When Is a Wedding Gift Not Necessary?

For destination weddings where you’re paying for airfare and hotels, is a gift still required?

Every week, our resident experts Mindy Lockard and Coryanne Ettiene answer etiquette questions from modern day hosts, offering advice from both traditional and contemporary perspectives.

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This week’s question: I've been invited to a destination wedding. Do I still have to send a gift, even though we're to pay for airfare and the fancy hotel?  

Mindy: This is tricky. First of all, keep in mind that if you can’t afford to attend the wedding, it’s OK to regret. Whether you choose to attend or not, the gift should be sent ahead to the bride’s home. If you do choose to make the investment, the gift can be something small but thoughtful from the registry. Gifts given, no matter the size or cost, should be graciously accepted and appreciated.

Coryanne: Often times, the wedding couple will forgo the registry, knowing that everyone coming to their destination wedding will be spending a lot of money attending the festivities and see your attendance at the wedding as their gift.

However, if you are looking to send a gift, the best gift is one that captures the heart of the celebration, like a framed photo or a keepsake from the destination. Another gesture would be to send a food basket to their home the day they return from their honeymoon. I like to send breakfast baskets, as there is nothing more enjoyable than waking up to freshly baked muffins delivered straight to your door.

About Our Experts: Mindy Lockard is The Gracious Girl and offers traditional etiquette advice with a modern, gracious twist. Coryanne Ettiene believes entertaining at home should be an everyday affair; she shares contemporary advice for modern living at Housewife Bliss.

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