(Credit: Michael Pettigrew/iStockphoto)

Attending a party during the winter months can help relieve some of the holiday season stress. Enjoying a meal with friends, drinking festive cocktails, wearing an ugly sweater, and listening to Mariah Carey's Christmas album on repeat can make for a great night.

If you're the one hosting the party, the planning process can be hard work. Check out these apps to ensure your soiree is fun, safe, and memorable.

1. Wunderlist

Planning your party is the first step. There's a number of task apps available in the app stores, but using Wunderlist (iOS, Android) for your party planning checklist is particularly helpful.

The app essentially voids the need to have lengthy group texts about who is responsible for what and when. With Wunderlist, your to-do list can be as detailed or simple as you want.

Any list you make syncs across platforms, so you can view your tasks wherever you are. Lists are shareable for collaboration with attendees. If someone needs more clarification, you can open the chat window.

You can organize lists into folders, set reminders, and add photos or PDFs.

(Credit: Screenshot by

SEE: 7 apps to help you decorate for the holidays

2. Potluck Hub

Potluck Hub (iOS, Android) is a great tool to consolidate your event planning in one app. Whether your party is at home or at a venue, the app can help you keep track of who's coming.

With the app, you can create an event, manage your guest list, and send party invitations to your friends from your smartphone's contacts list. As each person RSVPs, you'll get an alert. The only downside is that all your guests need to have the app to RSVP. It's possible if not everyone can (or wants) to use the app, you can simply check on names as you get responses.

The Potluck app includes a potluck feature, of course. As you add food and drinks to the menu, your guests can pick what they'll bring or add another dish.

You and your guests can talk easily in the group chat feature about any extra details. After the event, you can upload photos from your party into the app for everyone to share

(Credit: Screenshot by

3. Pinterest

A great place to start gathering decoration ideas is Pinterest (iOS, Android). The has tons of DIY holiday decor that are perfect for a party on a budget. You can grab some inspiration from other people's projects or find a step-by-step tutorial.

If you search "Holiday Decorations" the site generates dozens of ways to spruce up your rooms. Tapping an image can link to an article like The Top 12 Christmas Centerpieces, for example. The site also has great ideas if you're celebrating Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or Winter Solstice.

Across the top of the screen, Pinterest gives you other suggestions to narrow your searches like cheap decorations, outside decorations, and projects for kids.

(Credit: Screenshot by

4. Secret Santa App

Gift-giving is probably one of the more expensive parts of the holidays. Big family, offices, and friend groups often turn to Secret Santa or gift swapping games, like Dirty Santa or White Elephant.

If you're gifting on a budget, you should check out the Secret Santa app. If everyone agrees to the terms, you'll just need to get everyone's email address.

After you add the gift stipulations -- like price, where the exchange happens, and deadline -- tap Send and the app will assign a Secret Santa to each user.

A perk about this app is that everyone doesn't need to have the app to participate. The app doesn't save emails and deletes addresses after 30 days.

(Credit: Screenshot by

5. Google Maps

If you're planning to go out for your holiday party, the challenge of figuring out a place everyone agrees on commences. Google Maps (iOS, Android) rolled out its Explore tab in August to help.

Explore sorts local eateries, bars, and places of interest into categories like Cheap Drinks, Sports Bars, and Coffee Shops. When you long-press a venue, you can add it to a short list.

The short list is shareable so you and your friends can vote on the best spot to have your holiday party.

(Credit: Screenshot by

6. Music

Sometimes people complain about holiday music, especially when the radio stations start immediately after Thanksgiving. But listening to your favorite holiday tunes is one of the best ways to get into the seasonal spirit.

Music streaming apps will generally recommend holiday stations, albums or playlists after December starts.

Whether you use Spotify (iOS, Android), Apple Music (iOS, Android), Google Play Music (iOS, Android), or Pandora (iOS, Android), find your favorite songs and connect to your smart home device so the house is filled with music.

Spotify (Credit: Screenshot by

7. Bar Notes

A good cocktail is a great addition to any party. If you download the Bar Notes app (iOS), you can try out your mixology skills.

Bar Notes is a drink recipe site for people to find, add, and share their favorite concoctions. Whether you're just looking for some simple cocktails or more holiday-themed drinks, Bar Notes has almost everything.

The app lists the perfect ways to serve a Holly Jolly Cocktail, Brandy Alexanders, or embellish the traditional eggnog.

(Credit: Screenshot by

8. Heads up

What's a party without a few fun games? Heads Up (iOS, Android) is a digital version of the "Who Am I?" charades game.

One player holds their phone, screen facing out, to their forehead. The app displays a celebrity's name, a movie, an animal, or accent that the other players must act out. If they act it out well enough, you'll guess right.

Sometimes it's more fun to watch your friends make the attempt. Heads Up films the other players trying to help you guess to save or share.

The app includes 18 themed decks to choose from.

(Credit: Screenshot by

9. Off Limits

The Off Limits app works like Taboo. Players have to guess as many words as possible without saying the forbidden ones. Each card has about five words that are off limits.

The game mixes in elements of Charades, as you can act out a word.

Off Limits has multiple card decks and categories like animals, food, celebrities, travel, and more.

(Credit: Screenshot by


At the end of the night, it's important that everyone gets home safe. Ridesharing apps like Uber (iOS, Android) or Lyft (iOS, Android) are available in most areas.

If your group has too much to drink, the venue doesn't have much parking, or you just don't feel like driving, opting for transportation app can be an option.

Depending on your party plans, you can use UberEats to get dinner.

Uber (Credit: Screenshot by

FOLLOW on Twitter for all the latest app news.

Also see

Shelby is an Associate Writer for CNET's She served as Editor in Chief for the Louisville Cardinal newspaper at the University of Louisville. She interned as Creative Non-Fiction Editor for Miracle Monocle literary magazine. Her work appears in Glass Mountain Magazine, Bookends Review, Soundings East, and on Her cat, Puck, is the best cat ever.