I always have a number of requests with what to put in a welcome bag for wedding guests, so I figured I might as well write a blog about it!
This info is specifically tailored for a destination wedding
- Determine Number of Bags:
- ADULTS: 1 bag per guest room (not 1 bag per adult)
- Keep the bags something that is either recyclable or easy to pack
- KIDS: if there are kids attending, think of doing something extra special for them. For example, for a Hawaii wedding I coordinated, the kids received sand pails filled with more child friendly goodies and snacks to keep them busy.
- ADULTS: 1 bag per guest room (not 1 bag per adult)
- Hotel Policy:
- In my experience, many hotels don’t love working with welcome bag deliveries as they can get misplaced, room numbers change, etc.
- Many hotels often charge to have them delivered. This charge can be extremely expensive at some hotels, so best to know that ahead of time to see if this is even in the budget
- Some hotels don’t allow welcome bags to be handed to guests at check in
- Also check what the hotel policy is for contents of the welcome bag. We have had some hotels not allow ANY food/beverage in bags before.
- Welcome bags are generally an “American” thing. So if you are planning a wedding in a more remote part of the world, alert them as to what welcome bags even are, ask them if it would be easier to be delivered or at check in
- Bottom line, simply ask for their policy. If the policy won’t work for you or your budget, consider handing them out at a welcome dinner or another pre-wedding event
- The only think I would do before your trip is order anything custom (tote, sunglasses, etc). Do this early to avoid steep rush fees.
- Be sure to also bring along any hand written welcome notes, printed itineraries, etc.
- Have the same designer that did your invitations do this to keep the theme cohesive.
- Beyond that, purchase as much as you can at the destination when you arrive if you can. More local the better and saves on a lot of luggage space.
- As the wedding planner, I often do most of the purchasing and assembly for the welcome bags for my clients. If you don’t have a wedding planner hired to do this, be sure you have a friends and family tasked to help.
- Define your budget — these items can add up quick!
- If purchasing custom welcome bags are not in your budget, try use craft bags and do a custom sticker or stamp instead
If no welcome bags are in the budget, at least do a hand-written welcome note and I strongly suggest making room in your budget for an itinerary. The more informed your guests can be, the more on time they will be to shuttles, excursions, dinner, etc.
Add a contact person’s info on the itinerary. For example, my clients use my Mobile number/Viber/Skype contact so guests can contact me anytime during their stay and I can answer questions for them.
WELCOME BAG IDEAS:
- Make it something generic that people will actually reuse again
- Customize the bag tag
- Lunch bag cooler — love these from Toss Designs
- Weekend Itinerary & Welcome Note
- Things to do
- Restaurant Recommendations
- Contact Person
- Local Transportation Info
- Social Media Hashtag/where to upload photos
Custom map created for our clients for their wedding in Postitano (including their beloved dog that couln’t join them!)
By Momental Designs
- Something to Sip
- Water Bottles
- Wine from the region
- Local Beer
- Mini Cocktail Kit
- First Aid Kit
- Target has great mini first aid kits in their travel size section for around $2 each
- Hangover Kit
- Something Sweet
- Something Savory
- Local/Hometown Favorites
- SPF (if somewhere sunny)
- Lip Balm
- Hand Sanitizer
- Music Playlist
- Custom Sunglasses
- Custom Beer Coozie
- Custom Door Hanger
Back from yet another trip to Santorini!
Here are a few quick snaps of my trip…
More details on where to stay and what to do on my Earth + Ocean Travel Co Santorini Blog.
I will be back in Oia in October 2015 if there are any more folks looking to get married and are in need of a coordinator there. We can do anything from an elopement to full service planning. I will be sharing some wedding packages next week for those interested! Please feel free to email erin(@)lindemanweddings.com if you have any questions about getting married or planning your next trip to Santorini.
Hope you enjoy the view…
A new trend perhaps? If so, count me in!
I am a wedding planner who also loves to run. So when one of my clients asked me to plan a 5k race the day of their wedding I leaped for joy. I guess it was only a matter of time before my love of wedding planning and love of running races would come together. I personally can’t think of a better way to start the wedding weekend/wedding day…especially on a destination wedding.
After some brainstorming, here is what I came up with:
- 5k run route mapped out for the wedding day (or sometime during the wedding weekend festivities)
- Set up start/finish lines
- Custom Race Bibs
- Custom Medals
- Custom T-shirts
- Online registration for guests via our website (to get a headcount, t shirt size, etc.)
- Post run goodies (typical post run food & swag such as chocolate milk, bananas, wedding cake? etc)
- Invite other guests of the wedding that might not want to run to participate in cheering on the other runners
- Schedule a photographer at start/finish line
I have a few races under my belt and know the ins and outs of what makes a good race day, so feel very confident in being able to plan a fun run!
…so I get to run too, right?
On a side note, if there are any runners out there, I also have a running blog. Welcome to Runners Paradise.
Meet Elise & Pete. Elise initially talked to me about doing a destination wedding but wasn’t sure about logistics of getting everyone there, how many people would actually make it, etc. After some thought, Elise & Pete decided to do a smaller destination wedding ceremony and reception in Kauai, Hawaii then turn around and do a much larger reception in Seattle the same week. To make it easy, they kept the same color palette for both but made small differences to make each event unique.
Thinking about doing a local reception after a destination wedding?
I strongly suggest doing the local reception immediately or very soon after the destination wedding if you can. I would plan them at the same time and have them both planned around the same time, otherwise, you may never get around to planning that second reception. I have had clients in the past that were thinking about it and then never got around to it after they came back from their destination wedding.
This is where it is also nice to use a planner so that you can enjoy the destination wedding to the fullest and not stress much about having to come home to pull together more details for the local reception. On the same note, I think using the same photographer is also a huge plus if you can. They will know what photos they have already taken, both sets of photos will be the same style, and you will be so familiar with the photographer it just makes for one more familiar face for your more relaxed local reception.
Lindeman Weddings destination wedding planner packages:
1. I can plan both events and also go onsite to coordinate both events depending on the scope of the destination wedding.
2. I can plan the intimate destination wedding from afar. Get you all set up with hotels, ceremony space and a small reception and not go onsite to coordinate the destination wedding, but be ready in Seattle to coordinate your local reception.
Either way works, and I have packages for both options.
Big thanks to Seattle & San Francisco based Clane Gessel, who specializes in shooting destination weddings all over. He is the photographer that was onsite to photograph both the Hawaii and Seattle wedding festivities that took place at the Hyatt Olive 8.
Local Seattle wedding cake baker/designer extraordinaire, Carla from Honeycrumb Cake Studio did a great job bringing a little aloha from Hawaii to the Seattle cake.
Kendra from Loves Me Flowers and I worked on designing the rest of the Seattle reception to make sure it had all of Elise’s favorites: Gold, Blush, Mint, & Chevron details.
Linens by La Tavola Linen in California (who can ship anywhere, like Hawaii and Seattle.)
Gold Flatware and Chiavari chairs from AA Party Rentals.
Cute little bottles of champagne are from Village Wines in Woodinville
The 180+ people at the Seattle reception danced the night away with DJ Sean at Seattle Parties, and were entertained at the cocktail hour by my one of my favorite wedding entertainers, Nash Fung, Magician & all around crowd pleaser.
Mahalo & enjoy!