It’s complicated to talk about the etiquette of gift giving at weddings. From what I learned on Weddingbee, it’s not correct to include your registry info in your invitations; guests are expected to inquire about it themselves, but it’s also not acceptable for guests to show up without a gift. As an outsider this is a bit complicated, but hey, if it works…
Gifts were not something Mr. Toadstool and I had in mind at first; it took us a few months to realize we might get something out of this wedding.
Registries are not that common around here. There are only three stores in town that offer registries, and two of them are Walmart and Sam’s Club, which, let me tell you, are not that convenient. They don’t have the same kind of stuff they have in the US and are mainly grocery stores, so it is not like they offer a lot.
The third option is a department store, with a lot of variety and, sadly, huge prices. It’s the fancy-pants store in town and, although not everything is expensive, some people think it is, so it’s widely known some will not even look at the registry, thinking they can’t afford anything you ask for; they’ll just gift you anything they want.
There’s of course the convenient and, though controversial, quite common option around here, asking for money gifts.
Image via The Wedding Planning Institute
Mrs. Boa Constrictor already went through this; she talked about how asking for money instead of gifts is not frowned upon on Puerto Rico, and it is certainly not frowned upon in my little Mexican corner (not sure about the rest of the country). It is quite new; it started as an odd request and it escalated to being now expected. You’re asking for money gifts, right?
So what to do? The registry is a risky bet, because a lot of people might choose to ignore it, but apparently some people expect us (or want us) to register. But so many people comment on how convenient it is for both guests and the couple to gift money, especially for us since we will not be living in the place we’re getting married at.
Oh, and the suggestion of not putting anything and expecting guests to get the hint? We were instructed (by several people) not to do that—people take it as a hint they can get creative and “We’ll end up with three blenders, five toasters, and more towels than we can use in a lifetime” (their words). Apparently people here expect some kind of direction.
Mr. Toadstool and I talked about it and decided to go with the flow. The trend right now is to add a little line suggesting the couple would prefer a money gift, but we’ll also attach the registry card, just in case.
Are guests expected to give a gift? Who are we kidding—to some point they are, and the internet (and real life) is full of brides complaining about guests not giving a gift. Will our guests be put on the side of the road with a sign reading “I didn’t gift anything at the Toadstool wedding” if they don’t give a gift? No. We’re not inviting them so they can give us a gift—we’re inviting them ’cause we want them there, but if they want to (and can) gift us something, they’ll know our suggestions.
How did/will you handle gift-giving at your wedding?