Weddings have evolved so much recently that gone are the days of guests just arriving, finding their seats, and attending the wedding. Instead, especially for more nontraditional weddings, the presentation is changing. Since the bride and groom are unable to greet everyone as they arrive for the wedding, a great option now is a welcome bag. These also work great for welcoming guests to a long wedding weekend if it’s a destination wedding or many guests are coming from out of town. Some welcome bag must-haves include some sort of bag, as well as some goodies.

We’ve put together a list of some of our favorite welcome bag must-haves. You want to make sure that you’re giving your guests items they can actually use, as well as a bag that they can use over and over again, rather than just something that is a one-time use.

Tote bags


These are great options as they can be used over and over again for a day trip to the beach or a reusable shopping bag. You can add a cute saying that relates to the wedding, but try not to get too personalized besides that. We recommend sticking to a general phrase or saying rather than a specific wedding hashtag or personalization.

Local snacks

The whole bag shouldn’t be full of snacks, but you may want to include one or two for your guests to enjoy. This is a great way to really bring the state into the event. Just make sure you know about any dietary restrictions or allergies first.

Include water

You can add a custom label if you wish, but your guests will appreciate not having to buy as much water from the hotel restaurant or having to run to the store to get some.

Seasonal items

If you are getting married on the beach, include custom sunglasses and some sunscreen for your guests to help keep them protected from the sun. For a winter wedding out in the snow, include some tea bags or a pair of mittens for everyone to help them stay warm.

Guidebook or map

If your guests are not familiar with the area, include some information to help them explore the town. If there are good hiking parks, include a map to that or highlight popular attractions they’ll want to visit while they are here.

Hangover kits

You want your guests to enjoy themselves, so include some Emergen-C, as well as some pain pills, to help them enjoy the rest of their time after the wedding reception.

A small first-aid kit

You can never be too careful, and this is great to give guests a small kit featuring band-aids, stomach meds, pain meds, and even a stain remover. When guests are traveling, they may not bring everything they’ll need for your big day.

Include a thank you note.

Your guests have traveled and taken time off work to celebrate with you, so make sure you share your appreciation with a special note that expresses your appreciation of their attendance.


These welcome bag must-haves are fun, and practical, ensuring that your guests will appreciate them. There are several ways to get these in your guest’s hands, you can leave one in each chair, and offer assigned seating, or you can have a table with them at the entrance, just make sure to put the guest’s names on them. Another option is to have them ready and waiting in the rooms before your guests arrive. The hotel will be more than happy to work with you to arrange that.