Post # 1
Background: I was a Bridesmaid or Best Man for a wedding earlier this summer and the B&G were severely cutting costs wherever possible, which sacrificed the quality of their wedding. Their families are affluent and they are working professionals, so money was not an issue for them. They served cold pizza and warm pop at a friend’s tiny shared apartment for their rehearsal dinner, omitted programs and seating charts/cards, and hired a photographer when they didn’t even like how their e-pics turned out, but because he was cheap. The wedding party didn’t get thank you gifts/a card, but instead there was supposed to be a lunch which has been cancelled twice and still hasn’t been rescheduled yet. As concerned about etiquette and how their entire day would turn out as the BMs were, we survived the day and eventually put it all behind us.
Then today, Darling Husband and I received an e-mail thank you note from the B&G. It was 3 short sentences that sounded like it was copied and pasted, with a picture attached. While it didn’t bug Darling Husband at all, this was another slap in the face for me, mainly because I saw how little effort the couple put into making their wedding enjoyable for their guests, how they requested cash gifts, and other things that etiquette gurus would shake their heads at.
My question is: am I overreacting to getting their thank you note electronically? Am I too biased based on the other things they did for their wedding?
Post # 3
I don’t like the thought of an emailed thank you note. It doesn’t sound very personal…but that’s just me…..
Post # 4
I was a Bridesmaid or Best Man in a friend’s wedding and didn’t receive a thank you gift/card and the rehearsal dinner was kinda cheap, but I knew it was the best they could do so I never thought twice about it. If you know your friend could do more and are purposefully being cheap, I would be offended.
An email thank you never seems appropriate though. Regardless of money. A sheet of paper is cheap and you can hand it to a person for free. That’s a little ridiculous to me.
Post # 5
I would be upset too. Thank you notes aren’t expensive–they don’t have to be fancy. I do think it is important that they are hand-written, otherwise it really looks cut-and-paste and not like a genuine thank you.
The only caveat I have is if this was a very eco-friendly couple/wedding. But then, I would mention on the email that they sending the email as a way to save the environment. AND the note would be personalized, not just a three sentence generic thank you.
Post # 6
There are some etiquette rules that I think are okay to be broken, but it sounds like this B&G broke a lot of ones that should have been followed!
I think Thank-You notes should absolutely come in the mail and not on your computer. It would be one thing if they truly did not have the money to buy cards/stamps (although it seems like this would be a pretty extreme situation). Even then, they should write a long and personalized email not a short cookie-cutter email.
I don’t think you are being too biased. If they really couldn’t afford to get the bridal party gifts (which sounds like wasn’t the case), they could have at the very least given cards to show their appreciation. I would be frustrated too!
Post # 7
Generally speaking, I would be okay with an emailed thank you note, especially if I knew the bride and groom were on a tight budget. (By the way – please don’t assume that because they both are professionals and their familes are affluent, they had tons of cash to spend on their wedding. You never really know what kind of expenses other people have in their lives. It’s possible that they are paying off major student loans, or saving for something important for their future.)
Another thing I actually like about emailed thank you’s – they are more environmentally conscious. They don’t require wasting paper on a card and envelope that in all likelihood is going to go into the garbage at the end of the day.
I would however, expect the thank you note to be personalized, regardless of whether it was sent electronically or by mail.
Post # 8
@Bubu82: I respectfully disagree. The amount of time/money that a guest put into attending their wedding should be acknowledged appropiatly. Email is not appropiate. Regardless of financial standing thank you notes should be put into the budget. They are as important to the wedding as an invitation.
I have written several posts on thank you notes and the lack of etiquette in this subject. Handwritten and mailed. Not acceptable in any other form i.e. a photocard w/nothing written on it
And calling something “enviromentally conscious” is giving us that are really eco-conscious a bad name. The name for it is lazy.
Post # 9
@Bubu82: I completely agree with you about never assuming anything financially. But in this case I actually knew what they had to spend.
I think the part that bothered me the most about this is that I don’t think they put the effort into thanking their guests and wedding party. The e-mail part doesn’t bother me as much any more as long as there is some kind of personalized message. But I wouldn’t do it if I had the choice.
Post # 10
@baletrina: Just because you think it’s lazy does not mean that an electronic thank you is not more environmentally conscious. Your argument is about etiquette – which is a matter of opinion, by the way, not law. My opinion is that an electronic thank you is fine, yours is that it is not. Good thing we’re allowed to think differently.
@ritsi_bitsi: I agree the message should have been personalized, as I said in my previous post.
Post # 11
The only time I would think it would be OK is if it were a long, obviously individualized thank you email that addressed very specific things about the guest and their relationship to the bride and groom. And then maybe attach some pictures that are, again, individualized to the guest.
I would prefer this to the handwritten note that is equivalent to your email that you received that is obviously the same thank you sentence as everyother one they wrote.
However it is done, thought an effort must be evident in it and it doesnt seem like yours had that so I would be upset as well as a bridesmaid.
Post # 12
A virtual thank you is appropriate for a virtual gift. I think a tangible thank you should be sent for a tangible gift.
Though I would put in the caveat that if everything else about the wedding was green (local venue, with arranged carpools, local sustainable food choices, no disposible cutlery/plates) basically no waste I would be on board.
But I think too often people who go all out and have tons on waste at their wedding, try to use the “won’t someone think of the baby seals” argument when it comes to thank yous.
Post # 13
I said other. When it comes to weddings, I think some extra personal effort should be expended in saying thank you by writing a personal hand written note. When it comes to other occasions, I don’t see any problem with e-mail thank you’s. I probably would be ok with an e-mail thank you from a wedding IF and only if it was very personal and not a copy paste form letter. A copy paste email form letter just tells me that I am not AT ALL important to the people who sent it to me.
Post # 14
I’m do email invites and email thank yous. My wedding is as paperlessas possible. At least I’m sending thank yous.
Post # 15
I think knowing the background here, it’s just more proof of how tacky they are about their wedding. The electronic thank you is eco-friendly and CHEAP and at least you did get a thank you, but when it’s suspiciously cut and pasted and not even very personal?? That’s the line there. They didn’t even try to make it personalized to the recipient which makes me think they just didn’t care.
Post # 16
@vmec:i think the difference with you is that you are consciously trying to have a paperless or mostly paperless wedding for the sole reason for saving trees…not to just be cheap and lazy and copy and paste half a paragraph into an email.
I was once at a wedding where I know for sure that the parents gave a large budget for the wedding. What they did was host the wedding on a Friday afternoon so that everyone had to lose a days pay at work to go, and then have a full priced bar which served premium liquor at $6.25 a drink. After saving on having a cheaper reception due to it being Friday, with a full priced bar (not even wine on the table) they pocketed probably 50% of the so called wedding money given to them by the parents.
On top if this – we got the thank you cards 10 months late and though they were mailed and handwritten they were 2 liners and not personal. After all that, they could have at least written the cards out before 10 months after the wedding and the notes could have been personal. I guess I would have preferred an email about 9 months before that card if it would have at least thanked us for the gift we bought them specifically and not “thanks for your gift, nice to have you there”. If I knew they were broke or were actually doing it to save a small forest, I’d be a-ok with it. If they’d have done it after the way they held their wedding, I would have been really insulted as it would have been clear it was a cheap cop out.