Etiquette Rules for Wedding Favors

What You Need to Know Before You Buy

Purchasing little gifts for your guests may seem like a trivial detail, but there are a few important etiquette rules for wedding favors that can make a big difference in the impression you leave. This is your chance to thank your guests, so whatever you give tells them that they are important to you. Make it something they will appreciate and remember by following a few important guidelines.

You may already realize that you need to know the number of guests you have invited, the cost or budget you are allotting for favors, the theme of the wedding, and how you intend to present the guest gifts. Another part of the process is determining how you would like to present the favors. These "gifts" for the guests can be distributed in a number of ways, such as one placed at each place seating or in a container for the guests to help themselves. Aside from presentation, here are some other important considerations:

The Do's In Wedding Favor Etiquette

  • Choose favors that can be enjoyed by males and/or females
  • It is crucial that you have a favor for each guest
  • Incorporate your choices into the theme of the wedding
  • Order or make additional favors in case of accidents or extra guests
  • Have a plan as to how you will distribute everything
  • Make a budget for the favors and stick to it
  • Select items that have special meaning to the bride and groom
  • Give your guests something that you would enjoy receiving

Less Is Not Best

When it comes to the wedding favors, you do not want to run out. It is always best to have more than you think your need just in case something unexpected happens. This could involve damage to a few of the favors during the set up at the reception venue, or even some of the guests bringing an unexpected guest (invited or not). It is very likely you will have a few people RSVP at the last minute as well. The traditional way of distributing the favors is by placing one at each seat. However, you should also put a few extra into a decorative container near the exit for those who did not receive one. If you expect a lot of children at the event, it is sometimes helpful to have a separate favor for the children. These can either be placed at their assigned seats, can be handed out during the reception, or placed in a container that is at child height near the door.

The Don'ts of Wedding Favor Etiquette

Although the don'ts are very similar to the do's, it is simply a reminder of the importance of wedding favor etiquette.

  • Don't forget to place the favors at each seat or in a location where the guests can find them.
  • Don't forget to purchase non-gender specific favors
  • Don't use favors that will clash with the wedding/reception décor
  • Don't order just enough or make just enough, less is not better
  • Don't give one favor to a couple to share, unless it is a larger gift
  • Don't give your guests damaged favors
  • Don't be afraid to change the favor plan if you find something less expensive that you like better
  • Don't use favors that are not complementary to the theme
  • Don't give your guests a favor that you would not like to receive yourself

Need some favor ideas or inspiration? Browse through our Wedding Favors section. There are many different types of favors, including personalized, edible, diy favors, and other elegant and practical items. Just scroll through the menu at the left to see the range of categories available.


Also, check out the Wedding Themes section for specific ideas to fit the theme and color scheme of your day. 


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