Are Goodie Bags Necessary?

​Some parents question whether goodie bags are optional. One parent asked on Quora it if is rude not to give them. It depends on what the common practice is among your child’s social circle. It also depends on your budget. Hey….The bags aren’t free. The writer at The Mother List even argues we may be teaching our kids the wrong thing by expecting to receive a goodie bag rather than focusing on giving a present to celebrate the birthday child. She goes on to share that so often the contents are plastic items that just end up in the trash.

When Did it Start and Can it be Positive?

Some of it is just out of tradition. According to the Snack Dinner Blogger, people have been giving out goodie (y) bags in one form or another since at least around 1895. It may have evolved from giving out wrapped up slices of cake to departing guests.

If you choose to give out goodie bags then spin it in a positive way. View it as a way to teach our kids how to express appreciation to our guests. Think of it like the favors that wedding couples give out to guests. It says, “You are important in my life and I want to say thank you with a gift.” This means that you deliberately involve the birthday child in the process of creating the bags or at least have her or him help hand them out to the guests.

Gift Alternitives to Goodie Bags

Kira Lewis over on the Sunshine and Hurricanes blog suggests 10 Alternatives To Birthday Goodie Bags That Aren’t Junk. Of the ideas she shares, my favorites are…

  1. Give away a book. She shares some inexpensive options.
  2. Party activity or craft.  This results in something they make and take home as a keepsake.
  3. Tree in a box. This is my absolute favorite.

DYI Goodie Bags

If you want to do this then you can buy them pre-made, or make them yourself. Places like Walmart, Target, and Dollar Tree sell party favors, candy and other fun items you can include in the loot bag. Note that the content selections and quality at these retailers is not as good as what you will find at a specialty store like Party City. The trade off is that the variety and quality of the party favors you will get come at a higher price in the specialty stores.

I spoke to a birthday mom who told me she spent time driving around shopping for these content for her goodie bags and then spent between $60-$70 on the bags and favors to include in them. On top of that she dreaded the time it was going to take her to sort everything into enough goodie bags for all of the expected guests to the birthday party. You can cut out the drive time buy using online sites that will build a bag for you and ship it to you. Partypalooza does this for you.

Pre-made Goodie Bags

I’ve got a better solution if you are in the Raleigh or Triangle Area of North Carolina. Why not let me do the work for you? My birthday magic shows can include Magic Goodie Boxes that are already made for you. Don’t waste the time and gas driving around to various places and then sit for an hour to put all of this stuff together. My Magic Goodie Boxes include toys, candy and magic tricks. You won’t get a light weight flimsy party favor gift bag from me. Nope. My boxes are packed with fun stuff to keep most kids busy and happy for a while. 

It’s better that you give out the goody bags as the party guests are leaving for home. This one move will result in less mess for you to clean up once the crowd has gone. Another reason is in case the contents are different, then the kids won’t see what the others are getting. Lastly, the guest parents may have a more peaceful drive home as the kids explore the fun items in their goodie box.

Goodie Bags

Fantastic Magic Goodie Boxes are better than goodie bags.


We buy the contents for these party bags in bulk from a variety of suppliers and package these to help enhance the quality of your party and to save you a headache. Some of my birthday magic show packages even come with magic goodie boxes included.

Ok…so how do you get these boxes and/or how do you feature a fantastic magic show for your kids birthday party? And how much do these party favors they cost? For a price quote in under 10 minutes, contact me by using this link for my contact page, or call me at 919-391-8113. If we can’t get to the phone, we’ll return your call within a few business hours. 

Related Article: Benefits Of Creative Childhood Activities

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