Oh your mid-20’s. The time in your life where half your friends still don’t have real jobs and the other half are getting engaged and married. In the past year I have been to 3 different weddings(including being a bridesmaid in my best friend’s wedding back in September and I already have another wedding on my calendar this June. While packing for travel is nothing new to me, packing for a wedding is a whole different ballgame, ESPECIALLY if you are in the wedding party. So to help myself and all you other wedding attendees, I have come up with the Ultimate Wedding Guest Packing List as a guide for wedding-goers everywhere. I did my best to cover all the bases here, but be sure to alter this list as needed for your own wedding travels! Now, without further ado, here is the packing list all wedding guests really need!
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The one nice thing about weddings is that there is usually a dress code so you at least have some guidance on the outfit you will wear to the wedding itself. Being in a wedding is even better because they you are usually told exactly what to wear for the wedding and even what to wear while getting ready. When I’m off to a wedding, these are the outfits I make sure to include.
- Wedding Day Outfit
- I have been to everything from black tie weddings to an outdoor farmhouse wedding and the outfits have varied just as much. If you are in the wedding party, this is the easiest part. If not, get an idea from others what they might be wearing, and if you don’t want to commit to buying a dress, I highly recommend Rent the Runway! You get a beautiful designer outfit and spend less money. Even better, if you sign up using this link, you get $30 off your first rental.
- Rehearsal Dinner outfit(if you are invited)
- This is the outfit that varies a lot. Rehearsals can be almost as formal as the wedding, or a chil night in jeans at a bar. If you are unsure what kind of event you should expect, be sure to ask the bride and groom. You can also use Rent the Runway for this outfit as well!
- Clothes to get ready on the day of
- I recommend a comfortable leggings and button down combo. The leggings are comfy and easy to relax in and the button down can be taken off at the end without messing up your hair or makeup.
- Clothes for exploring the area either before or after the wedding if time allows
- This can vary based on the location and how much time you have there, but its always good to have some normal clothes for before and after the big event.
- I am going to assume this one is pretty self-explanatory, but I had to include it in order to call this a complete list.
- As a woman, I have learned that weddings require some very specific undergarments. It seems like every dress requires a specific bra and that you never seem to be able to escape the need for Spanx. Be sure to try everything on beforehand just as you would wear it the day of to make sure everything fits just as it should.
- Any other necessities
- Socks, extra shirts, and any other clothes you need to survive goes in this category. If you are flying to the wedding, be sure to bring comfy plane clothes. If you are driving, the same applies. Just make sure you have all your bases covered and you are ready to go!
If you have been following me for a bit, you might have figured out that I take shoes very seriously. I even have a whole post on my Favorite Travel Shoes. Weddings can be tricky because they tend to require more shoes than you may take on a normal trip. For instance, I almost NEVER pack heels when I travel, but I do for most weddings. Here are my recommendations for what shoes you should consider bringing with you.
- Heels or dress shoes for the weddingAs I said above, I will almost never pack heels normally because they take up space and aren’t the most comfortable, but they are necessary for many formal weddings. If possible, try not to wear brand new heels to a wedding. Try to break them in ahead of time and save yourself terrible blisters.
- Flats for dancing the night awayI don’t know about everyone else but I tend to give up on my heels about an hour into any night so I always have flats at the ready. I love Tieks personally because they fold up nicely and are super comfy, but I know they can be over budget for many people. If Tieks are out of your price range, Amazon has some really great alternatives at a fraction of the cost. Check them out here.
- Comfy shoes for pre and post wedding eventsThis part is easy because you just pack your go-to travel shoes! My favorites are all right here.
Accessorising is important for completing any outfit, so be sure that you have everything you need to finish your outfit off. For me, this means bringing the following items:
- If you are in the wedding party, talk to the bride and make sure she doesn’t want something specific before you make any purchases. If not, pick pieces that compliment your outfit and that you will wear again in the future. Also, be sure to consider how you are are going to travel with the items because necklaces have a way of getting tangled during transit. Consider a jewellery organiser like this if you are worried about transit.
- Small purse
- Tote bag
- If on the day of the wedding you are getting ready any where other than your own hotel room, you definitely need this tote bag! It’s the perfect place to keep your necessities if you are getting ready somewhere other than your room(like if you are in the bridal party).
This is the category that I almost always forget something from! Don’t be like me: make a list and double check that you have everything.
- Nail polish in whatever shade you have in for touch ups
- Nail polish remover(I recommend these little single use polish remover pads because they are great for travel)
- Perfume(consider bringing a rollerball version to keep in your purse during the wedding itself for refreshing later)
- Makeup necessities(See my go to basics here)
I have a whole post on the things you need to survive travel and there is definitely some overlap here. These are the items that you really need to survive the wedding day itself.
- Portable charger to keep your phone alive
- Protein bars or other easy snacks for while you get ready
- Safety pins
As wedding season is quickly approaching, I hope this list can help us all get through without any issues. From one misguided millennial to the world, happy wedding going!