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For many couples, how to go about informing guests about your registry can prove a daunting task. You don’t want to feel like you’re asking for gifts, but you also know that guests want to know where you’re registered because it makes things easier for them.
Remember: most of your friends and family want to get you something that you actually want and won’t return. In fact, the ‘return factor’ can actually stir up a lot of angst for guests who want to buy you the perfect gift that you’ll always remember them for; no one wants to get you something you don’t like, won’t use or that causes you more headaches. At the same time, you have to keep in mind that although your wedding is currently the center of your universe, it is not the center of theirs, and simply making the arrangements to be at your wedding can be consuming enough, so you want to make details like buying your gift as easy and accessible as possible.
Now, I’m not one of those people that has a long list of wedding etiquette rules that one must follow, but there is one that is pretty consistent across most cultures and geographical groups of people, and that is: do not put your registry information on the invitations. (I say most, because there are a few parts of the world where this is standard practice, and if you are from there, you know the drill. However, when in doubt, don’t do it.) The focus of the invitation is supposed to be on the wedding and not the expectation of a gift, even though, yes, that would be the easiest and most obvious place.
So what are the best ways to share your registry tactfully and make it easy on guests?
Create a wedding website: The simplest and most effective place for your registry information is on your wedding website. Today wedding websites are welcomed and considered a normal and convenient accessory to the wedding. With so many services offering them for free with tools that help you and guests stay organized, why not? They are the perfect place for all the wedding details, and, bonus, can often be helpful for guests if they forget the invitation at home. Wedding websites are great (and green!) because you can email them around every time you have an update.
Add an insert to your Invitation: Adding an insert to your invitation is a perfect way to provide your guests with other important wedding details that don’t belong on the invitation. Include the URL to your wedding website with a note that it will be updated frequently with the latest and greatest as you near the Big Day – you can even get specific about the kind of information they can find there to give a clue that this is where they’ll find the registry details. You can also include things like driving directions, attire, if you have any rules about children etc. on the insert. If you think you have a large number of guests who are not so hip to the Internet, then you can include your registry information as well, but ideally if you don’t have to specify it and can leave it to the wedding website, that is best
Inform your immediate family & others involved in the wedding: Make sure that those closest to you have the registry information handy because often they will receive the phone calls from guests with questions about what to get you. These people could range from your parents, to your siblings, to your wedding party. If you have any strong preferences, make sure they are aware and know what to communicate.
Shower invitations are acceptable places to share the registry: Whether you’re having a traditional bridal shower or a co-ed Jack n’ Jill, showers are typically an occasion to literally shower the guest of honor with gifts unless the host specifies otherwise. Since this is often the main event and people attending want to bring something, they’ll need this information handy. The invitation is an acceptable place because someone else is throwing the shower for you, so in effect, they are the ones telling guests where you are registered, not you.
—Dana Ostomel, Deposit a Gift
How Should We Tell Our Guests That We're Postponing Our Wedding?
Courtesy of Cheree Berry Paper
The one thing that’s guaranteed about life? Nothing is guaranteed. That means all sorts of unpredictable things that you can’t plan for are lurking around every turn—including your wedding. While no couple ever wants to, sometimes all that unpredictability means you might have to postpone your wedding because, well, something has come up!
There are so many reasons a wedding date might be changed, from a natural disaster impacting the venue to a family emergency requiring your immediate attention. And these events aren’t always last-minute: A major hurricane could mean finding a new venue altogether, or a global pandemic could prohibit international travel and impact everything from the wedding venue to your date and guest list.
So what should you do if this happens to you? First, it's important to tell people you’re changing the date as soon as you know it must be done. "If you know you are postponing, the most responsible thing to do is tell your guests right away," says Stefanie Cove of Stefanie Cove & Co. "I suggest an email to get them the information as soon as possible."
Stefanie Cove is the founder of Stefanie Cove and Co. She is based in Los Angeles and specializes in planning weddings and social events around the world.
