Wedding Customs & Traditions Forum

Opinions on the Money Dance?

I'm from the South and until my best friend, who's from PA, got married a few years ago I had never heard of the "Money Dance" tradition. WIth all the strong opinions on honeymoon registries, etc... I am just curious what people think of this? Personally, I was horrified when she told me she was planning to to do it....I thought it was the tackiest thing I had ever heard of! Needless to say, FI and I won't be having one at our wedding! :)

Re: Opinions on the Money Dance?

  • I find it very tacky. I never hear of it until I came to the Knot. Then FI actually suggested it, since I guess he's seen a few of his family members have one. I definitely chose to put my foot down there!

    Even women who say it's a cultural tradition in their family - when they skip it, by and large, the guests don't notice or care. Just because something is accepted in your area doesn't make it good etiquette.
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  • When I read The Jungle in my junior year of high school at the wedding they had a money dance, so there really is a cultural background to it and the way it was explained made sense to me and it didnt come across as tacky because the couple was in a new country and had very little money and that was the only wedding gifts they got but I dont think that just because its tradition it should be done anymore. There arent really couples that are in the type of situation that the tradition was started for. I would never do it at my wedding and I wouldnt particpate in at someone else's wedding either.
  • They're awful~whether they're "cultural" or not.  IMO, it's a terrible faux pas to ask guests, who have already given up their day, perhaps had to travel and pay for lodging, purchase a new outfit, and buy shower and/or wedding gifts to pay for the "privilege" of dancing with you.

    Weddings are not fundraisers, and should not be treated as one.  You might as well be selling wrapping paper or girl scout cookies if you're having a $$ dance.  it's essentially the same thing.
    "Trix, it's what they/our parents wanted. Why so judgemental? And why is your wedding date over a year and a half ago? And why do you not have a groom's name? And why have you posted over 12,000 posts? And why do you always say mean things to brides?" palegirl146
  • They are a dance full of suck.  I traveled to attend your wedding.  Got dressed up.  Bought a gift.  The least you could do is dance with me for free.
  • I personally find them tacky, and I'm from an area where they're considered "acceptable".

    I never have cash on me at a wedding (My "nice" purse is pretty tiny, so I can pretty much only fit an ID, my car key and cell phone in there-no room for a wallet), so things like cash bar and dollar dances/money games (Cuz, yeah, I've seen that, too) just make me feel uncomfortable because I just don't have anything to give.

    Also, something about "dancing for money" just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.


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  • I am from PA, and while they are/were common here, we are not doing one. I don't like it at all. My mom was actually the first in the family years ago to refuse to do it. I think it caused some hoopla at first (What? No Money Dance? GASP!) But she put her foot down on it. So thankfully, they don't care that we're not doing one!

    Crosswalk
  • Yes, money dances are not received well on The Knot.  But, it all depends on what happens in your neck of the wood.  I've been a guest at weddings that included a money dance (or dollar dance) and no one was ever offended.  It all depends on the norm in your area.  No one is forced to give you money and people seem to think it's fun.  To each their own.
  • it's considered tacky where I'm from.
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  • Ugh I went to a wedding in Binghamton NY and saw it for the first time after hearing about it on the Knot for so long. It lasted for an HOUR. That was an hour where people who werent participating were just sitting around. It was awful and really tacky- esp when the bride bragged to me that she got $800 from it.
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  • For the chic that got the kindle for Christmas or whatever...

    The money dance that comes from a Spanish tradition that is really called the dolar bailar and it has traveled to America and the way my mom explained it to me they did this bc ppl could not afford buying expensive gift in the old days...

