pink and teal wedding welcome bags

Unique Wedding Welcome Bag Ideas We Love

May 4, 2022
By Wedding Spot

Looking for a unique yet affordable way to create gasp-worthy wedding welcome bags? Need ideas for creative items, themes, and wrapping that are sure to surprise guests? If so, these unique wedding welcome bag ideas are here to help.

In this post, we reveal our top picks for tips, tricks, and truly unique wedding welcome bag ideas. Whether you’re looking for a delightful way to tell your love story or you simply need suggestions that go beyond “something sweet plus something salty," we’ve got you covered.

Explore these expert-approved unique wedding welcoming bag ideas

1. Play tour guide

You can turn your wedding welcome bag into a mini adventure for guests traveling from out of town. There’s nothing like a local to give you recommendations on what to do and where to eat in the area.

Whether it’s the must-see highlights from your rural hometown you won’t find on any blogs or your take on the best bagel joint in New York City, your tour-guide-themed wedding welcome bag will be completely unique to you.

This is the time to express your opinions on why you hate deep dish pizza and where to get a real quality slice in Chicago. Or, simply flex your history buff muscles and give your guests a lesson on the location and your venue. 

No matter what you choose to include, guests will appreciate your passion and one-of-a-kind insights.

As far as items go, things like artfully hand-drawn maps, tickets to a really cool and unique local event happening the day after the wedding (get RSVPs first), and samples of whatever the region is known for will be guaranteed hits.

2. Create a survival kit

“My company specializes in gifting solutions - particularly servicing south-asian weddings in which gifting has a prevailing presence,” says Gift Your Best Founder Priya Raj. In an interview with Wedding Spot, Raj said that survival kit wedding welcome bags are very popular these days, especially at destination weddings.

Not sure where to start? “We filled some personalized jute bags with some useful (but often forgotten) items; bobby pins, safety pins, Tylenol, Alka Seltzer, chewing gum, Shout stain remover wipes (and so the list goes on). It's a great option as it can be adjusted according to the things which your guests may need.”

You can also use this as an opportunity to help guests plan for the weather or terrain. Umbrellas, raincoats, sunblock, bug spray, and flip-flops are all welcome additions.

3. Cater to the foodies

If you’re looking for a guaranteed crowd-pleaser, you can’t go wrong with a food and beverage-themed wedding welcome bag.

“Depending on the set up of your celebrations (especially if you're staying in a hotel) there may not always be accessibility/time for guests to leave if they'd like a snack between events — and room service can be a costly option either for them or for you (if you're footing the bill)," Raj said. 

Couple with a bouquet seeing the sky

Wedding room blocks made simple with Wedding Spot

Learn more

There are many ways to make your foodie-themed wedding welcome bags. Raj and team choose items they know everyone from adults to kids will enjoy.

“We opt for things like cup noodles, chips, biscuits, tea bags, powdered coffee (the good kind), water bottles, soft drinks, etc.,” says Raj. “You can opt to have these in a basket or tote bag — it's totally mouldable to your preferences and budget. And luckily all of these things are available to purchase in bulk.”

Want something a little more personalized? Source from local markets or create entire no-prep meal kits inspired by your wedding location. For example, if you’re hosting your celebrations in an area known for its Balkan cuisine, be sure to include items such as authentic coffee, a bottle of rakija (for everyone 21 and over, of course), and some pre-packaged baklava among your list of unique wedding welcome bag ideas to complement the experience.

When in doubt, a charcuterie-themed wedding welcome bag is always a treat! Add in custom-label bottles of wine with your names and wedding date on them. Include at least one hearty cheese, a fresh or dried fruit, and a salty dry item like nuts or crostinis. Keep it budget-friendly by being mindful of portions or keeping it snack-sized.

4. Make it eco-friendly

Looking for unique wedding welcome bag ideas but aren’t sure how to make them sustainable? Look no further. There are lots of ways to make your wedding welcome bags eco-friendly. Start by considering what you’ll package them in.

