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  • Writer's pictureSTP Weddings

Do I need...

As we go through our checklist with couples, there are often details that we mention and the couple asks "well, do I need that?". Your wedding should be unique to you and your partner, so the answer is, it's up to you! There are a lot of things that you may see included in others weddings that don't feel right for you or that you may just want to skip. In this article we talk about some of the most common items that couples debate. We will address some more of these decisions in our upcoming article about wedding traditions. Bottom line is, don't feel pressured into anything wedding related just because you feel like you have to or it is what others do. [Photo by Jessa Schifilliti Associates]

Ceremony Programs

Ceremony programs are nice for your guests to follow along with during the ceremony. It gives them an idea of who everybody is and what to expect throughout the ceremony. That said, ceremony programs often get thrown away immediately after the ceremony or left on guests seats. If you are having a short ceremony, our vote would be to skip the programs and save the money. If you wanted a spot to say thank you to family and friends, you can always add a sign to your ceremony. If you are having a church ceremony, they are a nice to have because of the length of the ceremony, but don't worry, guests will still be able to follow along even without them!


As you could probably tell from our Favors article, we love edible favors. However, we do feel like favors are a nice treat, but overall aren't necessary. You are spending a lot of money hosting your wedding, so if you want to skip favors, it's totally fine! If you are going to do a favor though, make sure it is something that you would want to take home with you if you were a wedding guest. We hate to see favors left on the table at the end of the night.

Printed Menus

If you are having a seated dinner, we do recommend getting menus printed. Even if guests chose their dinner selection on your RSVP card, it is a nice reminder and also a good way to detail the sides coming with their entree. If you are having a buffet, printed menus aren't necessary. At your buffet station, the food items can be labeled and you can even add a menu sign at the start of the buffet line. [Photo by SweetWater Photography]

Bathroom Baskets

This is an item that usually gets put off until the end of planning and often forgot. While they aren't necessary, they are a nice thing to have. If you are debating doing them, you can always do one in the ladies room and skip the mens room. This is also an easy thing to ask your Maid of Honor or a family member to take care of for you.

Guest Transportation

With Uber and other similar transportation options so easily available, it is not necessary to provide your guests with transportation to and from your reception. However, if you are able to swing it budget wise, it's definitely a nice thing to offer if you have a lot of out of town guests who will be staying at hotels. Try to keep it simple and only offer transportation from the recommended hotels (if people are staying at Air B&B's, they can walk to or get a ride to the hotel). If you don't provide transportation, you can add info on local options for getting to and from the reception on your website or in welcome bags for guests who don't want to drive themselves. You can also choose to provide a coupon code for a service like Uber. Finally, you can check with your hotel to see if they happen to have a shuttle that your guests can use.

A Cake Cutter and Champagne Flutes

Most people register for these, but if you didn't, don't worry about it! The venue (or caterer) will most likely be able to provide you with these items. Make sure you check with them first though, don't just assume! [Photo by Jessa Schifilliti Associates]

A Cake Topper

Nope! This is up to you and should be based on your style of cake. A lot of cakes look beautiful with some flowers and don't need anything else. If you are debating, talk to your bakery and see what they think. If you do go with a cake topper, don't be afraid to have fun with it and do something personalized to you and your partner.

Guest Book

Guests books are a fun way to remember who attended your wedding...but there are also pictures and your own memories you form from your special moments. You can definitely skip a guest book if you aren't into them or go an alternate route. There are a lot of other fun options like a book of photo strips or a framed picture of you and your partner that people can sign.


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