Etiquette

What kind of gift would you bring?

auriannaaurianna
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edited December 1 in Etiquette
I got an invitation to a "bridal luncheon."

However in the invitation was an insert that mentioned the registries are on the couple's wedding website.

But the registries are:
1. One with 6 items, only three of which are under $50
2. A honeymoon registry. No.
3. A link to a go-fund-me type thing for a charity

Also, the luncheon (shower??) is in bride's and my home town but the wedding is not as they live out of state. So the insert also said if we buy a present off the registry to instead take a picture of it and wrap that and send the item to their home instead.


The couple's wedding website's registry page (which was tastefully not prominent and hidden in the "more" section) says this:

"We know traveling to a wedding can be expensive, and we will treasure your presence on our wedding day most of all.

Since we have been abundantly blessed with life's necessities and are currently working to consolidate our two households into one, our wedding registry is small.

However, we would love to celebrate this time by helping others. *stuff about the charity* - if you would like to make a small contribution to this effort, we would be thrilled."


So... I'm confused. I have a very small non-registry gift that I always intended to give her (I'm talking less than $10). Do I give her that and a gift card? Do I write her a check? I'm not going to do the honeymoon registry and I'd feel really goofy writing a card saying "I gave $20 to that go-fund-me!" Do I give her just the little gift and spend the majority of our gift money on a present for the wedding itself?

Does the fact it's a bridal luncheon sound like there may not be a present opening at all? I would thinking watching her open wrapped pictures and notes would be painful.




Re: What kind of gift would you bring?

  • Tacky! I would go with a gift card and small gift you already have. I'm also in pissy mood this morning so I will also suggest that you could show up with nothing as a luncheon is not a gift giving event.
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    I would also just give the small gift and card.
  • Luncheons are not gift giving events, so I'm equally confused.

    How close are you to this person? How close are you to the host(s)? You might just ask "is this a bridal shower or a luncheon?" And base your decision on what they say. If you're not close enough to ask, I would probably not even go, honestly. 
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  • auriannaaurianna
    Seventh Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
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    edited December 1

    It's bad right? But I really want to give the bride the benefit of the doubt here.

    Honeymoon registry aside (she might not realize the implications and problems with it), the bride is a very classy person and I genuinely believe her little blurb on her registry page about just wanting people at the wedding.

    I sort of wonder if someone offered to host the shower and the bride herself suggested a luncheon instead and then perhaps the hostess still thought to put the registry insert in the invite. It was just a slip of computer paper and not part of the actual invitation so totally possible bride hasn't seen it.

    This is what I'm going to tell myself anyway. I don't know the hostess at all.


    Thanks for the input all. Glad I wasn't alone in thinking it was weird.

    I'll just do a small gift card and my small gift. I have cute little gift card boxes so at least opening my gift won't be super boring.

  • I would give them the gift of not going, lol.

    But in all seriousness, mixed communication may have been a real possibility here. My MIL offered to throw a shower, I said no how about a lunch, and she did say something about gifts or the registry. It ended up not happening, but I had to clarify I meant I didn't want a gifty event. Give the small gift + a gift card to the store they're registered at (or somewhere like Williams Sonoma, etc)!
    redoryx
  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake
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    It sounds like they really meant well but perhaps the host(ess) failed here. Agree with PPs to just ask if this is meant to be a shower. If so, the small gift plus gift card would work. 

    I have been to one of those "open a picture of the gift" showers and it sucked, seriously sucked. 
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    ahoywedding
  • SP29SP29
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    Agree that I'd give the Bride the benefit of the doubt and put it on the host(ess) for either calling it a luncheon when it's a shower, or talking about gifts if it is not. I'm thinking the Bride may have said no to a shower because she doesn't want physical gifts, but someone still wanted to throw her a party so they went with luncheon.

    I would give a card and the small gift you have already picked out. If you were planning to give a wedding gift, you could give a larger one there (I usually give cash, which would work out in this case).
    ahoywedding
  • lovesclimbinglovesclimbing Alaska
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    I would just give the gift and a card. 

    Maybe I'm weird, but I hate gift cards, both giving and receiving. 

    For one, they know exactly how much you spent. It feels cheap to me to give a $10 gift card, but it doesn't if I buy, say, a $10 pair of earrings or a $10 bowl or a $10 scarf. 

