Engagement Party Etiquette
We have been invited to an engagement party. Are we obligated to bring a gift? No registry info was included with the invitation, so I'm guessing just a card will suffice. There will be a bridal shower and obviously the wedding for which to purchase gifts.
Any advice or thoughts?
I've always brought a gift but I don't think you're obligated to do so. If you know other people attending perhaps you can get a feel for what they are going to do.
We had an engagement picnic (almost 30 years ago now) and people brought gifts BUT we did not expect them too. I also would see what others are doing.
You never have to bring a gift. But they will be talking about how you didn't if you don't.
I'm with cbel, I think a gift is expected.
I have went to several and I would have to say more didn't bring gifts than did
The ones that did were nothing over the top....Bride Magazine subscriptions, Wedding organizers, Wedding Day survival kits, Wedding day tote bags and that type of stuff
I think a gift is appropriate - nothing major, but a little something might be nice. I like the wedding organizer idea - etc. Just my personal opinion!
A nice bottle of wine would be a sufficient gift for an engagement party, if you feel that you must bring something. Traditional etiquette says that engagement parties are specifically not gift giving occasions, but that's kind of gone by the wayside.
But it's still not a "registry" kind of gift. Bottle of wine, a picture frame, something small is just fine.
we Had a Engagemnt party and people brought gifts make sure those people are invited to wedding my one cousin gave a toast yes two slices of white bread toasted
I would say a gift is expected, nothing big of course, but something. I like the bottle of wine or something wedding related.
Yes, a gift is expected. Cash is best.
Personally, I'm not a fan of engagement parties. Never had one. How many gifts do people need to milk out of friends and relatives?
I agree with Calico 100%. I dont think engagement parties are necessary. Then there is the bridal shower, then the wedding. People cant afford to keep giving and giving, especially to the same couple. I didnt have one and most married couples I know didnt have one. Cash is best IF you got invited to one and plan on going. Wine, not so much, because what if they dont drink (wine). I dont, so I would have no use for it.
I had an engagement party for my son in April, and there were no gifts. The party was more for our family and the brides family to meet each other.
Most people will believe they are expected to bring a gift. If you don't want gifts then you should state on the invitation that it is just "a Get together to Celebrate the Engagement and Please no gifts". I always felt that the engagement party was just another gift getting opportunity. It is always up to you as to how much you wish to spend on the couple, in celebration of their marriage. For instance, if you plan on spending $200 you might split it 50/50/100 between the Engagement/Bridal Shower/ Wedding. How you feel about the couple should dictate your actions. You might give your favorite niece a generous gift on all three occasions, where as a friend of a friend's third cousin may only get a wedding gift. The thing I dislike is when a couple tries to be greedy and maximize their gift getting by inviting some people to only one event and a different crowd to another. If I'm not invited to the wedding, don't invite me to the Engagement or Bridal shower just so you can get a gift out of me.
the bride should always shower before the wedding. it's important.
how come the groom doesn't have to shower before the wedding?
is it because girls are cleaner than guys?
The engagement parties I've attended have all been at restaurants or banquet halls, I generally give enough to cover the cost plus some.
I agree, all of these parties and showers are getting out of hand. I like JBJSKJ's idea of splitting what you would give between the different events.
I find this all to be completely out of hand.... A gift for the engagement party, bridal shower, then the actual wedding gift.... It never ends
Bunch of horsecrap, I never heard of such thing. But if I were invited to such a thing, I would probably bring a bottle of wine. I never come to a party emptyhanded. But gifts? That is what a shower is for. And then a wedding gift to follow.
I agree with Carol my engagement picnic was ALL immediate family. They brought me gifts but mostly bride to be stuff. It should be more about the celebration than gifts IMO.
It's polite for the parents of the bride to invite over grooms family and they all celebrate the engagement. It's a lovely thing to do really. I don't agree with large engagement parties.
I have only been invited to one of these and due to a scheduling conflict I could not attend. It was for a good friend of mine and I was also asked to be in the wedding party. I gave them a really nice bottle of champagne to be opened either on an anniversary or at their rehearsal dinner. I think they appreciated the "idea" behind the gift more than the actual gift itself.
I don't think that you need to get an over the top gift or anything too expensive either. Spend $15-30 if you can and I am sure that you can get them something nice. I certainly would not show up empty handed though. I don't believe people half them time when they write"no gifts" because believe me when you are one of the few few people that doesn't show up with something it almost always gets mentioned (even if only in passing). If wine isn't their thing, a nice low cost "gift" is his and hers luggage tags for that honeymoon they"ll be taking:)
Emily Post says this about gifts for engagement parties.
"It depends. In the past, engagement gifts were not obligatory or expected, and sometimes this is still the case. However, in many parts of the country, bringing a gift to an engagement party has become de rigueur. Close friends and family usually do give the couple an engagement gift, either when the engagement is announced or at the engagement party. An engagement gift is really a good-hearted gesture of affection, and it need not be expensive or elaborate. Something simple such as a cookbook or a good bottle of wine - intended to help the couple establish a collection - makes a great engagement gift. Or if you prefer, save your money for the wedding gift.
