This week on Wed-iquette Wednesday we had a question from one of our readers with respect to gift etiquette when only invited to a portion of the wedding. This does happen and fortunately I haven’t encountered this situation before but usually when a couple can’t afford to feed more than a certain amount of guests but still want to have these people at their wedding, they invite them to the dancing portion at the end of the evening where it doesn’t cost them anything to have them there. Usually in these circumstances you will find a cash bar as well so there is no real hosting going on, just with the entertainment that is already being paid to entertain the guests who were invited to the whole event. Sad but I do understand why it happens, sort of a have your cake and eat it too philosophy I think. We sought out ‘Canada’s Etiquette Guy’ Jay Remer to give us more insight into what our readers should do in these circumstances. He make some fabulous points on the mindset of a guest being invited. If you have your own etiquette question, fill out the form at the bottom of the page and we will have it answered on a future Wed-iquette Wednesday.
How does one decide on a gift when one is invited to a dance party following a wedding and dinner, but only to the dance itself? This is thankfully a rare situation, rather a thoughtless one at that. Why would one invite someone to only part of the festivities? There can be a million reasons, poor financial planning being the most likely. I say this is awkward because it will undoubtedly make the guest feel rather like a fifth wheel. Plan your wedding celebration so this does not occur!
However, should you be in this fix, do bring a gift. After all, the bride and groom do want you to partake in at least a part of the celebration and therefore a small gift is appropriate. Common sense would dictate that when one is invited to one of three elements of a given fete, one might give a smaller gift than were one invited to all three.
Don’t presume to understand the reason for the way the invitations were dispersed, just be grateful you were included at all. Planning a wedding can be fraught with challenges. Even though to an outsider, the ideas behind the arrangements may appear difficult to grasp, this is not the concern of the guest. But for wedding planners, this scenario is best avoided – Jay Remer.