    And, it's never the right amount. They either have to spend more to get what they want, or they have some odd amount that's never enough to buy another thing left on the card.

    And then, of course, you have to remember to use it. I have a four-year-old gift card my mom gave me that I'm finally getting around to use. And it's either enough plus some extra for one dress, or I have to spend more to get two dresses.

    We have at least a dozen gift cards I'm trying really hard to use. We had one to LLBean. I used part of it for sheets, and now the card is sitting in an envelope waiting for me to think of something we need buy. Someone gave us a Bed, Bath and Beyond one for our wedding (which was five years ago). Great, right? Well, at the time, we lived in a town that didn't even have a BBB. We've never shopped at BBB before, and we still don't have one nearby. So it's never been used waiting for me to figure out what I need and then go out of my way to get it. 

    I'm always grateful for gifts or course, but it's kind of a letdown to open a gift card. I'd much rather someone ask for ideas, and I'll give them some, and then they can get me something. 

    /end rant

  • Hostess fail, "They don't know what they don't know" - be forgiving because it could be FAR worse!..  My money would be on...  "Bride and groom aren't inviting everyone that is invited to the luncheon that M/GM/etc. is hosting and they know enough not to call it a shower even though it really is and they're not too thrilled with the bride/groom's cutting of the otherwise guest list for their family circle per traditions of old where weddings were more of a social/society/family reunion style event than otherwise..."

    The thing to remember about registries is that they're only a guideline, not a "required to purchase off of" thing.  If you don't like anything or it's over your budget, be mindful of the recipient, and get what you want to give them.  
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    short+sassy
  • I would just give the gift and a card. 

    Maybe I'm weird, but I hate gift cards, both giving and receiving. 

    For one, they know exactly how much you spent. It feels cheap to me to give a $10 gift card, but it doesn't if I buy, say, a $10 pair of earrings or a $10 bowl or a $10 scarf. 

    And, it's never the right amount. They either have to spend more to get what they want, or they have some odd amount that's never enough to buy another thing left on the card.

    And then, of course, you have to remember to use it. I have a four-year-old gift card my mom gave me that I'm finally getting around to use. And it's either enough plus some extra for one dress, or I have to spend more to get two dresses.

    We have at least a dozen gift cards I'm trying really hard to use. We had one to LLBean. I used part of it for sheets, and now the card is sitting in an envelope waiting for me to think of something we need buy. Someone gave us a Bed, Bath and Beyond one for our wedding (which was five years ago). Great, right? Well, at the time, we lived in a town that didn't even have a BBB. We've never shopped at BBB before, and we still don't have one nearby. So it's never been used waiting for me to figure out what I need and then go out of my way to get it. 

    I'm always grateful for gifts or course, but it's kind of a letdown to open a gift card. I'd much rather someone ask for ideas, and I'll give them some, and then they can get me something. 

    /end rant
    I remember having a conversation about this where popularity of gift cards can be a regional thing. For instance, I live in the Midwest (NOTE: NOT SPEAKING FOR THE ENTIRE MIDWEST) and at least here, gift cards are suuuuuuper popular to give and receive. I personally love getting them and with weddings and showers, I've definitely given them to places where the couple / parents registered so they can get all that stuff that wasn't purchased off the registry. 
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  • levioosalevioosa Southern California
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    I love gift cards. Unless they're to some off-the wall place, I'm definitely going to use them. Restaurant GC, great, now I can splurge and get an extra round of drinks or an appetizer. Sephora GC, that baby is going to be gone in one trip. Starbucks? Please save me, I'm a poor, sleep-deprived grad student. I do feel kind of weird giving them though. I try to stick to gift cards as a last resort for gifts unless there's extenuating circumstances/a known preference. For example: SO's brother is suuuuper cheap. He rarely goes out to eat. So for Christmas I usually get him and his wife a gift card to one of their favorite restaurants that will cover the cost of dinner, a round of drinks, and tip. I know they'll be excited to have a dinner out, and they'd appreciate that as much as something hand picked. 


