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Do We Really Need to Give Guests Welcome Gifts?

Elaborate gift bags and baskets seem to be everywhere right now, but what if it's not in the budget for you?

Contributing Writer
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Photography by: Rensche Mari

Welcome bags, gift boxes, and baskets full of goodies are often doled out as a way to welcome wedding guests staying in hotels and resorts near the venue. Yet, as any couple that's planned a wedding can attest, the cost of those treats adds up quickly. If welcome gifts are something you're considering taking off your to-do list, here are a few things to think through before making your final decision.

 

Related: Are Wedding Favors Still Necessary?

 

Revisit your priorities and make the decision from there.

If your top three wedding priorities were attire, great food, and good music, it's safe to assume that welcome gifts would be pretty low on your list of important details. If you're struggling to make your top three priorities work within your budget, it may be best to skip welcome gifts and devote those funds towards big-day elements you care about more.

 

If your decision is driven by waste, there are options that might be better for you.

Extravagant welcome bags produce a lot of unnecessary waste, whether in packaging that goes in the garbage quickly or in the items guests leave behind and don't consume. The best solution is to simplify. If your wedding is taking place at a vineyard, send a half bottle of wine to each guest's room at check-in with a welcome note attached. Not only does this combination draw attention to the important note, but also your guests will likely drink the wine during the course of their stay.

 

It doesn't have to be over-the-top.

If your goal is to create a photo-worthy welcome gift, go right ahead and make it exactly what you want it to be. But it's important to note that welcome gifts don't have to be fussy. Something as simple as a small basket of local peaches and a welcome booklet is just as likely to be appreciated by your guests as a lavish collection of sweet and salty treats and hangover remedies.

 

If you're not giving welcome gifts, make sure you've given out all the necessary information guests need for the weekend.

Welcome bags are usually a great place to slip in a note or packet of information about the weekend's festivities. If you've decided not to distribute bags, boxes, or treats and you still need to get information to guests, you can have a small welcome booklet or note sent to each guest's hotel room or handed out when they check in. It's also helpful to duplicate this information on your wedding website if you have one.