Below, our experts share how to break the news and get back on your guests’ calendars. Because when postponing a wedding, it's important to let your loved ones know that you'd still love them to join you—just on a different date!
Some couples include a line on their RSVP card asking guests to describe their food allergies or restrictions. Others encourage guests to inform the bride and groom about food preferences via phone or email. Having this information on hand allows you to make informed decisions when picking appetizers, entrພs, and desserts.
After learning about guests&apos dietary restrictions, the bride and groom can work with their caterer to create a suitable menu. Caterers have professional culinary training, so they can whip up entrພs that work with any type of diet. Additionally, your caterer can plate and serve the food in a way that prevents cross-contamination between dishes.
How to ask for Money Instead of Gifts From Your Wedding Guests
Years ago newlyweds needed wedding gifts to help fill their new home. Whereas, nowadays this isn’t always the case.
It’s not uncommon for couples to have already flown the nest before tieing the knot. This usually means they’ve got all the generic wedding presents, toasters and the like.
So, unsurprisingly, more and more couples are asking for money instead of gifts from their wedding guests.
Most couples fund their weddings themselves, so naturally, things get a little tighter than usual, the thought of recouping some of the wedding expense is often appealing. This is because, it can help them to cover the cost of loft conversion in London or any other renovations they decide to undertake for their new house.
In any case, although most young couples have enough homeware they may be after something else. For example, a down payment on a new house or money towards their honeymoon. The last thing any bride needs is another kettle!
So, with all that in mind, how do you politely ask for money instead of gifts? Brides-to-be can sometimes feel a tad awkward approaching this issue, but don’t worry we’ve got you covered. To develop the skill of eloquence you could also use tok essay writing service.
Without further ado, let’s dive on in.
Should We Still Register?
Unfortunately, you’ll always have a few sticks in the mud who think asking for cash is tacky (frankly, that’s their problem).
In anticipation of this, you might want to consider putting together a modest registry for these guests.
How Do I Let Guests Know?
Traditionally, guests reach out to members of the wedding party and close family members for registry information.
Tell Your Wedding Guests Where Their Monies Going
If you’re asking guests for money, they’ll probably want to know what you’re putting it towards. Not because their nosey (although undoubtedly some of them will be), but because people love knowing how they’re contributing to your new life together.
Here are a few ideas for where this money could go
- The honeymoon
- A deposit for a house
- Preparations for a baby
- A car
- A charity that means a lot to you and your partner.
If those ideas struck a chord with you, you might want to use one of the following wedding gift companies
- Buy Our Honeymoon- this is where guests can but specific parts of your honeymoon. For example, a dinner out or an excursion, etc.
- Patchwork- this allows friends and family to contribute cash towards virtually anything you and your partner want. Similarly, to ‘Buy Our Honeymoon’ your guests can purchase what you need bit by bit. Plus, Patchwork uses beautiful visuals to show buyers each gift (this is ideal because your wedding guests will love feeling involved).
- Hatch My House- This allows you to ‘register’ for a deposit on a house or for a home renovation project.
These wedding gift companies provide an easy way of storing your money while communicating to guests how their generosity will be spent – whats not to love!
Honesty is Sometimes the Best Policy
Writing a simple request for cash at the bottom of your invites is a straightforward way to ask for money instead of gifts.
This should be handled both delicately and politely. Luckily for you, we have a couple of templates to help you with this
‘Having you at our special day is all we could hope for. However, if you’re thinking of buying us a gift, we would be grateful for a small cash donation towards our [insert what you’re spending the money on]’
‘While your attendance at our wedding is all we request, if you want to buy us a gift we’ve registered a small list at [instert who you’ve registered with]. However, any monetary contributions towards our future plans would be greatly appreciated’.
One of the classiest ways to request cash instead of a gift is to utilize the medium of poetry.
