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How to Host a Virtual Holiday Party

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Written by: Brigid Fallon

The holidays look slightly different this year - consider Thanksgiving the appetizer. That doesn’t mean you can’t be festive this holiday season, you’ll just need to adapt to a new normal and make new memories in new ways. It’s definitely time to get creative. 

We’ve come up with a few tips on how to host a virtual party this season that will keep everyone’s spirits up. Whether it’s a family Christmas celebration, a friends get-together, or an office party- we got you.

But first, how do you start? 
Well, it’s simple. Decide what platform you want to use; Zoom, Google Hangouts, Facetime. Create an invitation to send via text, e-vite, email, or even a paper invitation to make it even more formal and real. Make sure the invitation is sent on time with the correct time and date as well as the link to the meet. No one wants to be waiting for a zoom call that doesn’t exist...

Tip #1: Plan your virtual party in advance 
Whether you planned a theme, a gift exchange, or a hefty heap of holiday activities, You want to make sure there is no awkward silence! Keep it light and fun.

Tip #2: Do something fun and creative for food and drinks *yum*
Food and drinks are key, just ask Santa. He doesn’t bother going to a house unless he gets milk and cookies, and your guests expect the same. Also, due to Covid, people have become connoisseurs in both food and drinks whether it’s charcuterie boards, making bread, or becoming mixologists. 

Everyone could use a drink and treat after this whirlwind of a year so here are a few easy ways to mix in the part of the holidays that everyone looks forward to:

  • Wine Tasting: have everyone find a fun wine and curate a list of all the wines to send out to your group. Then, have everyone go buy a bottle of each for an at-home wine tasting! Put on your PJ’s and taste each one together, one by one and discuss like the classy ladies you are. 
  • Recipe Exchange: Have everyone exchange recipes to one other person that they have to make for the virtual event. You can use a generator online or do it yourself. Recipes can range from appetizers to dessert, it is up to you! Be sure to make them ~holiday~ themed!
  • Cookie Decorating: You can either have members bake their own cookies or send cookie kits right to their door for a fun night of decorating. 
  • Christmas Carry-Out Night: This is for those looking to keep things really simple but still feel connected. Decide on a local restaurant (if you live locally) to eat at, the way you normally would if you were going OUT to dinner, and all friends order from the same place, It’ll feel like you all are in person at the same place!
  • Virtual Cocktail Hour: if you are keeping it simple, plan a cocktail hour. Invite your group and encourage them to become a mixologist for the night by sending a list of cocktail ideas that they can make at home! Happy Box has plenty of cocktail mixers, cocktail accessories, and syrups to choose from, and even a cute, helpful hangover kit so you can show your friends and family some TLC after a crazy night of virtual drinking. Check out our Hot Toddy Box that delivers your cocktail needs.

Tip #3: Plan Activities
To make this feel like a real party or event, keep the party busy! Consider offering prizes for games.

  • Host an Ugly Sweater Contest: Make an ugly holiday sweater the mandatory dress code and vote on who has the ugliest/most festive. This will also help people get into the holiday spirit. Have everyone vote on who’s is the best 
  • Secret Santa/White Elephant: Have everyone participate in Secret Santa with a little time in advance. Use a generator online like Elfster that sends their chosen person via text or email and set a price limit! Make sure everyone includes their address so members can get their gifts in time for the event. Happy Box is the ultimate gifting destination for long distance giving and secret santa- so check out our curated holiday boxes or create your own gift!
  • Holiday Charades: You can create a holiday-esque list for charades that you send to everyone via email/text. Divide everyone into teams and each team guesses what was chosen off the list; it can be a movie title, song, book title, virtually anything! 
  • Name that Holiday Tune: Create a playlist of holiday cover songs  and play the song for a few seconds. The person to guess the name of the song first , wins a point. Keep track of the points and announce the winner at the end.
  • Holiday Trivia: Find questions and answers online that go hand in hand with the theme of your party. If it’s a cocktail themed party, make it about mixology and drink history; if  it is a bunch of your childhood friends make it about each other and some memories! Divide everyone into teams and let the games begin!  

Covid-19 has changed so much within the last year but that is no reason it should change holiday rituals. Yes, a virtual holiday party will look slightly different but with this guide you’ll be hosting a party that doesn’t actually suck. Yay! Merry Zoom-mas.

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