    And who cares what you got for Christmas this is a wedding site not a site for stuck up snobs to so off Christmas gifts and I woulbe far from jealous of you
  • It may be tacky to some people but it is tradition in my fiance and I's cultural and I find it harsh for people to say its tacky especially since you know nothing about the tradition...It comes from the Spanish tradition in and around Central America that has traveled to North America and there it is not called the money dance it is called the Dolar Bailar and no I did not spell dollar wrong.and the way my mom explained it to me is they did this back in the day bc people did not have the money to buy gifts or things like that so they gave dolars and the spanish love to dance... so the next time you say something is tacky think about your traditions that you dont think are tacky. I mean have some respect or atleast know where it comes from...this is my opinion
  • It is true about what you said Angel. if the person does not know about the traditions/customs or even the meaning of anything they should'nt open their mouth and say anything. I come from a latin background myself and I was thought not descriminate anyone by their culture, color.customs or even background. The dollar dance is something that not everyone will do because of their up bringing. this is more for does couple that their guests and families knows that they are in need of extra money  to finish paying the wedding or to take to their honeymoon. Its all up to the couple to decide if they want to do it or not, its not mandetory in any case. we are going to do it at our wedding not because we need the money but because its tradition. Have fun!
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited December 2009
    Others will tell you that it is a Polish custom that symbolizes the bride's virtue.  She was to hold a fabric coin purse and men would drop coins in it for the dance.  The longer her coin purse lasted, the more virtuous she was supposed to be. 

    In any event, people will always have an excuse why it is ok for them to do something normally considered rude to their guests.  Asking for money is tacky across the board.  If you want to do it, that's your perogative, but you can be sure people will have an opinion.
  • I personally would never do one because it's not tradition in my family/culture, but I think it's rude for people to call it tacky if it IS part of a bride's family traditions or culture.  If someone's mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, etc. had one, should that person have to do away with tradition because she is worried people will call her tacky!?  Now if someone were doing it just to get the money and not because it's a long-standing tradition, that could be considered in poor taste.
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
     If someone's mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, etc. had one, should that person have to do away with tradition because she is worried people will call her tacky!? 

    My grandmother, mother, etc, all got drunk before their ceremonies.  It would still be tacky if I did that.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_customs-traditions_opinions-money-dance?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:36Discussion:2b736770-043c-45d9-a43b-3cbfff7e2c7dPost:41e36c37-2410-4896-a4c1-0e538a6213f9">Re: Opinions on the Money Dance?</a>:
    [QUOTE]F And who cares what you got for Christmas this is a wedding site not a site for stuck up snobs to so off Christmas gifts and I woulbe far from jealous of you
    Posted by Angel6-30-08[/QUOTE]

    Wow.
  • It isn ot a tradiotion in my family but in my FH's it is. My mother in law bought me a beautiful silk bag for the money and I honestly thought it was a wine bottle holder! I did keep the bag (as a garment bag!) but respectfully advised her I would prefer not to have yet another interruption in the festivities to which she was perfectly fine with, I agree that each persons traditions are their own and you should have respect when it comes to that. Just be tactful in your replies, people have feelings you know...just because its not YOUR tradition, doesnt mean its not important to someone else.
  • Yes, it is traditional in some countries/families/etc. However.....

    *Most guests are not familiar with it unless they are part of the culture/family, and a lot of people who aren't familiar look at it like some of the pp's (and myself, too, frankly!)- yet another request for money.
    *People don't bring tons of cash to a wedding- maybe a few bucks to tip the bartender or valet or something. People don't want to hand over the only $20 in their wallet.
    *You waste at least 20 minutes of your reception dancing with strange men/women who line up to dance with you for 30 seconds.
    *When, as MOH, I had to hold the $ at my best friends wedding last year, I could not tell you how embarrassing it was for me to take money from people. And explain what the dollar dance was all about. And say "No, I cannot make change."

    All of this is really not worth it for an extra $100 or so.

    If I were to do it, I would make it like the Polish tradition where you would give guests a coin or something to drop in a bag.
  • My fiance is really uncomfortable with the dancing part of our wedding. We decided instead of a money dance, that we would get a money tree. Where we live when you go to a wedding there is either a money dance or a money tree. Hopefully this helps. Roo
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