Wedding season is about to be in full-force, and if you’re already collecting invitations to all the festivities, you aren’t alone. It’s a seriously busy time of year, and it’s not all weddings. There are graduations, birthdays, and holidays like Easter and Mother’s Day. Calendars fill up quickly this time of year, and it’s no surprise that people sometimes have to send their regrets in response to a wedding invitation. But should you still send a gift to a wedding you can’t attend? You were invited, and you can’t make it. But does that mean you send a gift anyway?
Well, short answer? Yes. "Even if you can’t attend, you should still send a wedding gift," April Masini, relationship and etiquette expert tells Elite Daily. "You were invited because the couple felt you were special to them, and that feeling doesn’t change if you can’t attend. Absolutely send something. If you don’t, it is a show of bad manners."
When you think about it, most couples have to make a conscious decision about whether or not to invite certain people. So, if you were sent an invitation, that means the couple took the time to decide that they wanted you there on their special day. Sending a gift is a kind gesture that recognizes this fact.
Now, obviously it might not be financially feasible for you to send a $300 blender or stand mixer, that’s OK! "If money is tight, that’s no excuse!" Masini says. "The price of a gift is way less important than the fact that you are doing something to celebrate a wedding."
However, if money is an issue, Masini also offers some solid advice on how to send a thoughtful wedding gift without breaking the bank. "You can give someone something from their wedding registry, or you can chip in with friends to purchase something off the registry," she explains. "You can also go rogue and buy something that is not on the registry, or even do something like make them a beautiful dinner, or host a cocktail party for them when they get back from their honeymoon, or offer your services as a babysitter if they have kids, or a dog sitter, if they have a pet."
At the end of the day, "The amount you spend on a gift is less important than simply showing your happiness and warmth towards their new marriage. Whether it’s money, a gift certificate, a registry item something you’ve made, or something you buy that is not on the registry — a wedding present is important, and when in doubt, give." Whoever is getting married is embarking on a huge, new chapter in their life, and you sending a card or a candle could mean more to them than you might think.
Even if you can’t make it to all of your friends’ weddings, try sending them a gift. As Masini says, it will mean a lot, and they’ll definitely appreciate it. You could even treat them to dinner after the wedding, as a way to celebrate their love. There are a million possibilities, and it truly is the thought that counts.
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