On what is referred to as many as the week of love, I thought it’s important to write a piece that has been on my mind for a while. I love giving gifts, this is a well-known fact and as someone that puts a lot of thought and effort into gifting, I am intuitive when it come to getting something perfect for a friend or family member. What happens though when the wedding invite drops through the door with the line “cash only no gifts”?

Giving a gift……

Firstly, from a wedding gifting perspective I am always inclined to give cash, because it’s practical and currently most people have all the kettles, toasters and monogrammed towels they need. Couples now live and love together for many years before their nuptials therefore the traditional method of gifting may be outdated. Particularly in Ireland, the shift to cash gifts is partly a response to lifestyle changes. Many more couples are living together for years before they tie the knot and postponing getting married in general. There is no actual obligation on someone to give a gift, let alone cold hard cash. For many people attending a wedding, it is expensive, very often requiring an overnight stay in a hotel and an outfit and hair and makeup, sometimes a tux rental too, depending on the formality of the day. Sometimes there is a second day of celebrations which can result in more hotel stays and time away.

Financing the big day…

I have heard of people that diligently fill out spreadsheets with the cash gifts from friends, versus their invite lists, and there is an expectation of around €200 to €250 per couple, and €150 for a single invite, if you are coming alone. What you gift the couple should be exclusively dependent on your relationship to the happy couple, as well as your own means. No guest should feel as though they need to overextend themselves with the gift. Personally, I find it off-putting getting the request for cash, and thus far it has only happened once, blatantly, with many times hints been given at the hen or before that they only wanted cash. Personally, I find it a little uncouth and uncomfortable. Even though I usually give cash, I just feel added pressure when you are told to.

Destination weddings…

 

What happens when you decide to head to sunnier climes? Are you expected to stuff an envelope with cash as well as pay for your flights and hotel? There are no hard and fast rules, there is a general understanding that your presence at the wedding can absolutely be their gift. You must remember that guests are possibly taking time off from work and arranging childcare, so they’ve already invested quite a bit. With, if an attendee chooses to gift them in addition to being there, then that’s fine, but usually there is no obligation.

 

 

I guess it is up to you, your partner and your guests ultimately. I think putting cash only on the invite is perhaps a bridge too far.