How to (Politely) Ask for Cash as a Wedding Gift

A small toy bride and groom standing on stacks of cash.

Some people thrive on receiving gifts. They want all the stuff, but you—not so much. Traditional wedding gifts can be a problem, especially if you two already live together. They are also usually unnecessary if you and your partner are older or are combining two established households together. Whatever your reasoning, it’s totally acceptable to ask for cash instead of gifts, but how do you do it without offending? Here are some tips on how to beat the cash-only scaries.

Be Straightforward

Not sure how to phrase your request for monetary gifts at your wedding? Any template like “The couple asks that you thoughtfully give cash as your wedding gift due to etc.” is a good choice when it comes to wording your request. It’s not harsh, yet it’s straight to the point. You want to be careful here not to be unclear. You’re letting your guests know your preferences. The best way to communicate this without any confusion is to be straightforward.

Once you’ve simply and politely stated that you’d prefer to receive monetary wedding gifts, you can elaborate further about the why. This is where you really get to bring it home. Invite guests to feel generous by letting them in on how important money over another frying pan will be for you as a couple. Open up a bit about why you’re asking for cash. Again, it’s all about how you phrase it to people. Your guests’ money will do more than just go in your pockets. Make it clear how much their monetary gift means to you and your partner.

Use Your Invites to Spread the Word

So where should you put your request for monetary gifts? You’ll need to give people ample time before the wedding so they don’t go out and buy yet another set of glass bowls. You may choose to place this request on your save-the-dates or the actual invitation itself. It’s important to ensure your request and information reaches all of your guests in a timely manner.

Start a Honeymoon Fund

A sandy beach with the words

An easy way to show guests where their gift money is going is to start a honeymoon fund. You can build a fund on sites designated for this exact thing. Some enable you to write out a little story about why you chose a particular destination and what you’ll do there. Guests can contribute to the overall cost of the vacation, or purchase specific items you can enjoy while there, such as activities, a bottle of champagne, or special meals. Don’t be afraid to let your guests in on exactly why the trip is important. This trip marks the start of life as a married couple, so guests will want to be a part of making it the best trip ever for you.

Talk Distance

An airplane driving through a heart-shaped cloud.

A great way to skirt around asking for money simply because you’d prefer it is to claim distance. Of course, this only works if you and your partner live far away from where your ceremony will take place. This is true for any couple having a destination wedding or for those who choose to get married in a hometown they no longer live in. You simply won’t be able to take physical gifts onto the plane with you, and paying for shipping will be an additional burden of cost to you. From the guest perspective, it can make total sense! Most people will understand the logistics of travel and will not want to add to your trouble. If you emphasize the fact that cash will be easier, the request won’t come across as brusque.

Make a Suggestion Instead of a Request

If you’re afraid to outright ask for monetary gifts instead of traditional registry items, you can always just make the suggestion of cash. On your save-the-dates and invitations, you can place a nice line like, “monetary gifts encouraged.” This way, you’re not vetoing traditional gifts, but simply encouraging guests to give money. This could be the best of both worlds if you don’t mind receiving some gifts and have a small registry. Those who want to bring cash do, but your suggestion leaves room for those who are really looking forward to bringing you their homemade salad tongs. If you’re really afraid of cramping the guests’ style, this is the route for you.

The truth is, most guests are more than happy to give money, either in the form of a check, donation to a honeymoon fund, or a gift card. Some were planning on doing it already. Even if there are a special few that feel hindered by the request, most guests don’t want to give you something you won’t enjoy. Those who may get offended will usually be close family or friends who were planning a more personal gift. No matter what, if you do your best to let guests know your preferences and say it in a kind way, chances are you’ll come out on the other side without another toaster oven or ugly dish towel collection.

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