OOT Bags - Do I need them?

I could probably post this on P&E, but wanted some local advice first. I'm just not sure who I need to have OOT bags for - we are getting married in Joliet and my family is from the NW Burbs (1 hour drive and everyone is staying at the hotel for the most part) and FI's family is from the Quad Cities (~3 hour drive and everyone is staying); we also have a handful of people coming in from out of state.

Since technically everyone is from out of town, do I have to give an OOT bag for everyone? Can I just omit them altogether? I was thinking about having them just for people that are flying in, but don't want to offend anyone driving the 3 hours on his side. What have you all done? TIA!

Re: OOT Bags - Do I need them?

  • Sparkette19Sparkette19 member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    We aren't doing them. In my circle of friends and family no one has ever done them. I think it's a really nice gesture, but like you pointed out a lot of guests could be considered out of town.

    I think OOT bags are not necessary at all. I've never even heard of them until I started on these boards.

    You should follow whatever protocol is in your inner circle.
    When you're born in Chicago you're blessed and you're healed the first time you walk into Wrigley Field. My Bio
  • kmrazekkmrazek member
    edited December 2011
    I have a similar problem - I've got some friends traveling ~1 hour, some family traveling from Peoria (~2 hours) and my fiance's family traveling from Minnesota, so who do I consider out of towners??  Only the ones from Minnesota?  That seemed a little too exclusionary, so at this point (still 8 months out) I'm thinking I'll just skip the idea completely.

    Also, like Sparkette said, I hadn't even heard of such a thing until I started reading bridal magazines and perusing these boards, so I highly doubt you'll offend many (if any) people by not doing it at all. 

    I did a little informal survey of some friends who have traveled to out-of-state/far away weddings, and none of the three people I asked had ever gotten an Out Of Town Bag for the collective ~10 weddings they had traveled to. 
  • jbll326jbll326 member
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Comments
    edited December 2011

    Thank you! I too had never even heard of an OOT bag until I got engaged and hit up the Knot and bridal magazines... I feel like skipping it altogether is a better idea than giving some guests 'little extras' and others not, when it's not necessarily clear what the distinction is. I don't really feel like explaining to my great aunt that she didn't get a bag with bottled water and granola bars in her hotel room because she didn't travel more than 100 miles... ;)  

  • KVMW9182010KVMW9182010 member
    edited December 2011

    All the weddings I have gone to have them, but I am not doing them.  Personally, I usually end up thowing out most of it (besides the bottled water).  While it is a great gesture, I don't think anyone would be at all offended if you didn't have them.

  • edited December 2011
    The only things you need are a marriage license, your FI, and an officiant.  We did OOT bags because we had a lot of guests traveling to attend our wedding.  They went over really well with our guests.  A year later, people still talk to me about them.  I wouldn't do them for just some guests though.  All or nothing, you know?  I don't think they would have been missed if we hadn't done them though.

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