Post # 1
We are having a destination wedding (Vegas!) and my Fiance wants to put together welcome bags for our guests (with things like chapstick, snack, map of the area, Emergen-C packet etc). I know that a lot of people are doing this for Destination Wedding these days, and we have received them for past Destination Wedding we’ve been to.
Do you think that guests will expect them? We are giving out favours after the wedding and hosting an all drinks included bus tour of Vegas the night before the wedding so I feel like we’re doing enough, and in my experience people don’t end up using the items in the bags anyway, although it is a nice thoughtful thing to do. I’m a bit worried of the extra cost and hassle for something that might not end up being used.
Also, a lot of our guests are arriving on different days and some are staying at a different hotel, so I think it would be hard to connect with everyone to give them the bags once they arrive.
What is your opinion? Do you think it’s worth it and something the guests will appreciate, or would it be ok to just stick to the wedding favours? I’m not sure if welcome bags have become something to be expected for DWs.
Post # 3
I think they’re a nice gesture when people have had to travel to come to your wedding. We went to the two hotels our blocks were at the day before the earliest guest checked in and dropped off the bags with the conceierge. The reservations under our blocks were flagged, and they all received bags as they checked in. The bags were well-appreciated by our guests; so many people thanked us at out reception and day-after brunch.
I don’t know if they’re expected, persay, but I just think people appreciate the thought and effort a lot more than you know.
Post # 4
@sunny_days: I don’t think they are expected, but I think they are a great idea! I work at a hotel and we have handed out many bags…I’ve been jealous of some because they had nice things in them!mi would love to receive one as a guest at a Destination Wedding for sure! They don’t even have to be anything big….it’s the gesture that’s so wonderful.
Post # 5
@sunny_days: honestly I think they are a waste of money. If i want chapstick I would have already packed it, now you are giving me even more stuff to pack for the trip home.
I thought about doing this for our Destination Wedding in Vegas but was also put off when I realised that people were staying in all different hotels (due to the range of hotels available) and the fact that a lot of the hotels charged a fee to hand out the bags.
I would much rather a alcohol fuelled bus tour than a bag full of random stuff.
Post # 6
@j_jaye: I agree that Chapstick is a silly addition. In ours, we had a couple cans of soda, mini bottles of vodka and rum, water, maps of the area, lists of restaurants, some candy/granola bars, map of the metro, and hand sanitizer – basically, all things that would get consumed or left behind in the end. We tried to pick more practical things and less random toiletries we could’ve picked up at the Target trial size aisle.
Post # 7
I agree with pp…I think they’re a waste of money! Sure it’s a thoughtful gesture and polite guests will always say thank you but I really dont think they’re necessary and a lot of it will just end up left behind or never used!
OP, you are doing plenty already! I’m from the UK and went to a small Destination Wedding in NYC where the bride and groom organised a tour of the city and fab ‘big apple’ themed favoura… that was enough…I never even thought about not getting a welcome pack until now!
We are having a Destination Wedding in Italy and will leave little welcome notes for our guests arriving then have organised a welcome bbq on the first night and a boat trip on the lake for everyone. I know our family and friends will love that far more than a little bag of chapstick and handcream lol
Post # 8
Save your time and money. They aren’t necessary and certainly won’t be missed by your guests.
Post # 9
For what it’s worth – I asked a somewhat similar question and the response I got was that a favor or a welcome bag are both ways of thanking your guests for coming so it is acceptable to do one or the other.
As for my personal opinion – I think you are doing enough already 🙂 Don’t give yourself the added hassle.
Post # 10
sunny_days– If you can work it into your budget, I think its a great idea! It is a nice gesture and an easy way to thank them for coming to a destination. I also don’t think chap stick is silly! I always forget it 🙂
Post # 11
I didn’t realize they were “expected” until I showed up at my friend’s out of town wedding and DIDN’T receive one. I was a little put off, simply because me and the other bridesmaid were the only people traveling from out of town. Now, I realize being offended is silly and it’s not a necessity to do welcome bags, however, I think those types of gestures really go a long way.
My sister did it for her wedding, and they were really, truly appreciated. She put more “hangover” cure things in there, like two bottles of water, aspirin, snacks, “hair of the dog”–meaning two small bottles of alcohol. Basically these are all things that can be consumed, or you won’t feel bad leaving behind. Obviously, do not give them something large that they will have to carry on a plane or struggle to find room for, but Chapstick? Really? You throw that at the bottom of your purse or bag, don’t see how it would negativelly affect anyones life.
Break down how many people you will be having and then the next time you are out, price out how much it would be to get every out of towner a welcome bag. If it’s under a hundred, I say do it. However, in your case, it may be a little different, as you are having a Destination Wedding and you may have dozens upon dozens of out of town guests. For something that would be an added bonus, don’t break the bank.
Post # 12
A favor is a thank you for attending the wedding and a welcome bag is a thank you for traveling to a destination. We’re doing both for our guests, but only including edible items, suggestions of things to do, and a welcome letter in our disposable welcome bags. Just like w favors, edible items seem best.
Post # 13
Thank you, you’ve given me some great ideas of some alternative items to include that might be more useful. We’re having about 55 people coming to the wedding so it’s a lot of stuff to buy and pack, but we are arriving a few days before everyone so we might be able to buy the items in Vegas so we don’t have to carry them with us.
I like the idea of the “hangover kit”, I’ll try to price it and see how much it comes to. We’ve already spent more on this wedding than we originally planned (our guestlist somehow went from 25 to 60 lol), so I don’t want to spend that much more.
Post # 14
@sunny_days: It sounds like you are doing a lot for your guests already– a bus tour, wow! That will be fun. 🙂 I’m not sure you need to do welcome bags, particularly since your guests will be at a few different hotels and that will likely make it somewhat complicated to do– another detail to worry about in the few days before your wedding.
But I have been to one wedding where welcome bags were done and they were very nice to have– I took the stuff home and use it when I need to (it had included a lint roller, which was awesome because I have cats and their hair is inescapable).
If you do them, things like chapstick, a mini lint roller, mini packets of aspirin/ibuprofen, a mini thing of bandaids (super helpful for high heel-blistered feet!) and a couple of bottles of water would all probably be very much appreciated. The welcome bag I received included a lot of candy, which I threw away, but it had first aid type things also and that was nice.
But again, you are doing a lot for your guests as it is so if you don’t want to spend the money, I don’t think anyone’s actually going to be irked that they didn’t get a welcome bag.
Post # 15
We made bags and filled them with a bunch of different snacks – granola bars, fruit snacks, candy, etc. – that we picked up at Costco. While I don’t think our guests expected anything, they definitely appreciated having little things to snack on over the course of the weekend. We also decided to distribute the bags at our welcome/rehearsal dinner since it was easier.
Post # 15
I would say make sure they are useable things if you do them! I went to a family reunion and got a bag, it was nice until I realized that the majority of things inside were brochures for local tourist attractions… and since pretty much every single hour of the trip was already planned and booked, it did us ABSOLUTELY no good. 🙁