Surprise Party Hack? Use a temporary phone number to keep it a secret

September 6, 2023

This Surprise Party Hack Helps You Keep a Secret

I recently celebrated a birthday, and while I didn’t have a surprise party (I flat-out refused), I did have a bunch of family members and friends working together on a very special surprise gift.

But my family wasn’t the best at keeping the secret. (Bless their hearts.)

We’re a family of four, and our phones are always nearby. So whenever there was a message about my surprise gift in a group chat, I would hear three separate pings as each family member got the notification. Oops!

Naturally, I wondered why the heck all three of them were getting messages from a thread that clearly wasn’t our regular family thread. I looked away as soon as I realized they were trying to keep a secret about surprise birthday party plans and gifts, but it made me laugh to see how difficult it was for them to keep a secret from me.

It’s hard to hide texts, messaging threads, and social media DMs

If you’re planning a surprise party for someone living in your house, or someone you just spend a lot of time with, they probably see your phone lying around and occasionally look at the previews of messages that pop in, right?

You can’t plan a surprise party for someone if you’re paranoid about leaving your phone unlocked in case they catch a glimpse of one of the messages. (And they might think you’re up to something *no good* if you start acting suspicious and refusing to let them see your phone.)

If you’re trying to plan a surprise party for someone close to you, you might not be able to use your regular channels.

  • iMessage will give you away quickly, because iPhone users almost always have these notifications on
  • Text messages to your regular phone number will probably result in a cheery PING when they arrive
  • WhatsApp messages likely have notifications on, too (and the surprise party recipient might see them pop in)
  • Facebook Messenger loudly announces new messages in the app and within Facebook

Surprise party hack: Use a temporary phone number

Instead of relying on your regular phone number or messaging apps, why not get a brand-new app (Hushed) and set up a temporary phone number that you’ll only use for planning the surprise party?

You can sneakily reach out to everyone via phone or text and prevent the party ‘recipient’ from seeing what you’re doing.

  • Inviting friends and family to the surprise party
  • Collecting surprise party RSVPs so you know who’s coming
  • Reaching out to vendors about party plans
  • Communicating with the surprise party venue
  • Ordering a cake, food, drinks, linens, etc.
  • Scheduling party entertainment and coordinating the details

A temporary phone number from Hushed starts at $2.99, and you can chuck it as soon as the surprise party’s over. (Unless you’ve gotten used to having a throwaway phone number and want to keep it, of course.)

Get a dedicated phone number for planning a surprise party

If you need to call and text in secret to make sure your surprise party is really a surprise? We’ve got you!

1. Download the free Hushed app

2. Sign up for an account

3. Choose a phone number (300+ area codes)

4. Pick a phone package (starting at $2.99)

5. Secretly begin planning the party, using your own temporary phone number

Shhh! Keep a secret with Hushed

How difficult is it going to be to keep the surprise party a secret? Well, that depends on (A) if you live with the person, (B) if the person has regular access to your phone, and (C) how snoopy they might be.

  • LEVEL 1 SECRECY: Close your Hushed app when you aren’t using it, and most people won’t even notice it on your screen
  • LEVEL 2 SECRECY: Turn off your Hushed notifications so there won’t be any pings if you get calls or texts on the surprise party hotline
  • LEVEL 3 SECRECY: Change the icon of your Hushed app, turn off Hushed notifications, and just re-open the Hushed app when you want to check RSVPs or party details
  • LEVEL 4 SECRECY: Someone snooping on your phone? Delete the Hushed app entirely, and re-download it whenever you have space to check on your surprise party phone number
  • LEVEL 5 SECRECY: Keep your Hushed account logged in on a totally separate device, like an old cell phone you never use. Keep the phone hidden away and powered off, and only turn it on when you need to check your surprise party hotline

With a little sneakiness, a lot of help from your fellow secret-keeping guests, and a temporary phone number, you can throw a surprise party that’s actually a surprise.

Choose a second phone number

+ Unlimited calling

+ Unlimited texting

Only $7.99 $4.99/month

Get started!

1 Share
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap