Who doesn't love a good welcome bag? Typically comprised for out-of-town guests or for destination weddings, welcome bags give guests a few trinkets and treats to show your appreciation. Whether you're putting together welcome bags for out-of-town guests or the entire guest list, they really set the tone for the rest of the wedding experience. With a unique and fun mix of items, guests are sure to get into the spirit quickly and get excited for the festivities to come.
The great thing about welcome bags is that you can easily put together your own (especially with the help of your bridal party) and have them waiting for guests upon their arrival, a great way for them to be greeted after traveling.
We've rounded up ten important items to include in your welcome bags, and from local favorites to handwritten notes, we've got you covered.
1. Wedding Essentials
Trust us, your guests will thank you later for including the essentials. It's a good idea to include things like lip balm, mints, band-aids, a sewing kit, Advil or another pain reliever and stain remover. These items will make sure your guests are good to go in case of any last-minute emergencies (or morning after headaches).
2. Your Favorite Snacks
Feed your guests' appetites with a carefully curated selection of your and your significant other's favorite snacks. From sweet treats to salty bites, make sure to include all your favorites. Guests are sure to enjoy your selections and learn about your favorites while munching away.
3. A Personalized Bag
A customized bag is an adorable and useful way to package your welcome bags. With nearly endless possibilities for design and colors, there are countless ways to make a unique bag that guests will find themselves using for years after. Swag Bags Co. offers customers a way to personalize their tote bags with a range of cute styles, perfect for filling with goodies to greet your guests. We're also seeing lots of couples opt for burlap bags over the traditional tote which also make for a stylish accessory.
4. Something to Get the Party Started
Set the tone for a fun weekend by getting the party started early with some party pleasers in your welcome bags. You can opt for classic mini champagne bottles or choose your personal small bottle favorites to feature in your bags, either way, guests are guaranteed to enjoy the treat. Make sure to include a bottle opener if necessary! If you're not including alcohol in your wedding, think about other party treats like caffeine and mocktails which are also total crowd pleasers and will keep guests satiated.
5. A Local Treat
What better way to pay homage to the location of your wedding than with local goodies from the area? Whether it's local craft beer or artisan honey, there are endless options to support local businesses and find a meaningful gift for your welcome bags. Putting in local items is also a great way to help guests learn about the locale and get familiar with the area you've chosen for your wedding and what it means to you.
6. Personalized Map of the Area
Work with your significant other to create a completely personalized map of the area for guests (including easy directions to key spots). You can feature your favorite local spots, meaningful locations and tourist attractions guests might enjoy. Lots of graphic designers work with couples to embed a map into their invitation suite, which is also a fun option. In many ways, you and your significant other are playing host for your guests, and making sure they have a fulfilling experience is key (especially for out of town loved ones).
7. Weather Accommodations
Make sure your guests are prepared for whatever weather conditions might be incoming. For warmer weather opt for sunscreen, aloe vera, a fan and sunglasses to wear during the event. For colder weddings, hand warmers, umbrellas and wraps may be necessary. Make sure to at least have a weather plan for the day-of if you don't want to include anything specific in your welcome bags.
8. Handwritten Notes
What's better than a meaningful handwritten note? Adding in a handwritten note thanking guests for attending your wedding is not only a meaningful gesture but a perfect addition to your welcome bags. Make your guests feel as appreciated as they are by telling them with a personalized card waiting for them upon arrival. It's super cute to see notes at the wedding receptions as well and handwritten cards after the event, but having them greet your guests is truly the perfect intro to your wedding weekend or day.
9. A Water Bottle or Tumbler
Go for a more sustainable option than plastic water bottles and opt for reusable bottles or tumblers. To coordinate with your wedding design, choose a hue that matches your color palette at the wedding or opt for a personalized logo. Swell has chic and sleek water bottles that are a perfect fit for a wedding welcome bag and has customization options and a range of colors and styles. Tumblers, beer mugs and other options are also great things to include that will actually be used after your wedding.
10. Wedding Itinerary (Duh)
If there's one essential for people to get upon arrival, it's your wedding itinerary. Make sure to include all the exciting festivities you have planned in your itinerary and list locations, times and dress codes if desired. If you want to opt for a more high-tech option, couples can opt to create a custom QR code guests can scan to take them to a corresponding website or digital page. This is another chance to work with a graphic designer or online company to design something that is a showcase of your style and vision.