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Hosting Safe Young Adult Parties


group of young adults at a party


Whether still living at home or out on their own, your young adult may want to throw a party. By planning how the party will go ahead of time to planning rides home after the party your young adult can reduce the risks of harm with these five hosting a safe party tips.

1. Think it over

Before deciding to host a party, think about social responsibility and talk to others who might be affected by the party (e.g., neighbours). Talk about how many and who to invite, activities, and noise levels, whether there’ll be alcohol or other drugs present, and what the risks are. Be sure you address any concerns and talk about them in your planning.

2. Find ways to moderate drinking

If guests are going to be drinking (or using other drugs), think about ways to promote moderation and avoid harm. Consider:

  • the legal issues and consequences
  • having a bartender
  • encouraging guests not to mix alcohol and drugs 
  • not pushing drinks on guests or rushing to refill their glasses 
  • a plan to stop serving alcohol one to two hours before the anticipated end of the party

3. Plan the environment

Think about the comfort and safety of guests. Avoid unnecessary crowding and ensure clear access to washrooms and exits. Design places for people to sit and chat.

4. Offer entertainment

It’s better when guests have fun things to do where alcohol is not the focus. Put up a dart board, card table or ping-pong table. Have a dance area. Rent a karaoke machine. Avoid drinking games.

5. Provide food and alcohol-free drinks

Provide food throughout the party. Alcohol is absorbed more slowly when people have food in their stomachs. Focus on food that is not too greasy, salty or sweet since all can increase thirst. Be sure to provide water, juice and soft drinks. You might even get creative and offer fancy “virgin” cocktails (also called “mocktails”) served in the same glasses as the alcohol versions.

6. Prepare for crises

Have a plan in place in the event something goes wrong or a guest who’s been drinking insists on driving home. If you are hosting, drink lightly if at all, so you’re able to think clearly and react quickly if a problem occurs. You might even consider enlisting a reliable friend who plans on staying sober to lend a hand.

7. Get them home safe

Ensure your guests have a safe way home. In the absence of public transit, arrange for designated drivers, a taxi service, or be prepared for overnight guests.


Alcohol-Free Drink Alternatives

Making tasty, alcohol-free drinks is an alternative you can offer. Here are a few popular options:



    • 2 oz. sour mix and a splash each of lime and orange juice


    • Blend with ice until smooth
    • Serve in a salt-rimmed glass
    • Garnish with a lime wedge

Pina Colada


    • 3 oz. pineapple juice and 2 oz. coconut cream


    • Blend with ice until smooth
    • Garnish with a pineapple wedge, whipped cream and a cherry

Strawberry Daiquiri


    • 3 oz. fresh or frozen strawberries, a splash of sour mix, and a dash of grenadine


    • Blend with ice until smooth

Resources & Links:

Here to Help: A Safe Night Out
HealthLink BC: Low Risk Drinking Guidelines

Last Updated: March 31, 2015