How to word a 'no gifts request' in wedding invitation?

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 17
3471 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - The Gables Inn, Santa Rosa, CA

lunaman:  I personally wouldn’t include anything.  If someone wants to get you a gift, they will – if you aren’t registered anywhere, then they’ll likely give cash, etc. instead without being “instructed” to do so.  

As for gifts you recieve and don’t have space for – this is what return policies are for.  Most stores are happy to return items for store credit (and if you have no reason to ever shop there again – save the credit for the holidays and use it then). 

Any “formal” or written mention of gifts will end up rubbing some people the wrong way.  Personally, I’d jsut skip it all together and let your guests do what feels best for them.  

Post # 18
9839 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

There is no polite way to mention gifts on a wedding invitation, even if you’re saying “no gifts”. It’s presumptuous. I would just not register. You can return for cash/store credit or donate anything else that youre given. I think being from a cash giving culture is all the more reason NOT to ask for cash. You’re then instructing them how to follow their own cultural codes and traditions which is again, rude. 

Post # 19
63 posts
Worker bee

I’ve seen a couple of wedding invites state “no boxed gifts please” aka cash, you could do that.

Post # 21
660 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

lunaman:  We had a similar situation, so on our website we said something like, “We don’t have a registry. If you really want to give something, please consider making a donation to charity in our honour.” That headed off pretty much all physical gifts (except a few small sentimental things), and our friends actually listened. Aunts and uncles gave money anyway.

Post # 22
7372 posts
Busy Beekeeper


If you really don’t want gifts: Tell them you have everything you need. If they persist, suggest that they buy themself a gift and that would make you happiest.

If you really want cash: Sorry, I got nothing.

But please for the love of all things holy, no poems.

Post # 23
4213 posts
Honey bee

Just don’t say anything and if asked say you don’t need anything. People will get the hint.

Post # 24
9410 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

No mention of gifts is appropriate on an invitation, including “no gifts.” 

Obviously you shouldn’t register, but contrary to what some people are implying, this does not hint that you want money. All it says that you are not thinking about gifts or the expectation of gifts at all. 

If you want to spread the word through close friends or family, they can tell people who ask that you have everything you need but they know you are saving for X.  

People have the prerogative to give a gift, though, and if they do, you should always thank them graciously. If you really have no need for the item, you can always return it, sell it, or give it away. 

Post # 25
6107 posts
Bee Keeper


LOL, those terrible poems…..

And I hate the honeyfund idea too. Hate it . If I was asked for that , I would give them a large ugly vase . At the airport  .

Post # 26
12885 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Just say nothing.  People will get the hint that you want cash.  Mentioning gifts at all is rude.  People will bring you something, whether its a physical gift or cash — and at that point, you can decide if you want to try to return or donate a physical gift.  

Post # 27
46255 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Don’t register for anything. If guests give you something, use it as an upgrade and get rid of the original or return the gift for store credit.

Post # 28
525 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

My friend did not have a wedding registry & she said 75% of guests gave them cash or gift cards to places. I think it’s tacky to ask for cash, no matter what the wording is. But if you don’t register at all, then guests may take a hint.

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