What to Include in Wedding Welcome Bags: A Handy Checklist

What to Include in Wedding Welcome Bags: A Handy Checklist

Wedding welcome bags or baskets for your guests are such a thoughtful idea, particularly if you have visitors coming from abroad, or guests travelling to your destination wedding. A longtime favourite among our USA couples, welcome totes or guest goodie bags are becoming more and more popular in Ireland and the UK, especially for those welcoming smaller numbers in private hire venues or, for those having a full wedding weekend. So here, we’re sharing some ideas for what to put in your wedding welcome bags or baskets, along with our top tips for creating a gorgeous and highly personal swag bag for your guests.

Wedding Welcome basket Image by ELIZABETH MESSINA PHOTOGRAPHY

What are Wedding Welcome Bags?

Wedding welcome bags are essentially a goodie bag for your guests, most commonly your out-of-town guests. They’re a great way to say, “Hello, we’re delighted to have you with us!” and to thank your guests for making the journey to your wedding. As well as little treats, wedding welcome bags often contain important information about your celebration and the local area, so your guests don’t miss a thing.

Wedding Welcome Bag Image by Molly Carr

What to Put in your Wedding Welcome Bags: A Handy Checklist

As with all of our checklists, the following run-down is designed to be customised. In short, take the ideas you like and ditch the rest!

  • Water – adding a custom label would be a cute touch!
  • Sweet or savoury snacks – cookies, popcorn, crisps or sweets are a great idea, particularly when they’re exclusive to the area (think Tayto in Ireland, shortbread biscuits in Scotland, a stick of rock by the seaside, etc.)
  • Fresh fruit – energy-giving apples, oranges and bananas are the easiest to pack in a goodie bag.
  • Mints
Wedding Welcome Bag Design by Lauryn Prattes Events | Image by Abby Jiu
  • Snipes of Champagne or miniature bottles of local alcohol or cans of locally brewed craft beer.
  • Weather essentials – for warm weather weddings, these might be mini bottles of SPF, fans, after sun or bug spray, for other climates, ponchos, hand warmers and umbrellas are a good shout.
  • A mini hangover, or wellness kit – this can include things like painkillers, eye masks and a vitamin tablet or sachet.
  • Bandaids (blisters happen!)
Wedding Welcome bag by Marigold & Grey
  • Flip flops or slippers
  • A beauty or grooming product like soap or lip balm.
  • Something that reflects your personalities or represents a beloved pastime of yours – a sachet of tea, a deck of cards or a candle are all great choices. You could add little tags on each that say “Bride’s Favourite” and “Groom’s Favourite” to tie it all together for guests.
  • A small toy or activity book if they’ve travelled with children.
  • A postcard, fridge magnet or other local souvenir from the area.
Wedding Welcome Box by A Signature Welcome
  • An itinerary for your wedding weekend – don’t forget to include your wedding hashtag if you have one. We love the wedding newspaper trend!
  • A guidebook or map of the area – some couples even create their own, and include their favourite local hotspots.
  • A thank-you card or note – guests will really appreciate a simple note to let them know how thrilled you are to have them.
  • A pretty bag, box, basket or tote to store everything in – some couples have their own canvas tote bags printed, others source simple carrier bags and tie gift tags around the handles.
Wedding Welcome Basket Image by KT MERRY

Tips for Putting Together your Wedding Welcome Bags, Boxes or Baskets

  1. Enlist your bridal party or family members to help you pack and distribute bags to your venue or hotel. We love the idea of guests finding their welcome bags in their rooms when they arrive! Remember, each venue will have a delivery policy – they can provide bags to guests at check-in or put them in guest’s rooms before their arrival. Make sure to check with your venue, or wedding planner on this.
  2. Keep it simple and remember that you don’t have to fill the whole thing – your guests don’t want to lug a bunch of extra stuff home with them.
  3. When planning your quantities, it’s normally one bag per couple (meaning usually one bag per room).
  4. Make sure favours or gifts are suitable for travelling guests to take home with them. If they won’t be able to fit it in their luggage, or they won’t be able to take it through security, ditch it from the list! The one exception to this rule is small food, drink and cosmetic items – your guests will likely polish them off during their trip.
  5. Consider each individual guest while packing your wedding welcome bags, and ask your helpers to do the same. For example, alcohol won’t be appropriate for all guests.
  6. Make them personal! A little touch makes a big difference, so it’s worth adding name tags and handwritten note if you’ve got the time to do so.
  7. Upgrade the bags – think linen totes, baskets, farmers market totes, or chic boxes so your guests will be able to reuse them later.

Looking for budget-friendly wedding favour ideas? You’ll find our favourites right here.

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