Wedding gift etiquette can be tricky. If you’re on a tight budget, are you still expected to buy a pricy present? Is cash an acceptable gift? If so, how much? To ease your mind, we’ve provided answers to the most common and pressing etiquette questions below.
What kind of gifts do I buy for the bridal shower?
Bridal showers generally consist of intimate friends, family, and members of the wedding party. Given the tight-knit nature of these gatherings, gifts are intended to be memorable more so than expensive or showy. Sentimental gifts or humorous (but tasteful) gag gifts will leave warm impressions that everyone will remember for years to come.
Take a look at these great bridal shower gifts for some ideas:
- This newlyweds cookbook
- Personalized cutting boards and kitchenware
- Throws or blankets with embroidered initials
- These custom pillowcases for him and her
- A personalized doormat
As far as price ranges are concerned, $25-$75 is a good guideline. Remember, the bridal shower is more about the experience than the gift itself, so don’t stress too much if your present doesn’t measure up to your wedding gift.
What kind of gifts do I buy for the wedding?
The real question is, should you stray from the registry? Unless you are close to the bride and groom, you should stick to the items they’ve registered on their list. If you are not sure which items they need, check the couple’s wedding site for registry updates, or check the brick-and-mortar locations for which items have yet to be purchased.
Still not sure what gifts to purchase? Check out these 10 Foolproof Wedding Gift Ideas.
How much am I expected to give?
A considerate wedding couple will compile a registry list with the guest’s budget in mind; not everyone can afford $400 sterling silver kitchenware. To avoid pressuring guests to give beyond their means, a fair registry will list items anywhere between $25-$200+. Purchase the items you can afford, and know that your gift is contributing to a newly wed’s next phase of life together.
Can I give cash as a wedding gift?
If you plan on giving cash as a gift, the amount you are expected to give will vary depending on your relationship with the wedding party. To give you an idea of what amount is appropriate for you, check the table below:
|Guests||Minimum Amount||Suggested Maximum|
Of course, these amounts are not definitive; it’s up to you to gauge your means and the wedding party’s expectations of their guests. If you do decide to give a cash gift, be sure you mail a check to the couple’s address, or hand it to them on their wedding day.
If you’re bringing a plus-one, do they provide a wedding gift? This depends on your date’s relationship with the wedding party: are they acquainted? If so, then go in on a gift together; if not, then you should take care of the gift yourself.
Do I buy a gift if I’m in the wedding party?
Usually, groomsmen and bridesmaids spend a considerable amount on wedding arrangements, wedding attire, and pre-wedding parties or events, so whether or not you are responsible to bring a wedding gift depends on your group. Some wedding parties opt for pitching in on one expensive gift, like opulent jewellery for a bride, or a swanky watch for the groom.
If your fellow groomsmen or bridesmaids have not yet determined what to do about a wedding gift, then consider preparing one yourself. Bringing a card with a bottle of the couple-to-be’s favorite vintage is always a safe bet.
When do I send my wedding gift?
Traditionally, guests have up until one year after the wedding ceremony to send a gift. If you want to purchase your gift before the wedding, then you should give yourself at least two months ahead of the big day. This may sound excessive, but a 2-month buffer ensures that the item has plenty of time to ship, which leads us to the next question:
Should you bring your gift to the wedding?
You should always have the gift sent to the address of the bride and groom. Think about it: no one wants to lug around bulky boxes after a ceremony or have to worry about them during the reception.
What is expected of me at a destination wedding?
While destination weddings promise a lot of unforgettable memories, they also ask a lot of the guests. Nevertheless, providing a wedding gift is implicit with the invitation and your confirmation to attend. If you are spending a pretty penny on airfare and lodging, it’s understandable if you cannot afford a pricy gift, but you should still bring something, be it a small cash donation or a congratulatory card.
In the event that the wedding party requests no gifts, you should still bring something just to avoid a potential faux pas. A small and inexpensive gift should be fine.
Buying a wedding gift doesn’t have to be complicated; in fact, if you stick to the advice above, the process is simple. Hopefully, this will assist you in selecting the perfect present in the future.
If you have any questions, please comment below!