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Wedding etiquette in Canberra?

By Skidd Marx - 27 September 2011 173

My fiance & I are to wed in February next year. We’re currently making out the invitations but we’ve locked horns in a big way as to the whole gift/wishing-well issue.

My feeling is that asking for anything is borderline rude, while wishing-wells are flat-out crude and chintzy. I’d sooner drink kool-aid than put one of those vomit-inducing “we want us cash” poems on the card.

However, Miss Marx-to-be argues that I’m too old-fashioned. Not only are wishing-wells normal and therefore acceptable these days, they also solve the problem of having to put the unwanted George Foreman grill on Ebay, as well as any confusion guests have as to whether they’re to bring anything or not. Furthermore she says, a wishing-well is a way of re-couping wedding costs as well as all of the money we’ve given to other people at their weddings (i.e it’s out turn)!

Any opinions would be greatly appreciated (please be as frank as possible). If we can’t sort this out then we may not have to worry about a wedding at all.

What’s Your opinion?


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173 Responses to
Wedding etiquette in Canberra?
Roadrage77 12:04 pm 27 Sep 11

Just because something has become the norm doesn’t make it alright. Rise above and be better than the crass bogues shamelessly begging for your cash. So you make a few quid from the wishing well? Whoop-de-flamin-do – what price do you put on your dignity?

Erg0 12:01 pm 27 Sep 11

This is starting to sound like Xmas with my family, where everyone exchanges gift cards of equal value…

Calamity 11:55 am 27 Sep 11

Calamity said :

I’m surprised to read that most people have said asking for cash is wrong – almost every wedding I’ve been to the couple has asked for cash.
I don’t like that, but I also completely see why they do it. Most couples have been living together for years already and are already completely set up, so they don’t want new household items but they do want a honeymoon/a house deposit.

And sadly, I completely see where your bride is coming from with the ‘I want my money back!!’ comment. I have given so much bloody money to other people for their weddings that when I finally get married I sort of feel like I HAVE to ask for cash just to get back the thousands of dollars I’ve given other people over the years! Bloody stupid system.

I’d like to add that I still think a better system would be for people to purchase ‘tickets’ to your wedding. I realise that sounds horrific and will never catch on – but it makes so much sense!!! Instead of all this money being thrown around haphazardly and leaving pretty much everyone feeling resentful, you would just be paying for your seat at the reception…. No? 🙁

CapitalK 11:54 am 27 Sep 11

You don’t ask for a gift or cash -you give people the option and then can give them suggestions such as a gift registry or a wishing well – although I think a giving tree is much nicer

Rollersk8r 11:53 am 27 Sep 11

I’m 100% with you. A wedding is NOT about cashing in or claiming what you are theoretically owed. If claiming money back is your main priority you really have to ask why you’re getting married at all.

There’s only one thing worse that a wishing well in my book – and that’s paying for the couple’s honeymoon. Hey – we did you the favour of inviting you to our modest wedding, so now do us the favour of paying for our luxurious holiday, jerks.

Have also been to a post-wedding celebration where the bride could not stop talking about how pissed she was that nobody bought the plasma TV off the gift registry. Have never looked at her the same way since.

I could go on….

Calamity 11:53 am 27 Sep 11

I’m surprised to read that most people have said asking for cash is wrong – almost every wedding I’ve been to the couple has asked for cash.
I don’t like that, but I also completely see why they do it. Most couples have been living together for years already and are already completely set up, so they don’t want new household items but they do want a honeymoon/a house deposit.

And sadly, I completely see where your bride is coming from with the ‘I want my money back!!’ comment. I have given so much bloody money to other people for their weddings that when I finally get married I sort of feel like I HAVE to ask for cash just to get back the thousands of dollars I’ve given other people over the years! Bloody stupid system.

Diggety 11:38 am 27 Sep 11

I much prefer to give cash, it makes me much more comfortable drinking your booze and asking for seconds.

