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To OOT or not to OOT??

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#1 raisinblur

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    Posted 30 April 2008 - 05:54 PM

    I’m kind of agonizing over my OOT bags (or lack thereof). I’m still trying to decide whether to give out OOT bags or not, and wanted some input.

    I love making lists, so here’s my pro/con list:

    OOT bag PROS:
    1. It’d be a really nice gesture, since our guests are traveling so far to be with us.
    2. It would really impress them (shallow for me to think that, but it’s true).
    3. I think some stuff will come in handy, like travel mugs and sunblock, etc.

    OOT bag CONS:
    1. Added expense. We have about 55 guests, and if we do 1 bag per couple and 1 bag per single, we’d need about 35 bags. With a low estimate of $10/bag, that’s $350. But this could easily balloon into $15/bag, making it $525.
    2. For all the money we’d be spending, I’m not sure how useful people will find it. I’d hate to spend all that money, just to have them bury their mug and bag in the back of their closet forever.
    3. I don’t want to pay extra for shipping, so I have no idea how we’re going to bring everything with us. (I can just picture my suitcase filled with 55 travel mugs… ha!)

    I’m leaning towards no OOT bags to avoid the cost and the headache, but I feel kind of cheap for doing that. On the other hand, I don’t want to feel like I’m “wasting” money on things that people don’t want or care about anyway. (eg., If I just emailed all my guests to tell them to bring their own travel mug because the resort is AI, no one would think anything of it. No one’s been to a DW before, so don’t know any better… which is good for me. LOL…)

    So… what should I do? Did anyone NOT do an OOT bag, and did your guests talk smack about it?

    #2 sumrdream

    • Jr. Member
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    • Wedding Date:April 15, 2018
    • Wedding Location:Cocoa Beach, FL

    Posted 30 April 2008 - 06:03 PM

    I've thought about this issue a lot too! I don't want the added cost for one.......I don't want to haul all the crap down and I don't want the added stress of having to put it all together and get it to everyone! HOWEVER having said that.......I read some advice on someone's knot bio that I took to heart....she said not to fill up an OOT bag with a lot of little cutesy crap that no one will use anyway. Instead she gave out, beach towels to her guests and said they were a huge hit! I think I'm planning on doing this....a "Welcome Roll" if you will. I can get the towels at the Nassau Straw Market for about $5.00 a piece, so I won't have to carry them down there.....and I will include some lip balm, Bahamas postcards, a welcome letter and a wedding weekend itinerary. I plan on giving these out at a Welcome to the Bahamas cocktail party the first day everyone arrives. I may even do some DIY luggage tags to include with names for a little something extra. But since I'm feeding people 3 times...(the cocktail party, everyone is included in the Rehearsal Dinner and the Wedding Reception), I don't feel the need to give big welcome gifts. I think they are a totally cute idea , if I didn't think I would stress too much about it or spend too much, I would be tempted to do it! Hope that helps! Good luck!
    June 01, 2009, Nassau Bahamas
    My Planning Bio

    #3 MoonPalacePookie

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      Posted 30 April 2008 - 06:23 PM

      I know I'm going straight to DW hell for this, but I dont think I'm going to do OOT bags. We went to a wedding where we got little bags of snacks, chapstick and small packets of stuff and I know most of my friends just left them at the hotel after we checked out. I would hate to lug things all the way to Mexico to have people toss it. Most of our guests will bring sunscreen and other necessities and I will mail a newsletter to everyone before they leave, so they know what to pack and what to expect. That said, I'm doing extra things with favors, a welcome dinner and other touches, just not the OOT bags. I think its a personal decision, just figure out what is more important to you and your guests. Hope this made sense.
      Robert & Eugenia

      July 23, 2008

      #4 rodent


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        Posted 30 April 2008 - 06:40 PM

        OOT bags are not a requirement. Do them if you want to. Don't do them if you don't.

        I spent about $10 a bag, but I feel like it's stuffed with things people will use. The more I read the threads about what guests really used, the more things I added to my list. I had a lot of fun making mine. I also focused on keeping things compact & packable. instead of mugs, I did stacking cups. I did 70 cent lightweight bags.


        #5 ~Kate~

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        • 329 posts

          Posted 30 April 2008 - 06:58 PM

          We thought about this for awhile, and I read a TON of threads on OOT bags to see what people found really useful, etc. We decided to get just a few nice things - so we're doing pashminas for the ladies (under $4.50/pash) and sombreros for the men (under $2.50 per), plus some of the flip flop note pads, mexican themed coin purses, and customized pens from OTC.

          We're in the same boat as you - 35 bags - and wanted to stay around $10/bag. We tried to pick items we thought our guests would like, keeping in mind the avg age (no children coming), etc.

          Good luck!!

          #6 rodent


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            Posted 30 April 2008 - 07:12 PM

            You could easily do just one thing too. There are no rules. Like a mug with a tag on the handle. Or just a welcome letter. Or nothing at all.

            #7 Spazz

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              Posted 30 April 2008 - 07:17 PM

              You definitely don't need to do them. The majority of my guests have never been to a DW, so I don't think they would even realize that a lot of people do OOT bags. I definitely wanted to do them, but that's really a personal decision. I have to admit that for me it did really increase my budget and it's the majority of my luggage (I have 85 guests for a total of 53 OOT bags). But I love doing stuff like this (even though right now it's giving me a headache figuring out how to lug it all down there). Like Morgan, before I bought things I thought about the usefulness of it - i.e. candles b/c the rooms are "musty" according to past travelers - and how easy it would be to pack - i.e. stackable cups instead of travel mugs.

              #8 AwesomeBride

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                Posted 30 April 2008 - 09:43 PM

                I personally have decided to do OOT bags but I only have to do 10 bags. I have really had to stop myself and think before I buy things but I think I put some pratical things in them. I did alot of small travel size things, I also did cups that were stackable.

                I don't think that anybody would hold it against you for not giving out OOT bags, unless you have either had a DW or been to one people might not even know what they are.

                #9 Heidi

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                  Posted 30 April 2008 - 09:45 PM

                  I vote skip it. Nobody used anything from our bags, except travel mugs. I should've just done the mugs!!
                  Married April 4, 2008 at the Riu Ocho Rios!

                  #10 raisinblur

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                    Posted 30 April 2008 - 10:36 PM

                    Thanks for all the comments, ladies! It's been really helpful. I guess I was stressing about it because I've been looking at totes, and they're all so big and I was like, "omg, how am I going to fill it up with stuff and how much is this going to cost us?!" But now I'm liking the idea of just giving out a mug (or stackable cups - solves the shipping problem), and maybe filling them with some first-aid items (tylenol, immodium), cause I think those will be the most useful stuff. I think it'll be a good balance of giving something nice/useful for the guests, but also being more budget-friendly.

                    Morgan, I'm going to look through your OOT links now. Seems like a lot of useful info!! Thanks so much. I especially like the way you made the individual pill packs, without having to buy them in individual packs. That will definitely save some $$. I'm amazed you only spent $10 each. They look great!

                    PS, Heidi, your pro-pics look amazing! Congrats!!

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