Asking for ‘The Other Gift’


As more and more couples spend for their own wedding, and as the times gets rougher financially, most couples like you surely prefer to ask for monetary gifts instead of the traditional ones. Monetary gifts allows you and your partner to save up or purchase the things you really need the most, like rent for the house, a car, or pocket money for your honeymoon. But asking for money in lieu of traditional gifts is considered taboo. However, there are now polite and creative ways to ask your guests to give you monetary blessing instead. Here are the common ways:

Word of Mouth

One of the most effective way to let your guests know about your wish is the use of word of mouth. Tell one trusted friend or family member to discreetly inform the guests that you and your partner prefers monetary gifts. Let the news spread but make sure not to mention a specific amount for it defeats the purpose.

Clues Using the Invitation

Mentioning about monetary gifts is considered by many as a grave sin when it comes to wedding invitations. Throughout the years, couples and even invitation suppliers, have found ways to solve this problem.

One of the most popular and widely accepted solutions is to create a money poem. This is placed inside the wedding invitation but written on a separate sheet. Here are some examples for you:

Poem 1
We didn’t register
We don’t need more stuff
But when it comes to financial help
You can never have enough!

Poem 2
We’re dreaming of a honeymoon
and we hope our dreams come true…
if you helped us fund our trip
we’d be so grateful to you!’

An increasingly popular method practiced in other countries is to have a Wedding Wishing Well. It involves placing a wishing well poem inside the invitation and setting up the ‘well’ at the reception. The poem subtly indicates the purpose of the well and once the guests are at the reception venue, they can place their enveloped gifts at the well. Here is an example of a Wedding Wishing Well poem:

More than just kisses so far we’ve shared
Our home has been made with love and care
Most things we need we’ve already got
Like a toaster and kettle, pans and pots
A wishing well we thought would be great
(but only if you wish to participate)
A gift of money is placed in the well
Then make a wish … but do not tell
Once we’ve replaced the old with the new
We can look back and say it was thanks to you!
And in return for your kindness we’re sure
that one day soon you’ll get what you wished for!

A creative way of asking for monetary gifts is to place inside a small envelop or pay slip envelop and state something like “gifts that fit this envelope will be greatly appreciated”.

Another option is to attach, in a separate sheet, details of your bank account, if you already have one. Still, do not directly mention or ask them to deposit here. Let them ask you, or the person in-charge of your RSVP what the account is for. Then your could inform them personally about your concern.

Others may prefer a not-so straightforward approach. Your invitation may bear words like “In lieu of traditional gifts, enveloped gifts would be highly appreciated.” Or if you and your partner are headed outside the country after your wedding, you may say in your invitation, ” [Bride] and [Groom] are headed to (name of country) to spend their honeymoon there. They hope you could give them gifts that would fill in their pockets and wallets”.

Traditions at the Reception

In general, the Filipino culture understands that a newlywed couple does need financial assistance to help them start their new life as husband and wife. This paved the way to the Saway ng Pera or the Money Dance that has become a standard part of the traditional Filipino wedding. It is much like the couples’ First Dance only that the guests are invited to pin or tape cash or envelops containing money to the bride’s gown and groom’s suit or Barong Tagalog. After doing so, the may dance with the bride and groom.

Other popular wedding reception practices include money tree, money cage, and the wedding wishing well. These rituals requires placing the tree, cage, or well at a strategic location for your guest to place their financial gifts. Announcing this during the reception is the critical part. The responsibility now relies on your wedding host. He or she must come up with a way to explain to the guests what is the purpose of the tree or well and what can they place there.

The Techie’s Way

Another is to mention it in your wedding website or blog, if you intent to have one. There are a couple of ways to do this. Using the invitation or word of mouth, have your guests know about your wedding website.

Once you have directed your guests to your wedding website or blog, you have several option to express your intention. One is to place the money poem at the Wish List Page of your site. Another is to create a list of things that you will need to pay for or save up for and tell your guests “money is at the top of our wedding wish list to help pay for the following”

Keep in mind one thing: you are asking a favor from your guests. If they still prefer to give you traditional gifts or follow your hints and give you what you want, make sure you show your gratitude and appreciation. Finally, make sure to use your gifts wisely. Invest on the things you need the most and use it to jumpstart your married life. would like to thank sources:

Brown, Elle, The Etiquette Of Asking For Cash Wedding Gifts. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from

Malone, Stephanie, The Inviting Pear. Wording on Wedding Invitation. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from

Brides of Wedding Wishing Well Wording. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from Wedding Gift Tip: Wedding Verses. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from

Wedding Central Australia. Wedding Wishing Wells – asking for money instead of gifts. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from

Rodriguez, Maan, And When I Dream: Wordings for Monetary Gifts. (Posted June 19, 2009). Retrieved December 28, 2009 from The Do’s and Don’ts in Wedding Invitations. Retrieved December 28, 2009 from