How Much Will Your Wedding Favors Cost in 2018?

The wedding favors given to your guests will be a sweet reminder of your event. The goal for couples is to create one that their guests will be happy to display in their homes while being relevant to their wedding and within their budget. From cultural mementos to something that matches the theme and colors of the wedding, this is one area where couples can express their creativity and thank guests for sharing their beautiful day with them! Considering there is no single type of wedding favor given out, how much should couples expect to budget for their wedding favors?

According to nationwide wedding data compiled by Decidio within the last 12 months, couples can expect to pay an average of $250 for their wedding favors in 2018, which is an average of 0.8% of their total wedding budget. This expense ranks number 15 in terms of wedding expenditures ahead of renting a wedding tuxedo and behind buying wedding invitations (to view complete local wedding data across all industries, click HERE).

Remember, wedding favors are sold per piece, meaning you will have to consider your options after dividing your available budget by the number of guests you plan to invite. For example, if your total budget is $300 and you plan to invite 100 guests, then look for favors priced around $3.00 per piece.

2018 City and State Averages

The amount couples will spend on their wedding favors depends on their available budget, creativity, how many guests will be in attendance, the geographic area where they live, and other factors. Real average budgets for wedding favors spent by couples across the country over the past 9-12 months is shown below. *NOTE: The amounts appearing below are updated throughout the year.

Top 10 Most And Least Expensive Cities

The Average Cost of Wedding Party Favors by State

StatesAverage Cost

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What is Included?

Thinking of what your wedding favors will be should be easier when you have first agreed on your wedding theme. For example, if it is a beach wedding you can hand out colorful beta fish in small fish bowls, or perhaps dried out starfish or bright sand dollars. If your wedding takes place outdoors or in a garden you can give out small pots and seeds that will grow into flowers that match your wedding colors. There are also many religious themed favors you can buy to hand out to your guests. Your choices of what goodies to give should always have some significance to your big day and the possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

After you've agreed on your wedding theme, make a list of ideas on what you can give out as your favors. When you've done that, think which items on your list would be something you would like to receive yourself. All too often guests are given objects that they don't want, so they're quickly discarded. Think of something that is preferably practical or if not, edible!

Practical Favors: Give your guests something they actually consider useful so that they will make it on the trip home. Some popular ideas are:

  • Bottle Openers

  • Luggage Tags

  • Journals

  • Lip Balm

  • Photo Frames with photo booth pictures

  • Golf Balls with Tees

  • Tote Bags

  • Handcrafted Soaps

  • Candles

  • Sunglasses -bonus points if it's an outdoor wedding

Edible Favors: Give out something you know your guests will loveâ?¦to eat! These are some failsafe options that won't make it past the wedding reception:

  • Chocolates

  • Bottle of Wine from Local Vineyard

  • Macarons

  • Donuts

  • Sugared Almonds

  • Local Jellies or Spreads

  • S'mores Kits

  • Truffles

  • Locally Roasted Coffee

  • Local Hot Sauce

  • Cake Pops

  • Mini Pies

Although your options are limitless, we would be remiss if we did not mention some favors guests will most likely NOT want to see waiting for them at their reception table:

  • Monogrammed items are personalized for you, not your guests. This doesn't really inspire them to display it in their own homes.

  • Items with your wedding date - Not advisable for the same reason as monogrammed items. The exception to both these rules are for edible favors.

  • Koozies - While they can be called a practical gift for a small percentage of your guests, they also scream tacky! Most of these won't even get out of the reception, let alone the hotel room when they check out.

  • Visibly cheap or plastic items are worse than nothing at all! Assembling and packaging handfuls of candied almonds are the go to affordable alternative when you have no budget.

  • Single items that would normally be used as part of a set like a single drink coaster or champagne flute will likely not be used by the vast majority of your guests.

Before you go out to your local wedding and party favor outlet, first be clear on how many pieces you will need, your wedding theme and colors, budget, and style. They should be ordered around 1 month before your wedding date. This will allow you time for corrections and assembling/packaging the pieces if needed. Now that you have some ideas of what wedding favors you want, let's talk about the different options on where you can get them!

Retail Favor Stores - Local wedding favor and supply stores can be found in every major metropolitan area. These outlets will have the latest products available for your review. The benefit of going this route is that you can hold the product in your hand and instantly know if it will match your theme, or if the one on the next shelf is even better. There is no guesswork on colors or sizes, and you will have a better chance of scoring a deal or discount when speaking directly with the business owner. Most of these stores also have an online presence, so pricing is more or less in line with purely online storefronts, and you know the product is in stock and will be delivered in plenty of time.

