Out-of-Town bag

An Out-of-Town bag (also known as OOT bag, Out-of-Town basket, or Welcome Bag) is a package of gifts and treats given to out-of-town guests to make them feel welcome.

The bags can contain local specialties (such as food or beverage items manufactured or invented locally), souvenirs, area maps, tickets or passes to local amusements, etc. The bags can be left at the hotel where the guests are staying and the front desk will usually distribute them to guests upon arrival. The decor of the bags can match the theme of the wedding.

Contents

Here are some of the standard contents of an Out-of-Town bag:

  • Itinerary outlining all wedding-related activities
  • Contact name and phone number in case anyone has questions (Assign a good friend or family member to be the primary contact, so you don't have to field the calls - but also include the engaged couple's cell numbers for emergencies)
  • Bottles of water & snacks. Wedding guests that are staying at hotels will appreciate not having to pay the high prices at the mini bar.
  • Maps or tourist info for the local area. Visit your local chamber of commerce or visitors bureau; they can provide plenty of handouts.
  • Local coupons (to outlet stops, tourist attrations, etc.)
  • A CD and self-addressed mailer for guests to return the pictures that they took of their event to you when they return home
  • Copy of the local newspaper (hotels usually only provide USAToday)
  • Stamped postcard (although you may want to draw attention to this elsewhere to people realize it is already stamped)

Detroit

  • Faygo pop
  • Coupons/maps to nearby Coney Islands, Greektown, Mexicantown, Polish Hamtramck
  • Apple cider
  • Detroit Popcorn Factory popcorn
  • Bells Beer

Chicago

  • Frango mints, Garrett popcorn, Quaker oatmeal bar

Atlanta

  • Bottle(s) of Coca Cola Classic / Coupon for Coca Cola Museum/Tour
  • Georgia Aquarium Map/Coupon
  • Stone Mountain Map/Information
  • List of 'Southern' Style Restaurants (OK Cafe, Mary Macs Tea Room, etc.)


San Diego

  • Balboa Park museum schedules, maps, and info
  • flip flops, sunscreen, inflatable beach balls, other beach related things
  • Stone beer (made in North County San Diego)
  • coupons / suggestions for good Mexican food

San Francisco

  • Ghirardelli Chocolates
  • See’s Candies
  • Napa / Sanoma Wine
  • "Only in San Francisco" free visitor's guide


Philadelphia

  • Tastykakes, Soft Pretzels, Goldenberg's Peanut Chews, Yards Beer, Wissahickon Water, Directions to Tony Luke's
  • Liberty Bell postcards, Cheez Whiz, Herr's Chips, Hershey's kisses!

Hawaii/Tropical Locations

  • Macadamia nuts, Hawaiian Sun or Aloha Maid Drinks, Water, Maui potato chips, kakimochi (soy flavored rice crackers), mango, lychee, papaya, pineapple, sweet popcorn, hurricane popcorn, mochi (rice cakes with different fillings), Portuguese sweet bread, kona coffee, big isle chocolate dipped cookies, Honolulu cookie company lemon/lime/lilikoi bars,
  • mini bottles of sunscreen, baseball cap or a hat, beach towels, beach mat, kukui nut lei,
  • pop-out map, map of the bus schedules and trolley schedules, list of events (free guides can be picked up at the airport at some shopping centers or if on Oahu in Waikiki)

Seattle

  • Popout Map of Seattle, umbrella, local chocolates (Fran's, Theo's, Wind River), coffee gift card (Starbucks, Tullys or Seattle's Best Coffee), stamped post card of Seattle, seasonal fruit from Eastern Washington (cherries, apples), water, Jones Soda, Frangos, Holmquist Orchards nuts, Chukar Cherry candies, Aplets and Cotlets, Totem Smokehouse salmon, Aldrich Farms jam, Boeing glider toy, Amazon.com gift card, a copy of the local newspaper (Seattle Times, Seattle PI or the alternative magazine, The Stranger), radio station guide, ferry schedules, Almond Roca, Mountain Bars, chocolate covered coffee beans, Thomas Kemper root beer and Gary Larson Farside Cartoons.

New Orleans

  • Zapp's Potato Chips, Aunt Sally's Pralines, Pat O'Brien's Hurricane Mix, Cafe du Monde chicory coffee and beignet mix, Abita Amber beer, Emeril Lagasse cookbook, Paul Prudhomme's spice mix, Tony Cachere's spice mix, Zatarain's red beans and rice in a box
  • beads, masks, coins and other Mardi Gras themed trinkets

Arizona/Southwest

  • Salsa & chips, Cactus Candy, Desert rocks (jelly beans that look like river rocks)
  • Trail mix, jerky, Arizona Ice tea
  • Cheap pair of sunglasses, sunscreen, Chapstick
  • Small dreamcatcher

New York City

  • A really, really good city map with the subway map over streets.
  • Zagat guide (restaurants or nightlife) or copy of Time Out New York
  • Apples
  • Starbucks gift card
  • Your choice of ethnic or specialty foods. Unique food shops in NYC: Magnolia Bakery, Sweets from Serendipity, Chocolate Bar, Peanut butter co., etc

Boston/Providence

  • Red Sox trinket
  • Cannoli from Mike's Pastry's (the North End)
  • Wine from local vineyard (Cape-Truro, Rhode Island-Newport, Sakonnet)
  • Boston Baked Beans in a little clear sachet
  • Area map is a MUST because of the confusing streets! Subway map.
  • A mini-constitution

Milwaukee/Wisconsin

  • Cheese, cheese curds, anything cheese related
  • Coupon for frozen custard
  • Beer (Leinenkeugel, Miller, Pabst, Schlitz)
  • Anything Packers-related
  • Recommended restaurants for fish fry
  • Mittens, earmuffs, etc. (in winter)
  • Brewery tour schedules/reservation info
  • Alterra coffee

Texas

  • BBQ sauce (Stubb's)
  • LoneStar or Shiner beer
  • Bandanna and cowboy themed items
  • Don't Mess with Texas Shirt
  • Austin City Limits or other local music scene paraphernalia
  • real sugar Coke or Dr. Pepper

Vermont

  • Vermont maple candy

Florida

  • Florida Coconut Patties
  • Key Lime cookies, key lime iced tea, etc.
  • Florida oranges or other citrus fruit
  • Beach-themed items- mini sunblock, etc.

Virginia

  • Pre-packaged Virginia Peanuts
  • "Virginia is for Lovers" Bumper Sticker/Post Card
  • Virginia Wine
  • Route 11 Chips
  • Sweet Tea
  • Old Dominion Root Beer
  • Mars Brand candy bars (headquarters is in Va)
  • Virginia apple
  • Sample size Virginia apple butter, jam, honey
  • Mountain Dew (include the 'fun fact' that it was invented in Virginia)

North Carolina

  • Cheerwine soda
  • Sundrop soda
  • NC mountain spring water (multiple varieties / companies)
  • Salem Baking Co. Moravian Cookies
  • Lance Inc. snacks
  • Krispy Kreme doughnuts
  • Butterfields Candy
  • VisitNC Travel Guide (call 1-800-847-4862 to order FREE)
  • NC State Transportation Map (call 1-877-368-4968 to order FREE)

Tennessee

  • Moonpie

Washington DC

Theme Ideas

Cruise/Beach/Tropics

  • Sunblock/aloe vera
  • Towel
  • Flip flops
  • Beach Towel
  • Sun Mat
  • Sunscreen


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