Wedding welcome bags can come in all shapes and sizes. You may be opting for a sweet gift for your out-of-town guests, or you're hoping to add an extra special touch for those traveling a distance for your destination wedding. You may have even chosen to put together a welcome bag for everyone attending your wedding.
But it's important to remember that welcome bags aren't just there for show. They provide a glimpse of the festivities to come—allowing you and your partner to effectively welcome your guests and highlight the most important parts of the weekend. Plus, they provide a thoughtful, personalized package of goodies.
While a typical welcome bag consists of basic wedding-day essentials like water bottles and mints, couples are finding ways to incorporate their personality into the details. Highlighting a locale's unique food and beverages, adding in helpful maps and guides, or pampering your guests with a few thoughtful touches can go such a long way.
Consider adding a personalized note or customized gift, such as an embroidered handkerchief, to each bag to truly make each recipient feel welcome.
Welcome bags allow you to get creative and mix and match complementary items like olive oil and bread or even whiskey and chocolate. Plus, they provide the perfect opportunity to tuck a sweet note inside letting your guests know just how thrilled you are to have them with you. And while there are so many options to put together a unique welcome bag, it all boils down to finding items that both you and your partner are excited to share with your guests
Read on to see 22 of our favorite ideas for wedding welcome bags to inspire your own.
Add a Personal Touch
Having an intimate wedding means you can really splurge on the smaller guest list. Personalizing gift bags and favors with each guest's name will have everyone in attendance feeling extra special.
Be Travel Friendly
Factor in guests who may be traveling to the wedding location when curating welcome bags—they'll need to take everything home with them, after all. "I obsessed over the contents because I wanted everything to be personal, useful (not wasteful), and suitcase-friendly," recalls bride Grace of her jute totes filled with scrumptious snacks, a Turkish beach towel, and hand sanitizer.
Serve Up Your Favorite Snacks
Make sure all of those snacks you're incorporating are meaningful. We love the idea of serving up a huge array of you and your partner's absolute favorites for guests to enjoy.
Keep It Small
Keeping it small and simple doesn't mean it's any less special. We love the idea of using miniature bags with just a few sentimental items tucked inside.
Don't miss the beach essentials! Packing sunscreen, a fan, and sunglasses into a nautical-themed bag can go such a long way for guests. This is the perfect option for those hosting a beachside destination wedding.
Provide City Guides
If you have guests coming in from out of the area, pop a guide to the city in each welcome bag. Of course, adding in a few snacks and essentials will make it that much better.
Commission an Illustration
Why not add a little bit of art to the mix? If you or your partner love to draw or paint, adding an illustration could be the perfect touch. Or, commission a custom piece to showcase your ceremony's setting.
Stick With Your Color Scheme
Consider keeping your wedding's color palette going, even with your welcome bags. Opt for meaningful items that are packaged in similar colors for a cohesive look.
Include a Hangover Kit
If you're anticipating some heavy imbibing over the weekend, provide your guests with a quick cure. A hangover kit with eye drops, aspirin, and other thoughtful necessities will go a long way.
Opt for Simple Paper Bags
Don't judge a welcome bag by its size. Opt for custom stamped paper bags filled with a personal note and a fan for a smaller, intimate ceremony.
Create a Display
While some choose to leave welcome bags tucked into guests' hotel rooms or place them atop their chairs, this couple made quite the display of their goods. "I wanted to do the welcome bags myself because I wanted them to be exploding with personalized things that all of our guests knew represented Brad and me," says the bride.
Make It Sweet
If you and your partner are always drawn to the sweet stuff, there's no shame in celebrating it. Add in treats like saltwater taffy and kettle corn to gift your guests a scrumptious surprise.
Embrace Fresh Fruits
It doesn't all have to be snacks and sweets. Add your state's most recognizable fruits like Florida oranges to provide a fresh taste of home.
Celebrate With Tea Time
What's cuter than tea for two? For a smaller ceremony, you can really go all out on your welcome bags or boxes. Embrace a love for specialty teas with two cute mugs packaged in a beautiful box.
Incorporate Local Beer
If you and your partner are craft beer lovers, share your passion with guests. Incorporate a few favorite brews along with a bottle opener as a special thank you.
Stick With Simple and Fresh
Embrace a farmers market vibe with a simple grocery bag. Add a custom note and a few pieces of fresh fruit for guests to enjoy all weekend long.
Embrace Local Fare
Destination weddings come with so many unique ways to celebrate the locale you're visiting. Bring together a little gift package for your guests, such as olive oil for an Italian wedding.
Make It Indulgent
Go all out with your favorite indulgent sweets. We love the idea of incorporating cookies and chocolate for guests to treat themselves.
Include Your Itinerary
Of course, wedding welcome bags or boxes can serve a purpose as well. It's not just all about the treats. Be sure to include a beautiful printout of your itinerary so your guests don't miss a beat.
Celebrate Your Pet
Incorporating a furry best friend into the festivities? Celebrate with custom cookies or other treats that feature your fluffy companion.
Don't Forget the Welcome Note
Adding a welcome note for your nearest and dearest will make any wedding bag all the more special. Pen or print a note from you and your partner, thanking guests for their attendance.
What should you put in your wedding welcome bags?
You can fill your welcome bags with everything from wedding-day essentials to customized gifts as a way of thanking guests for their attendance. You can also include snacks, beverages, and souvenirs that are relevant to the wedding locale—this is especially useful for out-of-town guests.
Who pays for the wedding welcome bags?
If you and your partner are footing the bill for your wedding, then it's assumed that you will also be responsible for covering the cost of the welcome bags. Alternatively, if you're splitting the wedding costs with your parents, then be sure to ask ahead to see if they'd be willing to cover the additional expense.
For destination weddings, what else should be included in welcome bags?
Show your guests that you appreciate them by including everything from practical items like sunscreen and sunglasses (if it's a tropical destination) to local maps and guides, and even a keepsake canvas tote that can double as a memento of your day.