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Wedding Gift Bag Ideas for Your Out-of-town Guests

Updated on June 21, 2010

When your out-of-town wedding guests arrive at their hotel after a long day of driving or flying across the country, they will definitely appreciate a practical and creative gift bag waiting for them in their room. The options for what to put into such a gift bag are pretty much endless, so here are some great ideas that your guests will truly appreciate.

The Bag

A good place to start is to go ahead and choose the actual bag you want to use. That way, you know just how much space you have to fit all the gifts you want to include. There are about a million different choices when it comes to bags, so here are a few great ideas for any budget.

  • Personalized Gift Bags - If you have a larger budget and plenty of time before the wedding, personalized bags are a great idea. You can order them online or from a local monogram/paper store. This way, you could have a message like "Welcome to our wedding!" or "Jen and John are so Glad You Came!". Of course, if you really have a nice budget, you could have your names and the date of your wedding sewn onto a nice fabric reusable bag or even a velvet bag. A paper bag with a handle, personalized with your own message is going to cost an average of $2.00 a bag if ordered online.

  • Reusable Fabric Bag - A slightly less expensive option would be to use a non-woven reusable fabric bag. You could use your wedding colors for the color of the bag and color coordinate the gifts inside as well! If you do not put any type of monogram or message on the bag, you can find several places online, such as papermart, where you can buy these in bulk for as little as $0.59 per bag.
  • Paper Bag - If you are working on a tighter budget and would like to spend more of your money on the items inside the bag, rather than the bag itself, this is the perfect option. You can usually order colored paper bags with a twisted handle for as little as $0.31 a bag. Also, paper bags without handles are even less expensive, often found for $0.10 or less, depending on the size of the bag. With a paper bag, you can always decorate it yourself as well with stamps or markers.

Out-of-Town Gift Bag Must-Haves

No matter which bag you decide to use, there are a few items that absolutely need to be inside of it for your guests. For more ideas, be sure to also check out these tips on wedding gift bags.

A Wedding Itenerary - You want to make sure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to the where's and when's of your wedding event. A simple sheet detailing rehearsal times,meal plans, any dressing or makeup appointments, photo times and of course, the time and place of the wedding itself.

Transportation Information - You should definitely include information on the best ways to get from one place to another. Directions are necessary if your main wedding events are taking place somewhere other than the hotel. It is also possible that some guests will not have a car and will need the number for a local cab company or information on using the subway or other public transportation in the city. A local map of the area is a nice bonus, along with travel pamphlets about local attractions, local restaurants, and shopping. Ask the hotel or your travel agent for ideas, or call the local chamber of commerce for maps and ideas.

A Simple Thank You Message - Thanking your guests who have travelled a long way and probably spent quite a bit of money to attend your wedding is a must. This doesn't have to be fancy, Just a simple note or card saying, "Thank you for coming to share our special day. We're so glad you are here." is appropriate.

7 Fun Favor Ideas for Your Gift Bags

It can be really fun to come up with ideas for favors and other more personal items to fill your gift bags. While most people will not expect an extra gift, this is a fabulous way to add an extra thank you for your guests and to addd a personal touch that will surprise and please everyone. Of course, looking for wedding favors online is a full-time job, so I am including my 7 Favorite to help you get started.

My Wedding Favors . com

1. Personalized Water Bottles

After a long day of travel, everyone will welcome the sight of a fresh bottle of water in their room. Make it just a little more personal by ordering personalized water bottles, like the ones shown here. There are several places online where you can order these for about $16 per 20 bottles. Or, if you are wanting to cut costs, buy bulk from your local grocery store or warehouse and create your own personalized labels on your computer. You don't necessarily have to include a bottle for each person, but at least 2 per room is standard.

2. Monogram Mint Tins

Everyone loves to take away a reminder of a fun wedding experience, and a personalized mint tin is a gift people will continue to use and think of you! Depending on which type of container you use, you will end up spending between $1.00 and $3.00 per tin. A more economical choice is a personalized key chain, which can be found for about $1.50 each (this picture from Also, you can get a bit fancier with something like this monogrammed mint tin that has heart shaped peppermints inside. (myweddingfavors) These tins cost on average about $2.50 each. Shop around online and with local retailers to find the best deal. Also, beware that a lot of online stores have a minimum order requirement for personalized items.

3. Tea Bags or Bags of Coffee

Most hotel rooms have a small coffeepot where guests can heat up water or make some coffee. One great idea that as become popular lately is to include personalized individual tea bags in your gift bag. Since you usually have to order these in a minimum of 50 or 60 bags, consider putting 2 or more in each bag so your guests can enjoy a cup of tea in their room and when they get home. If you don't particularly like tea, you can also order small bags of coffee, perfect for the hotel room. Some online retailers even have cocoa, which is a great option if you have guests with children! How much will this cost? $0.75 to $1.00 per tea bag, and around $1.80 for a bag of coffee or cocoa.

4. Travel Candles

It's a romantic weekend, so allow your guests some romance in their room with a personalized travel candle. These come in small tins that have a lid for easy packing and reuse. This is also the perfect kind of gift that people will love to use over and over again. Personalizing them with your names and date of the wedding is a special touch, but it is more expensive to order them that way. (Average of $2.00 per tin) An option here is to do the same as with the water bottles and buy a generic travel candle and make your own labels on your computer. You can save $1.00 or more per tin doing it this way!

5. Bath Fizzers and Scented Soaps

Add a touch of luxury to their room by including some nice toiletries or bath items to the gift bag. Cute wedding themed bath fizzers could be just the thing for someone who danced the night away at your wedding and wants to relax in the tub. Scented soaps can also be a nice touch. Coordinating these items with your wedding colors and theme will add your personal style to the gift bag as well. As a courtesy, you might also consider adding other practical bathroom needs, such as toothpaste, a small travel sewing kit, or an extra toothbrush. People will thank you for your thoughtfullness and attention to detail!

6. A CD of Your Favorite Songs

This gift is definitely more time consuming, but also more personal than an item ordered online. Include songs that you and your future husband find meaningful or that you love. If you put a copy of the song you are going to dance to first, people will listen and remember that special wedding moment forever. Most guests will appreciate a variety of different styles of music, but the most important thing is to choose songs that are important to you and your fiancé. Personalize the CD by printing a creative label and including pictures of the two of you in a pull-out booklet or cover for the CD case. If creating a label on your computer is something you are not comfortable with, you can always order labels from websites like

7. Location Specific Gifts

No matter where you are planning to have your wedding, there is probably some product or history there that is prominent or noteable. You can find tons of wedding favor ideas based on that information. For example, if you are having a beach wedding, include a small bag of sea shells or a palm tree filled with candy. If you are getting married in New York City, why not give a small Statue of Liberty gift? Even small towns have something special to offer. Consider locally grown pecans or peaches for a Georgia wedding, or a locally made jam or jelly. If many of your guests are visiting this place for the first time, it is a great way to introduce them to the flavor of the area!


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