12th April 2017
The 5 Most Common Problems Associated with Maltese Wedding Gift Giving
I’m getting married and all I want as a gift is money – is it rude to say so?
Not exactly. Many couples put that coy little ‘your company is the best gift we could ask for but if you’d like to bring something else, cold hard cash is best’ card in with their invitations and it’s practically expected, even though some etiquette purists might wince at it. However, even if you don’t put it in, it’s practically an unspoken rule. Maltese people aren’t squeamish about giving money at weddings, so you won’t be missing any big bucks by leaving it out. And even a card won’t save you from the qammiel who thinks €30 is a lavish wedding gift.
I’m a bridesmaid or a maid of honour – how much should I spend on the gift?
This is a tricky question. Being a bridesmaid or maid of honour is a privilege but it’s a pretty big financial burden – you have to pay for the bridal shower, the bachelorette party (yes, some people have both), the dress, the shoes, the hair, the nails, the makeup (depending on how generous the bride is), as well as the aforementioned wedding gift. The bride might set out some guidelines, but it’s probably best to consult with the rest of the bridal party to make sure you’re all in line.
How much money should I give my co-worker?
Depends on whether you think of your co-worker as more of an acquaintance or a friend. If the person getting married is one of the people closest to you at the office, you can be as generous as you would be to a good pal. This goes double if not everyone in the office was invited and you were one of the lucky few. If this is someone that you like but you’re not particularly close to, give generously but more conservatively. If it’s Jeff from Accounts who you have a deep loathing for after he spilled wine on you at the Christmas party, do the same thing. It’s a wedding. Be polite.
I want to give them a gift that’s not money…but what?
Some people just don’t like the idea of giving money at a wedding. They might know the couple is very comfortably well off and their gift won’t make much of a difference, they might want a gift that’s more memorable than cash, or they simply think giving money is not them. Unless you know the couple well enough to know what kind of gift they’d like, you may want to inquire about a registry, ask family members or close friends or simply give them a gift voucher or a membership for something you know they’ll enjoy – that way it’s personal without being too binding and specific. A gift receipt is never a bad idea.
I’d like to set up a gift registry but what if people think I’m greedy?
Not at all. Everyone but the most socially-arrested people go to a wedding expecting to give a gift, so you’ll actually be giving a helping hand to many people who want to give you a non-monetary gift but are stymied by what to get you. Try to have a range of different-priced items on the list so that people of different means can give what they can afford. Tradition says that you can’t really shove the list in the guests’ faces yourself, so ask your maid of honour, bridesmaids or other members of the bridal party to direct gift-givers towards it.