Couples who are conscious of taxing their friends' budgets may ask the host the pass the word to friends not to bring presents. If you really aren't sure what to do, call the host and ask. Or check with a local wedding planner to ask about the customs and trends in your area. Ultimately, your decision whether to give an engagement gift depends on local custom, your relationship to the couple and your budget."
I think I am invited to the same party as you, and I don't know what to do either. When I had my engagement party, we wrote no gifts please. This invitation did not say that and I think I would feel stupid not bringing something.
I believe a small gift is customary these days... if you know where they are registered getting them something small off of that would be great, or another great idea is the cake topper, or two champagne flutes that would be used at the wedding
Soon enough people will be holding 'birthing parties' at the hospital, where everyone will be expected to bring a 'push present', SMH
Who ever came up with that crock? Women have given birth for how long? And now they want gifts for delivering. When will it stop???
Thanks to everyone for your input on this question. We decided to spread our gift budget over the engagement party, bridal shower (hopefully only one) and the wedding gift.
I really don't see the point of an engagement party, but to each his own.
I got a wedding invitation with the stores they were registered at printed on the back. Stuff like this is normal today.
Nosila, a registry card for the engagement party? Can't say I've ever seen that, but then I haven't been invited to many engagement parties.
I had begun a registry before my engagement party but we did NOT include that information in the invitation. If people found it on their own, so be it. For an engagement party, I think it's a little presumptuous to include registry information.
Engagement party and registry? Never heard of that, though it doesn't surprise me. Do what feels comfortable and affordable to you. I've never attended an engagement party, only showers and a wedding. Assuming you will be invited to the shower/wedding, maybe hold off until then. A nice bottle of wine is good for the engagement party. Then again, you can always pull off a "what are you bringing" line to others you know are going!
I received an invite to an engagement party a few days ago. There was a poem type thing on it that said something like......we aren't registered anywhere, we have plenty of pots and pans......please give to our honeymoon fund.
I would never send an invite of that type. I do think that cash is best as a gift in most situations, but would never imagine asking for it outright on an invite.
I just love how people have these parties - with the economy the way it is, don't these kids get it that they aren't entitled to EVERYTHING? What happened to paying for your own honeymoon? So many of these kids think they are entitled!! It's a joke - engagement party?? C'mon people, what happened to, "Let's have a party - don't bring anything, just come and celebrate??" Ugh - I have vented!!
I’ve found that engagement parties are becoming the norm. When my wife and I got married 4 years ago we also threw an engagement party (engagement party, wedding, and honeymoon paid solely by us “kids”) with the intention of having our families formally meet one another. We didn’t expect any gifts but a few family members brought us wine, which was nice but not our intention. You can always bring a bottle of wine just to be safe…
Our engagement party was thrown by my parents, at their house, with food prepared by us, and consisted of immediate family and bridal party. It wasn't a gift grab or an "entitlement" but a celebration of our engagement with our loved ones and a chance for everyone to become more acquainted.
We did not even have an engagement party because we figured there are plenty of parties around the wedding! And did not want another occasion for people to feel obligated to bring gifts. However, if I attend one I just bring a bottle of champagne or their favorite wine and a card.
Having an engagement party is ridiculous. Then there is the bridal shower, then wedding.
Come on, thats getting carried away. JMO! :)
Botheredbyu- do you think people having Memorial Day parties, 4th of July parties, Labor Day parties is getting too carried away??? No one forces one to go to anything. It’s just what people chose to do.
Our engagement party was a party for our immediate family members to meet and get acquainted. It was at my parents house outside picnic and both families brought food and some people bought little gifts but it was not expected at all. I say do what you want. People don't come so what. I wouldn't exactly put on the invitation what to bring.
TFulp - No I don't. Those parties are different. Engagement parties usually means you bring a gift. How many times are you going to celebrate getting married??
We have a nephew who is getting married in September and her parents had a small luncheon/engagement party for them. No gifts, just a celebration of their upcoming nuptials as well as family members getting to know each other before their big day. On the other hand, just received an invite to a nieces engagement party hosted by his parents in Maryland. The couple have been living together for at least 5 years, have a child who just turned 1 and are getting married in February. We declined, there will be the wedding shower to celebrate.
Bring money. Just like a wedding today. Bring money. Gifts are mostly done at bridal showers.
At a wedding I went to recently, they had a website. If you weren't interested in buying something on their registry (which wasn't much because they were both living on their own for a long time), you had the choice of designating your cash gift to be put towards the groom's continuiing education, dancing lessons for the bride, honeymoon fund, or moving expenses as they were merging two houses into one new house. Why wouldn't you just accept the cash that most people give anyway and disperse the funds they way you want. Continuuing education - really?
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