As a concept it really shouldn’t be that difficult. There’s nine of you. Eight of you know that in July you will be going to Prague, one of you doesn’t. On paper the idea of keeping it like this until you get to the airport really shouldn’t be a problem. Except it ALWAYS is.

As the old war time adage went, loose lips sink ships. In this case ‘drunk’ lips don’t just sink the ship, they climb on to it, throw everyones luggage off and then tell the groom to be that he’s going to Southampton. I’ve been on several secret stags and have only been on one where the stag was still blissfully unaware of the destination we were heading to as we boarded the flight.

My advice on this would be to get to know your enemy. If you are a tight group of friends then you’re probably already aware of who is most likely to spill the beans, whether it’s through over excitement, short term memory loss from too many sherbets on a night out or just a lack of brain cells. This man needs to be tracked at all times, kept off any group email that contains the stag and reminded of that fact that it’s a surprise every time you get together.

A few years ago this wouldn’t have been the herculean task that it is today. Unless it was a night out at the pub, groups of friends would go for weeks if not months without exchanging as much as an ‘alright?’. Now everyone and his brother is all over facebook, whatsapp and pinterest( just me?). Add to this the daily email exchange that manages to make eight hours in an office slightly more bearable, and you have got a full scale data protection nightmare on your hands.

I’d love to say that there is a full proof solution to it all. If truth be told though, I am the big mouthed, absent minded, heartbreaker who gives the game away two weeks before anyone’s even thought about an online check in. I don’t know why I do it, I love surprises and I love stags. I just can’t seem to hold it together when the pressures on or when the pints are slipping down.  The only consolation I can offer is that I’ve suffered for it over the years. I’ve drunk more chilli vodka than anyone should have to and I’ve felt the wrath of many an angered best man. All I can say is that whether the stag knows where he’s going or not, he’s still going to be over the moon that a group of his bestest buds have booked time off work, and spent money they haven’t got dressing up as Nuns just for him. That’s something that will even dull the blow of finding out you will be spending your last weekend of bachelorhood in Derby.

Ok, nothing will dull that blow but you get my point yeah?


Times have changed since your parents generation. Choosing a best man was once a very cut and dried decision, usually the groom would have a straight choice between his oldest friend from childhood and his closest or only brother. Nowadays people tend to move around a lot more, lose touch with old friends and strike up intense relationships with people in university or in the workplace. This can make choosing the best man very difficult as it often pits two people in direct competition. These days it is not uncommon for a groom to choose two or more best man as he does not want to alienate any of his closest friends by making them feel second best.

If you find yourself as one of two best men it can make things a little difficult if you dont really know each other. It is not uncommon for some really competitive guys to try and out do the other best man with a speech, completely take over the organisation of the stag or (even worse) ignore their duties altogether and mope around feeling slighted that they weren’t chosen as a clear favourite.

Sometimes in this situation it can be tempting to leave the other bloke to it and make sure that you are doing what you needed to do. However it’s important to remember whose day it is and ensure that everything is done in the best interests of the groom. If you feel there is a bit of a divide with yourself and the other best man, or perhaps with an usher, then it’s best to nip it in the bud early. Go out for a pint and get it sorted out, bond over how annoying the brides Mum is if you have to. Whatever you do, dont leave it to fester until you end up squared up to each other in a Bavarian Beer House in Norwich dressed as sailors.

Spare a thought for the groom and how difficult it would be if you had to decide your best man tomorrow. That clear image of who you thought would be passing you the rings has probably shifted over the years. It means nothing has changed in your friendships but it may well cause a lot of unwelcome friction in a time of your life that is already stressful enough. If you really dont like each other you just have to grin and bare it and deliver the goods for a man who you both really love. If things have gone this bad however, make sure you are wearing a helmet for the tossing of the bouquet!