(Closed) When guests do not bring gifts to the wedding

posted 5 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 47
305 posts
Helper bee

Honestly I think it is super rude when a guest brings no gift to a wedding.

Post # 48
2622 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - Hogarths, Solihull

I couldn’t imagine not giving a gift for a Wedding. 

Then again, I’m obsessive with cards and gifts. I send cards for everything! I’m just trying to think back to our engagement party… I think most people got us a gift (which we weren’t expecting as it was a surprise party and we’d already had lots of gifts when we GOT engaged the month before!) but I sent Thank You cards to everyone who came regardless.

I forgot to take a card to my neighbour’s Wedding the other week and I felt SO bad about it, until I remembered that she is literally next door but one so we just popped it through the letterbox when we got home. 

We’re telling people that we don’t expect gifts, but my family are pretty traditional so we are registering (mainly I want to run around John Lewis with a scanner gun LOL). Although we’ve lived together for a few years and our house is already bursting at the seams, we could do with ‘upgrading’ certain things that we’ve had from day one.

I’d be pretty upset not to even get a card though. I like cards – in the UK we can even send cards online so you don’t even have to go out and buy one; they’ll even type your message inside. With that at your fingertips, I don’t understand how anyone could justify not spending £3 when they’re getting either an expensive plated meal (day guests £100/head) or an evening buffet (£40/head).


Post # 49
441 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

I don’t know, I’m the type of person who doesn’t even like to go over to someone’s house for dinner without bringing along a bottle of wine or flowers. I can’t imagine attending a wedding and not giving anything.

I didn’t make out a percentage, so I’m not really sure how many of our guests didn’t give anything. I’m sure a few people didn’t give anything, but I just think it’s a waste of energy to focus on that. The people who did gift us with things (mostly cash) were super generous and in the end I was really happy with how the day turned out and all the people who were there. The people who never give gifts – well, you know who they are before inviting them to a wedding. And the people who just randomly didn’t give anything may have more going on in their lives than you know.

Post # 50
987 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Weddings are becoming a big thing now. People often have to use vacation time, spend money on travel and hotel just to attend.  Plus, you never really know what’s going on financially with someone.  I can’t believe how selfish some people on this board are. You’d almost think they were getting married to get gifts rather than to make a public commitment to the person they love surrounded by people they love. 

Post # 51
318 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I wouldn’t expect any gifts at our wedding as we know it will cost them all something to attend,be it travel or taking a day off work (which considering we both come from poor backgrounds we understand that’s a bit of an ask in itself and I struggle to accept gifts from anyone when I know how long they would have saved for it or it won’t have left them much in their pay that month) . I guess I see it that you should accept that yes you spent your money on that guest being there but their presence should be what makes you happy not getting a gift from them if it isn’t it then why bother inviting them. My mum and step dad got 10 gifts and some cards out of 100 guests but was never particularly upset about it. 

Post # 52
14145 posts
Honey Beekeeper

I’ve already said that giving a wedding gift is very customary. But that has nothing to do with covering the costs of entertaining and feeding you, the infamous ” cover the plate” philosophy. Gifts are meant to symbolize the relationship and mark the occasion with sentiment. For their part, people should host what they can afford. 

Weddings are not fundraisers.  

Post # 53
9 posts
  • Wedding: June 2017

I 100% think if your invited to a wedding, whether family close friend whatever the very least you should take with you is card, i wouldnt dare show my face empty handed, to be fair you are normally given more than enough notice about a wedding to set a few quid aside. 

Giving nothing at all i think is very very rude.

Post # 54
504 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2018 - Vineyard Lake

I’m not getting married so that I can redecorate my home or stock my cupboards. It was OUR decision to get married as well what kind of wedding or how much we spend on the reception and we’re not inviting people based on what kind of gift they will give. I just want the people we care about to come out, celebrate our day with us & have as much fun as possible. I will surely not be keeping track of who does or does not bring us what! That is a terrible way to live! Guess that’s why my SO & I are so happy…

You don’t know what anybody else’s financial situation is either.

Post # 55
2412 posts
Buzzing bee

When we were married, my DH’s wealthiest relative “gifted” us with a $25 check.

Moral- “Never Expect Anything From a Pig But a Grunt” and move on.

Post # 56
549 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: Backyard

We requested that guests make a donation to the cause of their choice rather than giving us a gift. Only four followed through with this, which was a little disappointing. We were thrilled with the gifts we did receive though. Mostly, we were vwey happy with just having our guests there. Nothing can tarnish how incredible of an experience that was. Having experienced poverty, there have been many times that I have been unable to give gifts. I guess that makes it difficult to fathom expecting gifts, much less being upset when people don’t bring them.

Post # 57
178 posts
Blushing bee

My sister had about 60 guests and everybody gifted something.

I think if at my wedding there were guests who didn’t even bring a card would in fact be seen differently from then on. Being invited to a wedding is something very special as most people have a guest limit (due to finances or space or whatever). That means, they picked you over somebody else to attend.  

It’s okay not to have (much) money to spend but then you could at least bring a card or a bottle of wine (There’s wine for 10 bucks that tastes fantastic). Friends of mine were tight on money so they gifted a card in which they invited the newly-weds to a self cooked dinner after the wedding stress once would be faded.

When my sister didn’t have money for a present (She just got her 2nd baby and they had to pay for a hotel room and drive 400 miles to attend) she and her husband gifted the couple sand and a second hand baby-sandbox on which they wrote the congrats and wishes for the couple (they had a babyson themselves).  That must have been not even 20 bucks but it looked so sweet! 

(btw, this has nothing to do with the topic, but i find it really interesting to see different opinions on this topic, especially on gifting money. Where I’m from it’s common to ‘gift what you approximately cost’ and if you have it, you put something on top)  

Post # 59
149 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

I think it’s the way I was raised, but I find it very tacky to go to a wedding and not bring a gift or card. Even if we already bought something off of the registry, we still would bring a congratulations card. 

Post # 60
2290 posts
Buzzing bee

View original reply
sweatergal007 :  No, I just sent thank you’s to people who gave gifts. Some gave gifts with no name attached, so I tried to track those people down and send thank you’s, but there was 1 gift no one claimed so no card was sent.

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