Post # 1
Over and over again, it’s mentioned that gifts are lovely but not to be expected. Which has left me wondering – how many people attend weddings without giving anything at all? For the purposes of the poll, I’ve separated “card” from “gift” because I’m curious to see if there’s a difference between the groups. (At our wedding, we had one couple who, had they attended, would have used the “our presence is our present” approach, combined with a card, since they are dirt poor PhD students. However, they had another engagement and were unable to attend, so they sent us a gift. I would have preferred the former.)
Post # 3
I usually try to give something no matter what. If I didn’t have a lot of money, I would probably try to give something inexpensive.
Post # 4
I always give a gift. But that’s my “love language”, to be cheesy and best-seller-self-helpy.
Post # 5
If I were invited to a wedding I would give a gift/money/gift card, even if I don’t attend. Even during my poor grad student days, I would still give something. However, I don’t expect people to give us gifts for our wedding.
Post # 6
I have attended several weddings where I didn’t bring a gift. On some occasions, I brought a card but most of time I didn’t bring a gift because I couldn’t afford one at the time. If I can afford it, I will do my best to buy a gift. Otherwise, I will just send a card.
Post # 7
One wedding that I went to right after college I was unable to afford a gift so I just gave them a card. I spent about $400 just getting to their wedding…so I just gave them a nice card wishing them well. Other than that every wedding I have given gifts!
Post # 8
@Ms.Teddy: That same reasoning is why our PhD-pursuing friends give cards when they attend. They’re out in NM, whereas the rest of us are primarily in Pittsburgh or DC. They end up spending way more to attend than almost everyone else in our social circle. And like I said, we would have much rather had them and a card than no them and a gift.
Post # 9
@redherring: Only once did I not give a gift, only a card, and it was a wedding that involved flights, rental car, lodging, etc. I apologized to the bride and she was so gracious and insistent I NOT get them a gift because I traveled so far, etc. I still felt guilty about it for awhile as I’ve given gifts for other weddings I traveled to. I’m the type of person who buys $100+ gifts for couples who say “no gifts” with their invitation as that’s what’s in my heart to do so. I haven’t been to many weddings so it’s only been just close friends whose weddings I get invited to. THat said, I never knew how rare that was to give a nice gift to those who say “no gifts” and I put “no gifts” on my wedding invitation as we had a lot of out of town guests with travel costs. No way did I want them to also feel they had to spend money on a gift. However. I didn’t necessarily feel that way about our local guests, but there was no dignified way to say travelers no gifts please but local guests can get us such and such. So I left it as no gifts and stupid as it sounds I was shocked we got, well, almost no gifts from our 100 guests. And 1/3 gave not even a card! These are 40’s-50’s mid-career professional people too. It was an eyeopener how much I had projected my sense of etiquette on others and I’m still recovering from the shock! I read the other posts about some think an empty card is redundant if you’re going to a wedding – I don’t, but that’s me. I would have really appreciated an “empty” card with a heartfelt message than nothing at all. Verbal thanks are just too ephemeral especially on such a whirlwind day.
Post # 10
I always give a gift… always have, always will.
Post # 11
@Catbride: I see you’re new around these parts – welcome to Weddingbee 🙂 I’m also the sort of person who gives a gift, no matter what. Even for casual parties, I tend to bring some sort of host/hostess gift (unless it’s someone I see all the time). It would be foreign to me to attend an event like a wedding without bringing at least a card. The couple is grateful to have you there, hence the invitation to the event. And I assume you are grateful to be there, hence a gift or a card expressing your well wishes for the couple.
Post # 12
There have been times where I’ve given a gift AFTER the wedding (i’ll always make up for my procrastination by giving a more generous gift!). But I have always given a gift if I’m invited to a wedding.
Post # 13
I definitely think you should give SOMETHING, even if it’s the $7 oil caddy from target they registered for. And if you REALLY can’t afford anything, fold a piece of paper, make it into a little card by coloring a pleasant picture on the front and give all your love and wishes for the couple… They definitely understand! Many of my friends didn’t give a gift for my wedding, and several didn’t even give me a card and I have to say I was a little hurt because even though I understood that they couldn’t really afford anything, I would have appreciated just an “I love you, wish you the best” etc..
Post # 14
I may have had to wait do to financial circumstances, but I always give one eventually, even if it is small.
Post # 15
Well my situation might be a little different. I went to a good friends wedding and didn’t bring anything. I was young and had no idea about wedding etiquette..I did however give them a gift at the bridal shower. At the time money was tight and I couldn’t afford two gifts, not to mention I had no idea I was supposed to give a card and money at the actual wedding. Oops:)
Post # 16
i live on the east coast and most of my friends/family are on the west coast, so every wedding i’ve been to has involved minimum of $500 in flights and accomodations alone. if i can’t afford to do that AND get a gift, i don’t go to the wedding. i couldn’t imagine not giving a gift.