How do you make sure you don’t miss out on enjoying your 21st birthday to the max? Planning is key.

This is why you need to know what to do for your 21st birthday long before the day arrives.

Lucky for you, here are 5 tips for planning the perfect party so your 21st birthday is one for the books.

What to Do for Your 21st Birthday

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When it comes to planning what to do for your 21st birthday, you need to be prepared long in advance–and we’re not just talking cake flavors.

Turning 21 is a major event so if you want to go anywhere fun or make a remarkable memory, you are going to need to make plans in advance.

1. Send Invites in Advance

Ifย you want to make sure your favorite people can be there, you better give them advanced notice.

Sending formal invites is a much classier way to say “I want you there” than the typical day-before group text.

Your 21st birthday should be a serious deal. To let your friends and family know you mean it when you say “come and party,” send them a legit invitation and give them at least 2 weeks’ notice so they can make a plan to be there.

2. Tailor the Event to YOU

Cheap Birthday Party Ideas

It’sย your big day, so take advantage of the one day a year you get to make everything about YOU. If you hate big parties, trim the guest list. If you hate martinis, don’t get ’em.ย 

If you can’t stand themed parties, don’t host one.ย 

Choose all your own favorites from food to venues to friends. This will be one of the last big milestone birthdays you get for a few years, so live it up!

3. Choose a Designated Driver First

We know, we know, you’re focused on the fact that you get to throw back legally now. But in all seriousness, no matter how fun the party was, even the best parties are ruined by drunk driving.

You can have the time of your life, and be smart. After all, you’re 21 now, that’s what being an “adult” is all about.ย 

Determine who will be your designated driverย before you set out for the night. This will prevent you from finding yourself in a place where no one is sober and you’re stuck.

If you do find yourself in a tight spot,ย this transportation companyย is a good bet for getting home safely.

4. Choose Venues/Bars Before the Day

A backyard grill or bar is the perfect gift for grooms

Again, preparation precedes a great party. Be sure to book a venue in advance if you have somewhere special in mind.

It also helps to know beforehand what bars you want to hit up in case any guests need to meet you there.

5. Don’t Overdo It

It’s your birthday, go all out. But don’t go so overboard that you won’t even be able to remember your big bash.

Making a fool of yourself with bad choices or over-drinking never makes for a great time. Combine fun with self-control and you’re sure to have a party worth remembering.

More Party Planning Ideas

Once you decide what to do for your 21st birthday, it’s time to execute those plans.ย 

For more great party planning ideas and inspiration, browse our travel and entertainment section.ย 

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