For starters, favor bags made out of seed paper are really cool and fully plantable, creating wildflower blooms guests can enjoy long after the wedding ends. You can also trade traditional tissue paper for the biodegradable version. Or, leave a note in your welcome bag letting guests know that you’re reusing tissue paper from past gifts with the suggestion they consider doing the same.

Not sure what to put in the bag itself? If no straws will be offered at your wedding, a reusable metal one or a small pack of paper straws is a great addition. You can also include other eco-friendly items such as Swedish dishcloths by Soak iT Up Cloths and others.

5. Tell your love story

Did you know you can use your guest gifts as a way to tell the story of who you both are and how you first met?

Wedding Spot spoke to International Event & Wedding Planner Robyn Baltuch of Baltuch Designs via email about how to come up with truly unique wedding welcome bag ideas. Baltuch said it’s all about symbolism.

“Here is an example of a recent welcome bag I curated for a couple having a destination wedding in the Florida Keys where the bride spent a lot of time growing up, and also taking into account the groom's Irish background and how they met. The welcome bag included a letter printed on paper with a beach scene background and had reminders of the various weekend activities times and locations.”

Here’s what Baltuch used:

  • The couple's favorite snacks (popcorn and jellybeans) plus some regional flavors (key lime cookies, because that’s what the Florida Keys are known for).
  • A single-serve cocktail in the form of a mini bottle of Jameson and a mini can of ginger ale, which represents the Irish background and the couple's favorite drink.
  • Reusable Publix-branded cups because Publix is where the couple met (and the item is useful to make the drink in).

Baltuch says the most important thing is to “have fun with it and let the personalities shine!”

FAQs about wedding welcome bags

How much should you budget for wedding welcome bags?

We polled a few experts on what couples should realistically spend on these gifts. Here’s what they had to say:

  • Raj from Gift Your Best: “The easiest way to budget for gifting is figuring out the cost per person, factor in any other items you're planning on giving to guests — whether that's wedding favors or other gifts throughout the wedding festivities. Once that number starts getting to an uncomfortable amount, you know it's time to stop.”
  • Rachel Beer from Birra Weddings & Events: “The average budget is $35-$50 per bag depending on the items included.”
  • Kaushay Ford from Kaushay & Co. Events:  “When it comes to budgeting for your welcome bags, the cost can vary greatly. On average, I've seen the cost for welcome bags range from $10-$60 per bag. One of the biggest factors that will affect the cost is the bag itself. For example, going for something disposable like a kraft paper bag (~$0.50) will be more cost-effective than a custom branded canvas bag (~$16.00+). Aside from that, more expensive treats (think your favorite bottle of liquor or anything customized) will quickly increase your costs.”

What are some ways to make wedding welcome bags more affordable?

Ford told Wedding Spot that “one great way to cut down on costs for your welcome bags is to make 1 bag per couple or family attending instead of one per person.” By doing this, you’re literally cutting your spending in half!

You should also take a moment to remember what these welcome bags are really all about: gratitude. “Whatever you decide to include in your bags, your guests are sure to feel welcomed to your wedding weekend when they open it!” says Ford.

As Ford says, “writing a brief but genuine note to each guest is the perfect way to start spreading the love during your wedding weekend.” And it may even save you more money in pre-wedding event costs because “this serves as a personalized welcome even if you don't host a welcome party and sets a warm, inviting tone for the entire wedding weekend.”

Put these unique wedding welcome bag ideas to use!

Next up, learn everything you need to know about wedding room blocks to make sure your guests have a truly great experience!

Couple with a bouquet seeing the sky

Wedding room blocks made simple with Wedding Spot

Learn more

Featured Blog

Follow Us


Wedding Spot

Wedding Spot

The Wedding Spot blog is designed to help couples navigate every step of the wedding planning journey. From before the engagement to after you say “I do,” our goal is to give you the tips, ideas, and inspiration to prepare for your big day — and all that comes with it.