California-Los Angeles

Ideas for welcome bags (free/cheap!)

I need ideas for the welcome bags that are VERY inexpensive.  The water bottle and suncreen thing are standard - what is local and interesting and useful???

Re: Ideas for welcome bags (free/cheap!)

  • If they're staying for a couple of days make (or obtain from hotels) brochures of things to do (including free things like the Griffith Observatory), places to eat and shop, also add in little snacks (think about using local specialty shops like See's Candy or your favorite bakery).  They don't need to be big.  It's just supposed to be something to let your guests know you're thinking of them when they arrive. 
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  • I'd suggest maybe theming your basket.  Something that maybe revolves around a touristy day in LA.  You can include a map (with all the big tourist spots and some of your fav. spots marked), some funky sunglasses, chapstick, etc.  Depending on the time of year.  Check out like Oriental Trading Co or something to bulk order neon visors or sweatbands or random funny things.   
  • I hit up the dollar store and the sample baskets at Target. I got LA Dodgers pens, Starbucks VIA instant coffee, lip balm, sunscreen, hot chocolate mix, trail mix and a few pieces of candy (like from the big bags of mini candy bars or hershey's kisses). We also did personalized water bottles (not cheap) and made up tri-fold brochures on our home printer with a welcome message, favorite bars, restaurants, sites, and a schedule of wedding events.
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  • I bought a few yards of material from Joann Fabrics, made my own very simple bag pattern and whipped up 15 bags.  I then filled it with water, power bars and snacks we bought from Costco.  Really inexpensive but very much appreciated by everyone who was in from out of town.  
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