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  • levioosa said:
    I love gift cards. Unless they're to some off-the wall place, I'm definitely going to use them. Restaurant GC, great, now I can splurge and get an extra round of drinks or an appetizer. Sephora GC, that baby is going to be gone in one trip. Starbucks? Please save me, I'm a poor, sleep-deprived grad student. I do feel kind of weird giving them though. I try to stick to gift cards as a last resort for gifts unless there's extenuating circumstances/a known preference. For example: SO's brother is suuuuper cheap. He rarely goes out to eat. So for Christmas I usually get him and his wife a gift card to one of their favorite restaurants that will cover the cost of dinner, a round of drinks, and tip. I know they'll be excited to have a dinner out, and they'd appreciate that as much as something hand picked. 
    Dumb question but can you put restaurant tips on a gift card? We've gotten a few, and I usually bring cash to leave for the tip. I never knew that was possible!
    charlotte989875
  • Dumb question but can you put restaurant tips on a gift card? We've gotten a few, and I usually bring cash to leave for the tip. I never knew that was possible!

    It's been eons since I worked at a restaurant.  It's possible to include the tip on a gift card, but the server would have to know that ahead of time in order to "charge" the correct amount to the gift card.  Unless you were giving he/she the whole gift card, with nothing left on it.

    I can't speak for all restaurants, but it usually works like this at the end of a shift:

    • $1,000 total rung up.  $1,000 needs to go to the restaurant.  The rest of all the monies is my tip. 
    • I have $1200 between cash and credit card charges, and including $50 charged to a gift card.
    • $200 cash stays in my pocket.  The restaurant gets their $1,000 from the gift card, the credit cards, and the rest of the cash.
    With all that said, I also typically pay the tip with cash.  It just makes it more "clean" for me.  But it depends.  If I'd be left with a gift card that would only have some pittance on it, like $3, and I want to tip $5, I'd tell the server to charge the whole gift card and then I'd leave an extra $2 for the tip.
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    charlotte989875
  • Dumb question but can you put restaurant tips on a gift card? We've gotten a few, and I usually bring cash to leave for the tip. I never knew that was possible!

    It's been eons since I worked at a restaurant.  It's possible to include the tip on a gift card, but the server would have to know that ahead of time in order to "charge" the correct amount to the gift card.  Unless you were giving he/she the whole gift card, with nothing left on it.

    I can't speak for all restaurants, but it usually works like this at the end of a shift:

    • $1,000 total rung up.  $1,000 needs to go to the restaurant.  The rest of all the monies is my tip. 
    • I have $1200 between cash and credit card charges, and including $50 charged to a gift card.
    • $200 cash stays in my pocket.  The restaurant gets their $1,000 from the gift card, the credit cards, and the rest of the cash.
    With all that said, I also typically pay the tip with cash.  It just makes it more "clean" for me.  But it depends.  If I'd be left with a gift card that would only have some pittance on it, like $3, and I want to tip $5, I'd tell the server to charge the whole gift card and then I'd leave an extra $2 for the tip.
    Ahhh gotcha, thank you!!
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    Depending on where I'm shopping, I like gift cards too. My favorite gifts are gift cards from Barnes & Noble.
  • EvilSockLadyEvilSockLady
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    edited December 4
    DD because I logged in with the alt I made back two years ago when my login wasn't working.....
  • MesmrEwe said:
    Hostess fail, "They don't know what they don't know" - be forgiving because it could be FAR worse!..  My money would be on...  "Bride and groom aren't inviting everyone that is invited to the luncheon that M/GM/etc. is hosting and they know enough not to call it a shower even though it really is and they're not too thrilled with the bride/groom's cutting of the otherwise guest list for their family circle per traditions of old where weddings were more of a social/society/family reunion style event than otherwise..."

    The thing to remember about registries is that they're only a guideline, not a "required to purchase off of" thing.  If you don't like anything or it's over your budget, be mindful of the recipient, and get what you want to give them.  
    @MesmrEwe am I reading this as your thinking there's a possibility not everyone invited to the luncheon is invited to the wedding?

    The bride is a high school friend who I was close with at the time but her job has taken her primarily out of the country so we don't keep in close contact anymore. However despite that I was honestly considering finding a weekend sitter and spending the $1000 that would likely be involved to go to this wedding (it's out of state).

    But the wedding is now 8.5 weeks away and I never got a save the date. I know STDs aren't mandatory and invites shouldn't go out until 8 weeks. But a few of us other high school friends were talking and we're all waiting on pulling the trigger for plane tickets until we know for 100% sure we're invited to this wedding.

    Now you've got me worried...
    MesmrEwe
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