(Closed) Charity Donations instead of registry…Rude?

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
1715 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I dont think its rude. I think its important however to choose a chairty with lots of meaning to you as a couple and a family.

Post # 4
4126 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

I think this is a great idea.  I know people who have done it and give a little something to honor the couple.  If they don’t agree with the charity then they wont give and they may end getting you a gift.

Post # 5
674 posts
Busy bee

I think the first thing you’ll hear from many folks is that some people consider putting any kind of gift information on the invitation to be very rude. It indicates that you expect a gift rather than simply being gracious about someone choosing to give you a gift. I know that I come from a background where this would absolutely turn people off.

On the charity note, it’s a tough position. On one hand, it’s a gift for you, so what matters to you is important. On the other hand, it does presume an awful lot to expect that people will be okay with giving to any charity you choose. There are even “feel good” charities that do work people don’t approve of or utilize their funds in a way that people don’t approve.

Why not just forego the registry and leave it at that? If people want to give you a gift, they will. Most likely they will choose money if there’s no guide to gifts. If you want to donate that money, that’s your business.

Post # 6
2494 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

There are LOTS of Bees on both sides of the charity fence. Some feel it is rude (most because they don’t like the fact a donation has to be made to a specific charity) and others think it is completely acceptable. I am on the “fine by me” side!

I think to appease everyone, perhaps you could either:

A. Request a donation to a specific charity with a short paragraph indicating why that is important to you two, as a couple. I.E. I might choose the Canadian Cancer Foundation because all of my grandparents have been afflicted/died from a variety of cancers. That way it isn’t just “a charity” but your guests can see it’s importance.

B. Request a donation to a charity, but don’t list any. This way guests can take the $100 they were going to give to you and donate it to a charity that they feel is meaningful, themselves. For example, my friend might donate to a single mothers or church foundation, and I would likely donate to the CCF.

Post # 7
6 posts
  • Wedding: April 2013

I love the idea of donations to charity rather than gifts, and I believe that charity should be something that you and your fiance believe in. My fiance and I are big in fundraising for both breast cancer research and St. Baldrick’s, so I would have people donate to either of those two if I went with this idea. It might be a good idea to give people an option between two or three charities.

I don’t plan on creating a registry either. My fiance and I have been together for 9 years (we’re actually getting married on our 10th anniversary), we have two kids, a house, and definitely don’t feel like we need people to give us anything. I know there will be people who want to give us some sort of gift, so what I am doing is creating a honeymoon registry where people can make donations towards our honeymoon. The link for it will be posted on our wedding website. The two sites that I’ve looked at are Honeyfund.com and Depositagift.com.

I am definitely not going to have a bridal shower either. It’s pointless.


Post # 8
1715 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I would not put the info on the wedding invite but instead on a wedding website.

Post # 9
13010 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I would not make any mention of gifts on an invitation. 

Additionally, I have established charities that I already support and wouldn’t take as well to someone telling me where to do my charitable giving.  I understand the idea behind it, but I would find being told where to do charity as offensive, even if it’s not meant that way.

Post # 10
1925 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I think it’s a great idea, just don’t put it on the invite.  We’re asking people to donate to Equality California, an organization that fights for marriage equality in the state of California.  I know some of our guests will be offended by this, but honestly I’m offended that gay marriage isn’t legal!  If a guest doesn’t want to give me a gift becuase of it, I’m fine with that.  But if I can get married, I want all of my friends to have that choice!

Post # 11
2073 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Don’t put any registry info on the invitations.  Honestly, I wouldn’t feel comfortable donating to a charity as wedding gift.  There are so many different charities out there and it is so hard to find one that all of your guests would be willing to support.  It’s wonderful you want to donate to a charity you are passionate about.  WHy not forgo a registry all together and just donate any monetary gifts you receive yourselves after the wedding?  

Post # 12
2697 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

You can always give people a choice of charities to donate to:

One everyone can agree on being a good thing, unless they are crazy

One important to you as a couple, could be percieved as controversial by some?


Post # 13
705 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

The idea is not rude but definitely don’t put anything on the invite or in the invitation packet.  If you’re doing a wedsite, put the request there in the registry section.  Say something like “We love our friends and family and are excited to celebrate with you.  Gifts are customary for weddings but our family has everything that we need and we’d prefer that if you were to be generous enough to send us a gift, that you would instead give a gift to those in need.  Here is a list of charities that we like for your convenience:”


Make sure that you research the charities on the list and that they are decent organizations that use the donations for good things.  Many do not, so do your homework.  Suggestions would be to donate to local food banks, homeless shelters and women’s shelters as well as the SPCA and Red Cross.

ETA:  You could also do something where people bring in ‘gifts’ to the wedding and the gifts are then donated to a women’s shelter or somewhere else that needs clothes, toys and household goods.  So add in “If you’d like to bring a physical gift, you can bring new or gently used household items, clothes and children’s toys to the wedding and we will drop them off for you at the women’s shelter.  Non perishable food items will be dropped off at the food bank.”

Post # 14
11356 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2009

I agree with @abbie017:.  There is no polite manner in which to mention gifts — even the absence of them — on an invitation.  Also, charitable giving is a very personal decision, and I do not believe that a wedding is an appropriate venue for encouraging guests to donate to a specific cause.

Post # 15
3265 posts
Sugar bee

@NellyB:  It will always be impolite to mention gifts (even no gifts) in anyway on the invitation.

Charity is also a very personal issue.  I would not donate to a charity that a couple suggested, if it didn’t meet the criteria I use to select to gets my money.

If you do not register you will probably get majority of cash gifts, but you may want to consider a small registry of items that are either consumables (like sheets, towels) or kitchen gadgets that can be purchased for those who don’t give cash.  If not you will end up with guests who definitely want to give you something for the occasion.

I take a lot of pride in selecting the “perfect” gift when attending a wedding.  The gifting process is also enjoyable to me as the giver, not just the recipient for getting stuff.

Post # 16
1798 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I agree with PP: Registry should never be on the invite and charitable giving is very personal. As a guest, I probably wouldn’t participate in a charity registry and would either give you cash or some household gift. Since your family members have already said it’s a bad idea, it is very likely that others in your family and social circle won’t like it either. Can you compromise by making a small registry of upgrades for household items and donating any cash you receive to the charity of your choice (privately)?

The topic ‘Charity Donations instead of registry…Rude?’ is closed to new replies.

Find Amazing Vendors