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Whether you’re trying to pivot from in-person to a virtual party or looking for ways to make your party stand out in the virtual crowd...we’re here to help. For most, company holiday parties have relied on a pretty standard formula: venue + food + drinks + a little entertainment. In a remote and hybrid world, it’s time to reimagine holiday parties from the ground up. Luckily, there are lots of ways that you can throw a virtual holiday party that feels just as special as an in-person event and creates an opportunity for your teammates to reconnect and celebrate together.
1. First, decide what matters to your team.
Instead of jumping right into the logistics of planning an event, start with the bigger picture. Who do you want to show up for the party, and what motivates them? How do you want them to feel about the event -- do you want them to laugh, shed a happy tear, get to know their coworkers a little better? What milestones are worth celebrating while you’re together? Starting here will ensure that your holiday party is a meaningful team experience, rather than a check-the-box annual tradition.
2. Get your team involved in the planning.
For a virtual holiday party, literally anything is possible...that’s the beauty of the internet! It’s a good problem to have, but the limitless options can feel a little overwhelming. Let your teammates and attendees guide the way by getting them involved in the upfront planning. Invite them to vote or fill out a survey to help you narrow down your options. Do they want to sit back and be entertained? Do they want to eat and drink “together?” Do they want to do something silly and fun? All of the above?! Getting a sense of everyone’s preferences helps your teammates feel valued. This is also a great time to ask for preferences around date and time of day to make sure you can get maximum participation. Luckily, Boombox made this step super easy by offering a free survey tool that you can use! Simply create an account to use the tool.
3. Pick an event that feels truly special.
Newsflash: Just because your holiday party is virtual doesn’t mean that it has to be lame. In fact, we’re here to tell you that your holiday party can be *EVEN BETTER* when it’s virtual. The trick is creating an experience that feels like a real treat. Because we spend much of our workdays on Zoom these days, you’ll need to choose an activity that feels wildly different from your day to day. This is one of the reasons it’s best to stay away from a simple “Virtual Happy Hour” holiday party. It’s been done way too many times, it doesn’t feel meaningfully different from all of your other daily meetings (except for the drinking part, hopefully), and it doesn’t do anything to bring your team closer. Think outside the box with a wreath making class, magic show, or trivia game. Or you could elevate the typical happy hour idea with an interactive wine tasting, cooking class, or cocktail-making contest. Better yet, combine multiple activities into a holiday-palooza. (Magic & mixology anyone?) Boombox has you covered with professionally-vetted, high-quality virtual holiday events for every budget level!
4. Send a physical invite.
Bridge the gap between the online world and physical world with a good ol’ fashioned party invitation! This helps create some buzz, makes it feel special, and gives you an opportunity for a beautifully branded moment. Along with the basic RSVP requests, build some extra excitement with a festive dress code. You can also use this time to invite plus ones and family members, which is another big perk of a virtual event!
5. Use expert facilitators and hosts.
Flawlessly facilitating a big group (or any sized group, really) and guiding your team through a perfect holiday party isn’t easy. So why don’t you leave it to the professionals, so you can sit back and enjoy? We recommend working with an event team that has tons of experience running virtual events and acting as the master of ceremonies. That’s why all of Boombox’s virtual holiday events are hosted by a professional who helps ensure a flawless event.
6. Make it interactive.
Remember...this is a virtual holiday party, not a virtual holiday webinar! And parties are all about interaction. Start by choosing an event that is naturally interactive, like a cooking class or game, then add in extra opportunities for people to connect with each other. You could have small breakout rooms where people can mingle if you have a big group, or you reserve one portion of your event for a virtual Ugly Holiday Sweater contest or a White Elephant gift swap. (Tip: Ask everyone bring their wrapped gift to the event, take care of swapping and unwrapping virtually, then ship to recipients after the event!) Whatever you decide to do, make sure everyone has the opportunity to engage when and how they want to.
7. Carve out time for gratitude.
We’re willing to bet that your team has accomplished a lot this year, and under some not-so-ideal circumstances. Use your holiday party as a chance to recognize the hard work that made it all possible. Consider ways to bring it all into perspective -- maybe you could share video shoutouts that teammates submit for one another, a collection of incredible customer feedback to share with the team, or a recap of the biggest wins from the year. It’s a great way to end the year on a high note and keep your remote and hybrid team feeling engaged.
8. Gifts!
Who doesn’t love a gift?? Gifts are another sure-fire way to make your event feel extra special. Whether your gifts arrive along with the invite, get tucked into the party supplies sent to each recipient, or arrive right after the event, gifts are an opportunity to show your teammates your true appreciation. Just like planning your event, thinking outside the box goes a long way. (Nobody has “another branded fleece vest” on their wishlist this year, we promise.) If you’re looking for inspiration, check out Boombox’s holiday gift guide.
We hope these tips help you see the endless possibilities of a virtual holiday party. When planned with purpose and creativity, these team celebrations help us experience the true meaning of the holiday season -- connecting with the people that matter, sharing our love and appreciation, and creating a little extra joy for everyone around us. Happy planning!
Need help planning your virtual holiday party? Book an event in minutes or chat with our concierge team to start planning your event today.

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