Giving a Wedding Present: The Etiquette You Should Know

Get to know these simple guidelines when it comes to giving a wedding gift.


Expectations

When a Gift is Expected
If you are invited to the wedding, even if you cannot attend, it is customary to give a gift. It can be a bit confusing if there are a number of events surrounding the wedding that involve gifts, like the bridal shower. So, does one gift cover everything? Not usually. In particular, the bridal shower is a distinct celebration for the bride and, therefore, it requires one gift for her and another for the couple upon their wedding.

When You Do Not Need to Give a Present
If you receive an announcement that a couple was married or has become engaged, there is no obligation to send a gift. Although, some people choose to anyway. In some cases, couples make it expressly clear that they do not want gifts. This will generally be in writing, sometimes on the invitation. In this case, respect the couples wishes even if you are tempted to ignore their request.


Spending

A Personal Choice
You won't find an ironclad answer to the question of how much to spend on a wedding gift. It is a decision you alone should make based on what you feel comfortable with.

The Budget Approach
From the moment a wedding invite is received, some can't help but start calculating costs. If you're the practical type, consider the idea of setting a budget for the couple. The amount you choose should account for each gift you anticipate to give surrounding the wedding festivities. This can include the bachelorette and bachelor parties, the bridal shower, and the wedding itself.

Destination Weddings
In the event of a destination wedding, you're already expected to spend on travel in order to be a part of the celebration. It is usually safe to assume that a less expensive gift is acceptable in this situation.


Timing

The One-Year Window
You have one year from the date of the wedding to give a gift, so don't panic if you haven't come up with something yet. A gift can be sent or be given in person - it is not required that the gift be brought to the wedding itself.