By this we mean, insert a poem inside your wedding invitations. If you’re the creative type, you could put pen to paper and craft your own Alternatively, please feel free to use one of the below
‘If you’re considering giving a gift to help us on our way,
The contribution of cash would really make our day!’
‘We’re getting married, and we just can’t wait,
We had an inkling this would happen on our very first date.
Our home is already jam-packed full of accessories,
So we didn’t think a wedding gift list would be necessary.
Yet, if you wanted to give something to help us on our way,
A bit of money in a card would really make our day!’
‘Our home is bursting with stuff,
From toasters to kettles, we’ve definitely got enough!
Instead of more plates, we’d appreciate some cash,
To help us book our honeymoon so we can go in a dash.
A fun-filled city break would do just the trick,
The moment we can afford it, we’ll get on that plane quick!’
A Couple of Practicalities to Consider
If you decide to ask your guests for cash instead of presents, we recommend providing a well-labeled box in a visible location. This provides the perfect place for guests to safely put their gifts.
Needless to say, you should send thank you cards when you return home from your honeymoon. This goes a long way and is a lovely reminder of your special day.
We hope this has helped give you a few ideas on how to handle this situation. You’ll be surprised at how many of your guests comment on what a fabulous idea this is. We hope this blog post has settled your mind at ease- there really is no reason to feel weird about asking for cash instead of wedding gifts.
Rosie Greaves – Freelance writer, and wedding and relationships expert.
Don’t Make Guests Wait Too Long to Start the Party
Lauren Scotti Photography
The quickest way to make your guests feel forgotten is to leave a big gap in your timeline between the end of your ceremony and the beginning of the cocktail hour. If everything is in the same venue, time it so the bar opens and appetizers get passed as soon as your guests leave your ceremony site. If they’re at two different locations, do your best to minimize the in-between time, allowing enough time for guests to travel from one spot to the other, but not enough time to sit around and get hungry (or worse, find a local restaurant and fill up on snacks instead of your wedding food).
If a longer break is unavoidable (say, between a late-morning ceremony and an evening reception), give your guests the option of being entertained. Recommend outings and activities to fill that time, or go as far as arranging one on their behalf, like a sightseeing bus tour or a hospitality lounge at the hotel with drinks, snacks, and TVs playing the afternoon’s football games.
How To Update Your Wedding Guests
OK, so what’s the best way to keep everyone informed? That depends on a few factors:
- How much time do you have? If your wedding was supposed to happen in the next few weeks, you’ll probably need to send a mass text or email in addition to putting an addendum on your website/app.
- How tech-savvy are your guests? Most of your guests will see your website or app update. However, be mindful of those who won’t and call any loved ones who aren’t as used to regular checking digital communication.
Now, here are a few ways to keep guests up to date when your wedding plans change. Plus, what exactly to say.
Send a physical note.
We realize sending something via snail mail probably doesn’t seem like the immediate option you were looking for but hear us out! There are a few reasons to send physical change the date or other update cards.
- If you have time before your originally scheduled wedding date (a month at the least), you can send out a wedding addendum via mail to your guests’ home addresses.
- Send an update card after the fact once you have more new details in place. (i.e. a few weeks after you send the mass email and update your wedding website)
This is a great option for formal affairs and also for those couples who would like to avoid sending completely new invitations. More on how to word these cards below.
Send a text.
If your wedding was set to take place in the next few weeks or even days, you don’t have time to send anything in the mail or guarantee that everyone will check their email in time, so you may want to text everyone ASAP.
We recommend enlisting the help of your wedding party, friends, and family here. If you don’t have everyone’s number, try to ask around for help.
Divide up the guest list into your parent’s friends and close relatives and give these to your parents to reach out to. (Some relatives who don’t text may require a phone call instead.) Split your friends and the rest of your guests between you and your wedding party.
Send an email.