Online Retailers - The growth of online retailers selling wedding favors and supplies has exploded, and couples can now buy virtually any type favor from anywhere on the planet! As businesses don't have to invest in a physical storefront, prices are often lower, but couples should be aware that product inventory and delivery issues may become a problem, so be sure you allow yourself extra time when ordering.

DIY - The ultimate way to save on costs, making your own wedding favors may seem like a good idea to save money. However the assembling, labeling, gluing, and printing of hundreds of favors may be biting off more than you can chew. Be sure you know what you're getting into by creating a few samples with friends first to make sure the savings are worth it.

Regardless of the wedding favor or where it is from, remember that you will still need to wrap it up somehow before presenting them to your guests! Whether a colorful ribbon or box or shiny container, creatively wrapping your favors gives them a personalized look that your guests will love. If you choose to give out edible goodies, remember that they may need special packaging to absorb grease stains, etc.

Key Points to remember:

  • In 2018, the average cost for wedding favors spent by couples across the US will be $250, which is around 0.8% of their total wedding budget.

  • Pricing for wedding favors primarily correlates to how many guests are being invited, and how much you are willing to spend per guest. The cost per piece is multiplied by the number of guests to arrive at your total budget/cost.

  • Before you begin your search think of what your wedding theme and colors will be. Doing so will not only save you time on your search, but will increase the livelihood of your guests actually keeping the favor beyond a day or two.

  • There are countless options to choose from, but keep it relevant to the event. The rule of thumb on your search is to ask yourself if you would want that item. Many couples give out a variety of unwanted favors. Edible favors are often the best.

  • How you get your wedding favors may accept the price, but often the benefits associated with purchasing from a local wedding store or outlet far outweigh saving some money from an online only retailer based overseas.

  • Remember to factor any time that will be needed for assembling and/or wrapping the items in an attractive manner for your guests.

Tips on Saving Money on Your Wedding Favors

Take advantage of great tips on how to save money on your wedding favors while still giving something that your guests will love!

  • The decision to assemble your own wedding favors will be more enticing by asking friends, family or your wedding party to help. It'll also be quicker and more fun when you make a party out of it!

  • Discontinued items can often be bought for big savings, as stores trying to make room for newer inventory will be willing to make a deal.

  • Ask for samples to be sent to you before buying anything, ESPECIALLY when buying online. It's hard to know something is the right size and color for sure until you see it in your hands. This rule even goes for asking for proofs for any packaging or personalized tags you are considering to ensure they get the spelling right.

  • If you or someone you know is good at baking, make some homemade brownies, cookies, or other treats and just add colorful packaging to give it a personalized look.

  • Don't be left short and order around 10 to 15 percent more than the number of guests you have to account for breakage, guests taking multiple favors, lost items, and some you'll want to keep for yourself!

  • Repurpose other elements of your wedding to give away as favors. For example, table decorations such as mini flower bud vases or boxing a slice of wedding cake for guests to take home.

  • Give a lottery ticket to each guest and place one under each plate. Your guests will keep them for sure and if anyone wins you might even get something in return!

  • Remember to factor taxes and shipping costs in your calculations when trying to determine whether buying locally versus online.

  • Save money by giving one out favor per couple (if inviting a lot of couples). Just place it between their place settings so they'll know it's for both of them.

  • If giving out goody bags, make sure that the contents are unisex so you can save by buying in bulk.

  • Shop your local wedding supply stores for ideas, then research online to see if you can find the product at a lower rate. There will still be issues with delivery and returns, but at least you'll have seen the product first hand before ordering.

  • Inquire at your physical or online retailer if you can return any unopened favors for a full refund. That way you can buy extras with confidence and send back any that are unclaimed.

  • Print out a poem or note of gratitude for each guest and attach a small package of vegetable or flower seeds for your guests to plant at home.

  • Think outside the box and order from non-wedding sites that specialize in the items you want (like chocolatiers, picture frame makers, etc) for lower prices.

  • Instead of assembling favors, create a DIY cookie, dried nut, granola, or candy buffet table for guests to use. You'll save money by buying in bulk and it'll be fun for the guests to serve themselves!

  • If you're ordering from an online site, be sure they MAIL you a sample before placing your order, as colors will appear differently on your computer monitor when compared with the real thing.

  • Start looking early to take advantage of sales. Stores commonly have blowout post-holiday and year-end sales.

  • Include every detail regarding the purchase order in your contract, including delivery dates as well as cancellation and return policy.

  • You may get a price break simply by asking for one! Retailers know that competitors are just a click away, and will negotiate within reason to get your business.

Your big day will only happen once, but giving the right favor to your wedding guests will ensure that it's remembered for years after!