You have planned an amazing party that all your friends will attend, and it will feature great food and a few party rentals. Unfortunately, an unexpected event occurred, and you need to cancel said party.

These 8 tips will help you deal with this particular situation.

1. Decide whether the party should be cancelled or rescheduled

Depending on the reason why you are thinking about cancelling your party, you might be able to reschedule it later instead of cancelling it completely. For example, if a storm is coming up on the day you had planned a fun party outside, you can try to make it happen next week instead.

2. Figure out what you will say to your guests

Your guests will probably be disappointed, especially if you had promised them a great party with party rentals and games. Take a moment to figure out what you will tell them. If the party has to be cancelled because of an illness, decide how much information you should share with your guests.

3. Notify your guests as soon as possible

It’s very important to notify your guests as soon as possible, so they won’t show up for a party that won’t happen. Be sure to call them, to send them a text message or an email to let them know your party has been cancelled.

4. Be ready to answer questions

Some of your guests will surely ask you a few questions about the reason why the party was cancelled. If it concerns a delicate issue, such as an illness or the death of a loved one, you have the right to simply tell them you don’t feel like discussing the details with them.

5. Let everyone know about the next party

If you are thinking about rescheduling your party next week, next month, or later, be sure to let your guests know about it. Maybe they will be disappointed by the cancellation, but they will still have a party to look forward to.

6. Get in touch with your party rentals company

If you had rented inflatable sports games, a children’s bouncer or a photobooth, get in touch with your party rentals company and ask about their policies for cancellation or rescheduling. You might end up losing your deposit, or you might be able to get a refund.

7. Get in touch with your catering service

If you had hired a catering service, you should also get in touch with them as soon as possible to let them know your party is cancelled. You don’t want them to deliver dozens of plates at your door if you will be alone to eat them… or do you?

8. Decide what you should do with anything you had purchased

If you had purchased any decorations, food and drinks for your party, you might be able to get a refund for most of those items if you still have your receipts. If you can’t get a refund on the food you purchased, you could donate it to someone who needs it.