An email blast is another option that allows you to reach out to everyone at once. The pros of sending an email are that it’s free and efficient everyone will receive it instantly. (Although you run the risk of it landing in spam for some.) It may also take some time to gather everyone’s personal emails.
If you are sending an update via email, make sure you use a clear subject line, such as “Important Update About the Smith Wedding,” or “The Davis Wedding Has Been Postponed/Canceled.”
Update your wedding website and/or app.
You can also easily bulk notify your guests about changes via your Zola App and/or Wedding Website.
To do this via the Zola app:
- Open your app and navigate to Guest List
- Select the envelope icon on the top right
- Choose how you’d like to send your message
To do this via your Zola wedding website:
- Open Guest List on a desktop
- Check ‘Select All’ (the box next to the headers for your Guest List)
- Select ‘Bulk Actions’ and then ‘Send Message’
You can always reach out to Zola customer support with any questions, too. We’re here to support you during this challenging time. We are also happy to update your wedding website for you, if necessary.
Other uses for the wishing well
A wedding wishing well does not have to be used just to accept cash gifts. Many couples find them useful for accepting all sorts of small gifts. Particularly at wedding showers, wishing wells can be used to accept recipe cards, kitchen utensils, linens, or other small items that are necessary to get a household started. Feel free to use your wishing well for this purpose or to use it in one manner at the shower and in another manner at the wedding reception. You can redecorate it around each event or keep it simple so that it will work for any wedding occasion.
The wedding wishing well is an easy way to accept cash gifts without making either the bride and groom or the guest feel uncomfortable. If you are not comfortable having an actual wishing well at your wedding you can set up a wedding account with your bank or your travel agent that guests can contribute to directly. Like the wishing well, simply add a card to your invitation that notes the contact and account information. In the digital age that we live in your guests will likely be grateful for the convenience of giving you a paperless wedding present.
This article was written by Timothy Ng. Edited By Easy Weddings
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When choosing a venue, the most important thing to remember is head count. You’ll need to know if you have enough room for everyone. It’s a safe bet that most, if not all, of your wedding party will be attending the rehearsal. Therefore, it should be easy to get a solid idea of the rehearsal dinner size. Ideally, the location of the venue will be relatively close to the church so there won’t be a long delay in getting there after the rehearsal. Common venues include banquet halls, country clubs, restaurants, church halls, golf courses, hotel event space, and homes. Realistically, anywhere with a suite or private room should be suitable.
TMR Recommendation: Get creative. If you and your bride-to-be enjoy watching your favorite team together, see if their stadium has any private suites that are available for rent.
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How Do I Get Friends to Respond to My Evite?
Q. I recently sent an Evite to my friends. Several of them opened it but never sent an RSVP. I can&rsquot imagine them treating a formal invitation this way. How do I get them to reply?
New York City
A. Whether the invitation was engraved on creamy paper or it arrived in someone&rsquos in-box, you are owed the courtesy of an answer. And the informality of a mass&ndashe-mailed invitation should theoretically increase the response rate. What could be easier than hitting Reply and typing, &ldquoSorry, I can&rsquot make it&rdquo?That said, some guests may assume that hosts send Evites only for casual events. As they scan the list of other guests&rsquo names, they may believe themselves to be interchangeable faces in a crowd. They might think you won&rsquot miss them if they don&rsquot show up&mdashor even RSVP. Remind them that this is not true by sending out a gracious follow-up e-mail that puts the laggards on the spot. Write to each one: &ldquoI hope you&rsquore coming. I&rsquoll save you a margarita or two unless I hear differently.&rdquo Even the worst foot-draggers should get the hint.
Manners matter, especially when it comes to your wedding day. From choosing your wedding party to finalizing your reception seating chart, there’s etiquette to consider every step of the way. Whether it’s a timeless question every couple faces or an unexpected tricky situation, we’ll help you navigate wedding etiquette so you’re ready to handle it all.
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- Honeymoon tips 72
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- Legal 10
- Trends 16
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