Wishing wells are a great idea. They also keep me away from shopping malls and the present fits in my top pocket.

jsm2090 11:38 am 27 Sep 11

If the couple in question couldn’t afford a honeymoon without the donations by guests, this may be acceptable. I’m certainly not stingy, but I took offence at a wedding we attended where the bride & groom, earning $250-300k a year asked us for a specific cash donation. Anything goes these days.

Henry82 11:37 am 27 Sep 11

I agree with BKW (#1) on this one. A family friend got married recently, on their wish-list was a stainless steel fridge with a tv.

Middle-ground would be leaving a list with parents or something, don’t make reference to it, unless anyone asks. Thats the way i’d solve the problem anyway

Deref 11:35 am 27 Sep 11

You’re absolutely right. Asking for anything is tacky and asking for cash is like a huge neon sign saying “I’M THE KING OF THE BOGANS”.

Holden Caulfield 11:34 am 27 Sep 11

Not familiar with the concept of wishing well, is that just a new name for a gift registry?

Prior to getting married I thought gift registries were a bit naff, but when considering it from a different angle I thought it at least gave people an idea of what we might like/need.

From memory our invitation made a comment along the lines of “Should you choose, a gift registry is available at…” That is, we had no expectation for people to use the list. If they did, great; if not, no dramas.

If you start demanding such or, worse, asking for cash, then I’d be inclined to say GAGF.

kschoey 11:32 am 27 Sep 11

Beserk Keyboard Warrior said :

Whenever I get a wedding invite with a wishing well it make me want to give them a $15 toaster from Target just out of spite. I really do lose respect for them.

+1 I’m not big on wishing wells at all. Think it’s rather tacky. For our wedding we had a gift registry at DJs so we picked what we wanted and when we did get double ups we were able to return them to DJs and get vouchers for the value of them to buy other things off the list that we didn’t get. Made it clear though that we didn’t mind one way or the other if people gave a gift but gave them the option of buying one if they wanted to.

Was also good because guests from o/s and interstate who couldn’t make it and wanted to buy something could order over the net and have it delivered.

Another option if your fiance is keen on the $$ is some websites that allow guests to give you a virtual gift like you nominate funding your honeymoon and they can give you $$$ towards a massage or tour or something like that

thatsnotme 11:25 am 27 Sep 11

The first question, is whether you actually need anything at all? It’s rarely like the old days, when wedding gifts would help a couple to set up their first home together. If you don’t need anything, then letting guests know you have all you need and gifts aren’t necessary / nominating a charity they can donate to, can be a whole lot less stress.

My wife and I did ask for gifts of money when we got married, to go towards our honeymoon. We genuinely couldn’t have afforded to go on one otherwise, and had enough to go on a nice domestic trip. We also used every cent that was given to us for the trip.

On our invitations, we didn’t do one of those tacky poems – which I’ve always thought were only used because the couple were too embarassed to just come out and ask. We had a simple line in there, saying that if people wished to give a gift, that a donation to go towards our honeymoon would be appreciated.

Some close family wished to give an actual gift, which was fine with us, and those gifts were things we needed, and use to this day.

Personally, I feel that just asking for cash for the sake of it is tacky. If you do go down that path, I’d suggest nominating something substantial that your guests are contributing towards. If you do that though, make damn sure that you actually follow through, and use that money for that purpose. We have given money to go towards a honeymoon in the past, and the couple didn’t ever go on one. Pretty sure that money got pissed away on pokies and booze…now that’s tacky!

poetix 11:16 am 27 Sep 11

I think asking for anything is appalling. Not borderline rude, but over-the-border rude. So what if other people do it? They probably also park in disabled spaces or give people the finger when driving home in their 4WDs to (insert suburb name).

There is also the issue of turning what should be a celebration of love into a grab for shiny things. So what if someone gives you something you don’t like? I’m sure a charity would appreciate it.

To even think of doing this shows how vulgarity is becoming the norm in our society.

Beserk Keyboard Warr 11:15 am 27 Sep 11

Whenever I get a wedding invite with a wishing well it make me want to give them a $15 toaster from Target just out of spite. I really do lose respect for them.

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