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Wedding Gift Etiquette

All About Wedding Gift Etiquette

When a friend or family member is getting married, we all know that it is appropriate to send a gift, but few of us know the dos and don’ts of proper wedding gift etiquette. For instance, anyone who receives an invitation to the wedding should send a gift, whether or not they are able to attend the actual wedding. The fact that the bride and groom have invited you to spend such a momentous day with them means that in some way you are a special person in their lives.

One of the most important rules of wedding gift etiquette is never to ask for a wedding gift.  There is never any time when this is appropriate. It is also a no-no to mention a gift registry on a wedding invitation. The registry should be passed along by word of mouth only. Many people think that all that is necessary in giving a wedding gift is to print out the registry list and pick out what they want to give. Today, with everyone connected to the internet, it has become incredibly easy to send registry gifts. Many stores have their own online registries where you can see the list, pick out and order the gift in a manner of minutes. You can even check to make sure the gift hasn’t been picked by another person. While this makes gift-giving easier, it is still your responsibility to put some thought into the gift, and if you can, to do something to make it more personal. You should also not feel bound by a gift registry. You can pick out any gift you wish to give.

Many people become concerned about how much money to spend on a wedding gift. It is not connected to how much the couple is spending on your dinner. Wedding gift etiquette does not demand that a certain amount of money be spent on the gift. Take your financial situation into account and give a gift that you can afford to give. There should be no low or high limits set on wedding gifts and no need to try to equal or outdo another person’s gift. If you are the bride or the groom, you should accept every gift with appreciation.

Don’t wait too long to send your wedding gift. While wedding gift etiquette has traditionally held that you have a full year to send your wedding gift, it is not appropriate to wait that long. If at all possible, the gift should be sent before the wedding or taken to the wedding. If there are legitimate reasons that this is impossible, don’t let more than three months pass without sending your gift, and the sooner the better.

Sometimes a gift table is set up at the reception where guests can leave their gifts. If this is the case, the bride and groom should pick someone, or more than one person, to gather these gifts and take care of them. Most often these are opened after the couple gets back from their honeymoon. Whether you place the envelope on the gift table or deliver it in another way, it is totally appropriate to give a gift of money.

Finally, wedding gift etiquette demands that you send thank you notes for every gift. And, if for any reason, the wedding is cancelled, all wedding gifts must be returned.




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