And… just as importantly… how not to ask for money for your wedding present!
If you want to ask for money instead of having a traditional wedding gift list, use a website like Patchwork to:
- Make giving money meaningful
- Guarantee simple and secure funds transfers
- Have giving made easy and fun for your guests
There are many reasons you might like to avoid traditional wedding gifts. Perhaps you’ve been together for a few years and already have all of the household items you need. Or maybe you’re getting married abroad and don’t want your guests to bring physical gifts with them. Maybe you just find department store gift lists uninspiring. Whatever the reason, asking for cash for your wedding gift is a practical alternative.
If you’ve decided you’d prefer money for your gifts, next you need to decide how you’re going to ask for it. This can be a delicate subject. You’re going to want to make sure you approach it in the right way. Asking for monetary wedding gifts can still be seen (by some!) as taboo.
Although a few of your friends may have been asked this before, some family members – especially the older generation – may not have come across this request and may feel a little bit put out. Let people know your request in a thoughtful way. That way you should be able to avoid putting anyone’s nose out of joint. So what are your options when it comes to asking for cash?
Keep It Simple, Fun and Inspiring!
Patchwork, our innovative online gift list, removes the awkwardness of asking for money. With Patchwork you get to show your wedding guests exactly what it is that their gift money is going towards. So rather than asking for hard cash in a cold, transactional manner it’s a much more personal, fun and engaging experience.
It may be that you want to invite your guests to help fund the Honeymoon of your dreams. With Patchwork, you can select a customisable template with different experiences that you’d like to enjoy on your honeymoon. Guests then choose exactly what they’d like to fund. For example: beers on the beach, a flight upgrade, or the best table at the restaurant with the sunset views.
Got the Honeymoon sorted? With Patchwork you can ask wedding guests for cash gifts to put towards anything. It could be A Year of Dates, your First Pet together, a New Kitchen even a House Deposit. Whatever it is that you feel you truly want or need.
With the Patchwork Gift List, our users collect £85 as the average wedding gift. This is more than the £66 industry average (The Independent May 2019). So with Patchwork you can expect to get more too!
Most people who ask for wedding money online tend to go down the honeymoon fund route. There are a few different sites that will allow you to do that. Some are connected to particular travel companies (so in fact these are more like travel vouchers rather than cash). Others allow you to collect contributions into accounts that they hold for you. With Patchwork, you can collect cash direct. It goes into your bank account so you can spend it whenever you’re ready.
The benefits of using Patchwork
The best thing about an online cash gift list like Patchwork is showing guests the things you want to fund. They’re shown as a collection of individually priced images. People can choose exactly what to treat you depending on their budget. For example: £10 for honeymoon cocktails, £50 for a romantic dinner or £100 for a night in a hotel.
Your guests can leave you messages with their gifts. And you can keep track of everyone’s contributions in your account so it’s easy to send your love and thanks. Plus, we’ve teamed up with MOO, so you can print personalised thank you cards with a 30% discount.
Your wedding guests will be excited to give you a gift. They’ll be grateful for any guidance you want to give them. So when it comes to asking for cash gifts, don’t let it be a source of pre-wedding anxiety. Your guests will more than likely be pleased they’re able to give you something you really want or need.
Just remember to make it personal and be explicit about where their money is going. That’s what everyone really wants to know.
No frills option – put your bank details on the invitations
This is without doubt the most ‘no frills’ way of asking for money. Just include yours or your partner’s bank details in the wedding invitations when you send them out, and ask your wedding guests to transfer whatever they would like to.
One of the downsides to this approach is that it can be perceived as being a little bit cold and impersonal, leaving guests feeling awkward and often confused about how much to give. In fact our recent survey found that 50% of wedding guests find it ‘joyless and transactional’, 30% think it’s ‘awkward’ and another 10% actually find it ‘quite rude’.
There are pros and cons to this approach, but one thing to be aware of is that, people will give gifts over a 3-6 month period. This can make it a little bit difficult to keep track of who’s sent what, in turn making it tricky to thank your guests. In our experience, most people don’t tend to add a useful reference (such as their name!) when sending gifts this way. They may instead write lovely but not-very-helpful notes like ‘HAPPY WEDDING’. This means you’ll have to spend a little more time digging around to find out who’s sent you what.
Old fashioned option – collect cash on your wedding day
Another option is to simply ask your wedding guests to bring money on the day itself. You could set up a dedicated area for gift money, with a little sign telling people to leave their gift. This could be a box, a treasure chest, or you could even just leave a hat on the bar, and guests can contribute as they order their drinks.
This option means that your guests will need to be prepared and relies on them remembering to visit a cash point before they arrive. If they don’t remember, you’re not leaving them with any options for sending a late gift, which could leave them feeling terrible about not contributing! There can be an awkwardness involved when dealing with cold, hard cash. Some of your friends and family may feel too uncomfortable with this request to do as you’ve asked. This is when people tend to go rogue and pick something else to give you instead – say hello to new picture frames & vases.
Asking for cash on the day can make saying thank you tricky. If you receive the money in a card, make sure you take note of who sent it, the amount that they gave, and if they wrote anything specific, so that you can thank them properly. If it’s a case of cash in a hat, there’s no way of thanking people individually, but you could send out general thank yous to everyone for coming.
And a word of caution…
Although this option may seem the easiest, it’s also the riskiest, as it’s so easy to lose track of where your money is. We’ve even heard about one couple who left their jar full of money on the bar when the wedding was over, never to be seen again. Sad times.