Sunday, July 20, 2008

Guest Welcome Bags

In the recent months, I've received a growing number of questions regarding help with guest welcome bags so I wanted to share some of my ideas with my readers. Guest welcome bags are a GREAT way to make your out of town guests feel welcomed and appreciated. Your guests travel from all over and often times spend a substantial amount of time and money just getting to your wedding so it's a nice gesture to show them that you appreciate them. When deciding on what to put in your welcome bags, try putting yourself in their shoes and decide what would be most important to you if you were traveling a great distance for someones wedding. Would it be a map of the area? Or a means of cooling off on a hot summer day such as a bottle of water or fan?

Here's a list of some goodies to put into your welcome bags:

  • Map of the area with directions to ceremony/reception locations
  • Schedule of the wedding weekend (including rehearsal dinner arrangements if invited)
  • Pamphlets/brochures of things to do around the area (beside your wedding)
  • Bottled water
  • Gourmet chocolates/cookies
  • Mints
  • Tissues (for those tears of joy!)
  • Fans (especially for an outdoor wedding or a church with no a/c)
  • Post cards from the area (especially if this is their first time visiting)
  • Popular local snacks (if they wont make a mess!)
  • A small souvenir related to the area (i.e. sports team key chain)
  • Disposable camera

If you're having a tropical/beach destination wedding, try filling your welcome bags with these:

  • Sunscreen/suntan lotion
  • Beach towel
  • Chapstick with SPF
  • Guidebook to the area
  • Flip-flops

My personal advice for filling your welcome bags is NOT to go to the dollar store, but to instead try a bulk store like Sam's Club or Costco. You can generally get better quality items at these types of stores instead of a dollar store. Whatever you decide to fill your bags with, do try to remember that your guests will have to carry all of this with them - try not to make it too heavy and don't over think it. A few thoughtful items will go a long way with your guests! :)

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