Groups are finding safer dwellings with Airbnb
In a recent poll, we learned that BACH Fam—over the course of just a couple months, since quarantine began—has gravitated towards booking home rentals, like Airbnb, over hotels. Whether this is a case of correlation or causation, we can’t say, but it would make sense that folks want to limit contact with people outside of their immediate BACH group during the pandemic.
Rather than interacting with hotel staff and other guests, the Fam is choosing to bunk up in a house together for an adult slumber party. In many cases, this means loading up on groceries and supplies beforehand, and limiting the party to the house’s property.
What are Airbnb’s cleaning guidelines during the pandemic?
Airbnb has updated its guidelines in an effort to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. With new cleaning protocols, Airbnb hosts must disinfect frequently touched surfaces and allow a 24-hour waiting period before new guests arrive. The hope here is that this buffer allows time to properly clean and sanitize all areas accessible to the guests. But, as always, be sure to wash your hands 🧼
They’re keeping the party (semi) local, and they’re opting outside
To avoid flying and lengthy travel during COVID-19, the Fam is keeping the party within driving distance. Many are staying in the same state or making it a reasonable road trip destination (2 to 5 hours) rather than a flight.
Where are they going?
They’re heading to mountains, lakes, beaches, and national parks across the country. They’re opting outside to find more spacious and remote venues to limit the risk of transmission, rather than raging in big, populated cities.
Instead of ordering bottle service at the club, they’re sipping Nalgene bottles on the hiking trail, drinking White Claws at the lake, or soaking in Vitamin D at the private pool.
From the Catskills to the Sierra Nevadas -- from Hilton Head to Lake Tahoe -- the Fam is spending more time celebrating outdoors this summer. All the research is still early, but something almost every expert can agree on is that being outside significantly decreases the risk of infection.
They’re going back to camp
Some are seeing this as an opportunity to give the BACH party an adult camp spin -- a house party weekend filled with events from their childhoods like Capture the Flag, arts and crafts, truth or dare, and 90’s-themed dance parties (with plenty of Britney, obviously).
They’re keeping the festivities more wallet-friendly
A new trend based on the overall impact of the pandemic on wedding parties is that folks now have lower budgets for planning a bachelorette party, shifting travel decisions to focus more around the availability of budget-friendly activities. This is a pretty easy and natural adjustment when the weekend is just one long house party.
The price of the party is simply the cost of the rental, your share of the supplies, and your favorite bottle of alcohol.
They’re making COVID-19 testing and temperature-taking mandatory
There’s no way to completely eliminate the possibility of COVID-19 transmission. No test is 100% accurate and the tests can take anywhere from one to several days to come back. Additionally, people will still be traveling (after their tests) to get to the destination.
Still, getting tested is definitely a step in a more cautious direction. Tests are widely available in most states and incredibly easy to schedule. Many urgent cares offer the tests (both the current test and antibody test). You can also book the test through your primary care doc, or even at your local pharmacy. Many Rite Aids, Walgreens, and CVS stores are offering the tests.
Additionally, lots of parties are taking people’s temperatures before everyone enters the house. This helps monitor each other—and keep everyone safer—throughout the weekend.
They’re quarantining on the back end of trips to protect vulnerable loved ones
While young, healthy people may feel comfortable spending the weekend with a handful of friends, they might live with parents who have an underlying health condition or a sister who’s pregnant. As such, they are quarantining from their family afterwards and getting re-tested before seeing them.
The only thing worse than getting sick yourself, is putting your loved ones at risk because of your choices. These are all entirely personal decisions, but we have a human and civic duty to protect members of our families and our communities, especially those most at risk.
They’re obeying state guidelines and quarantine travel mandates
This one’s pretty straightforward: the Fam is following the rules and state mandates. Sure, there’s no way to track whether someone quarantines after traveling from a high-risk state, but many partiers are responsibly following these state guidelines, including the 14-day quarantine rule.
When in doubt, they’re postponing their real BACH party and celebrating virtually
When in doubt, the Fam is keeping things virtual. This is the lowest risk option, and you can still have a lot of fun with your crew. From drinking games to cooking classes and comedy shows, the BACH app has tons of virtual experiences to enjoy from the safety of your home and iPhone. Feeling especially active? The app includes fitness classes and scavenger hunts, too.
They’re keeping it real and looking at the big picture
Altering or even delaying a BACH party is pretty benign in the grand scheme of things. While the Fam is excited to party, they’re keeping their health and the health of their loved ones top of mind.
Our advice? Keep the lines of communication open and talk about any concerns beforehand, BACH Fam. If members of the squad are skeptical, you can always push the festivities back so that everyone can celebrate, stress-free.
And if someone chooses to opt out of the BACH, don’t take it personally. Let them do so, without question or guilt. While they may be young and healthy, they could be regularly seeing a sick parent or a friend with an underlying health condition. You just never know. Given these uncertain times, they shouldn’t have to explain.
Stay safe out there,