Thank you notes to people who didn't send a gift? With a poll!

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Did you send a thank you note to every guest?
    Only to guests who sent a gift. : (70 votes)
    47 %
    To all my guests, even if they didn't send a gift. : (74 votes)
    50 %
    I have a cramp in my hand, and am still working on my thank yous! : (4 votes)
    3 %
  • Post # 2
    Member
    2455 posts
    Buzzing bee

    Gwendolyn88:  Etiquette says that technically the reception is the thank you for showing and that thank you notes are for gifts.

    However, I’m having a 20-25 person wedding and only hosting dinner and drinks after so I’ll send everyone a thank you. It’s mine and his immediate family and they are the kind of people that expect a thank you note for attending (and we were brought up to send thank yous for all sorts of things; gifts, letting us crash for a weekend, hosting a party, w/e).

    Post # 3
    Member
    2791 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2015 - Walnut Hill Bed & Breakfast

    I probbably will not. I don’t have time to cross reference my gift list with my guest list. Send the thank you when you get a gift.  Now… if say a bridesmaid, groomsmen, or family member who helped out a lot with crafts/cookies/whatever didn’t get me a gift I will send them a thank you for being there and all the helping that they did.

    Post # 4
    Member
    458 posts
    Helper bee

    I haven’t had my wedding yet, but I think I will send everyone who comes a thank-you; they weren’t expected to get me a gift, nor to come at all, and I know that they will be taking time out of their schedules to celebrate with me.  It’s the least I can do.

    Post # 5
    Member
    1847 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    I sent everyone a thank-you that at least gave us a card, even if there was no money or anything in it. I hate to say it, but the night went so fast and was such a blur, I didn’t even think to go back through the gift/card list and see if anyone was missing…

    So basically I agree 100% with amberback.

    Post # 6
    Member
    3223 posts
    Sugar bee

    You’ve asked for the correct etiquette which will probably differ from the results of your poll, as many people do not know, or care to follow correct etiquette.  (that is not a criticism but a statement of fact).

    In terms of etiquette, you only send a thank you note for a gift.  To do otherwise can be seen as fishing for gifts.

    Post # 7
    Member
    11 posts
    Newbee

    Gwendolyn88:  I only sent for people who gave us gifts. Three bridesmaids did not give us anything. I included a “thanks for being a bridesmaid” card in their bridesmaid gifts, so I felt sending another thank you was not necessary. Also – they have up to a year to give you a gift, so sending one could get weird if they still send you another gift and you have to resend another thank you. 

    Post # 9
    Member
    720 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    Gwendolyn88:  I plan to send everyone a thank you card (once they are ordered as we are waiting on our pictures from our photographer to put on the front….these were included in our package) even if they didn’t give us a gift. We didn’t expect anything from anyone other than to come out and have a good time and celebrate with us. We had about 80-90 people attend the wedding though so for me its not so bad when it comes to sending out Thank you’s. I just hope our pictures come back soon so we can get the cards ordered and I can start on them! 

    Post # 10
    Member
    4410 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2010

    andielovesj is right. You thank people in person for coming, and you’ve also thrown a lovely party for them to enjoy; sending a thank-you note is not only not necessary, but it can make people feel pressured to buy you a gift (which many people wait until after the wedding to do anyway).

     

    Post # 11
    Member
    2871 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

     

    andielovesj:  +10,000

    First off, I would not be able to tell you for sure everyone who attended our wedding with a gun to my head.  Some people who RSVPed didn’t show, some showed without RSVPing.   We didn’t have a guest book traditional, but even with one, it’s unlikely to be a complete, accurate record. 

    On top of it, it just feels gift grabby to me.  Those people who didn’t get you anything know they didn’t get you anything.  They are either already going to feel guilty about not getting you anything, or if they don’t, they won’t care about a Thank You card.  Most likely, even those that don’t feel guilty will feel like you are calling them out for not getting you a gift. 

    We had one person give us a card without money at our wedding.  While I have a great guess as to who it was, they signed it “from your favorite cousin,” when I have 50 cousins.  Who would actually be considered my “favorite cousin” because we are close in age and grew up together, did get us a gift.  It’s kind of easy to see that they felt a bit guilty about not getting a gift.  If it is that cousin, they are having money trouble, and I wouldn’t dare send them anything that even tangentally implied that I expected or wanted a gift. 

    Lastly, writing thank you cards for gifts is hard enough to do with out feeling forced after the first dozen “Thank you for the gift of $100.  We will use it for X. It was great seeing you at our wedding.”  Writing one for just attending is going to feel even more forced unless you are very close to the person.

    The only time I would send them is if you had a smaller, destination wedding where people had to shell out to travel, and you are absolutly sure of everyone that was there. 

    Post # 12
    Member
    16 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: March 2015

    I’ve been to 2 weddings in the past six months, both times my FI and I have given moderately expensive gifts and didn’t receive a Thank You card or even a verbal “thank you” from either couple. Thank You cards should be given at least to anyone who brought a gift but I will be giving them to everyone who shows up personally.

    I’m also planning on including thank you notes with our favours, that might be an easier idea. And don’t worry about them being too late, I’d be made up if I received a belated thank you note from the couples we bought gifts for.

    EDIT: Something like these would be easier to do than handwritten notes.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by  MultiCat.
    Post # 13
    Member
    16 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: March 2015

    Misswhowedding:  That’s a good point, OP you might accidentally send a thank you note to someone who didn’t even turn up. Unless you took attendance!

    I would then send thank you notes to anyone who brought a gift or gave you a card.

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