General Etiquette > general

Rude to not give a wedding gift?

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I can't imagine being invited to a wedding and not getting the HC anything at all. At the very least, a card with a note in it will convey my congratulations to them without putting me back more than a few dollars. If they took the time to plan the wedding and extend an invitation to them, I think you owe them at least that token. If you can't afford an actual gift, or don't know them well enough to feel comfortable buying one, that's perfectly fine, but don't come completely empty-handed.

My suspicion is that a lot of the people commenting on that article had a little nudge to their own conscience there.  I wonder if they are among the ones who come empty-handed to a wedding.  Yes, it's true that there might be additional things you've given a gift for, such as a shower or other event.  However, the usual practice is to give a more token gift for the shower and then a "real" gift for the actual wedding (not necessarily more expensive - just more of the "main" gift).  So the argument that "oh, I already gave them something" - as one person said - doesn't hold water.

I agree with this:

--- Quote ---Gifts are by definition optional.  However, the giving or not giving of a gift sends a message.  I think this couple was sent some pretty hurtful messages from their friends and family who did not give them a card at the least.
--- End quote ---

A card isn't expensive, but still shows the couple that you care.  And it's something the couple can keep and treasure as a reminder of a special day with those they love.

Two Ravens:
I thought etiquette did require you to give a gift if you attend a wedding? It did not have to be an expensive gift, but some type of gift was necessary...

Outdoor Girl:
I could not go to a wedding and not give the happy couple *something*.  If I was broke, I'd make something.  I make dishclothes so I could make a bunch of those for cheap, buy a cheap kitchen things and have something that cost me less than $20.

If someone was truly broke, I would still expect them to at least write a nice note.  It could be on lined paper, in a plain envelope but they should give something of themselves, if they can't afford to buy anything.

If you aren't willing to acknowledge the marriage in any way, why did you go?

Two Ravens:
Miss Manners weighs in here:
Relevant quote:

--- Quote ---There is no such thing as an invoice for a wedding present. Neither a wedding invitation nor a formal announcement constitutes that. You give a wedding present because you want to indicate symbolically that you care about the couple.

Yes, there is a catch. That is that you should not be attending a wedding if you do not care about the couple (either truly, or because they are relatives and you are supposed to care), and therefore wedding guests give wedding presents. If you decline the invitation, or if you are not invited but receive an announcement, all that is required is that you send the couple good wishes.
--- End quote ---


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