An etiquette query that we have run into a few times is the issue of how to tell your guests that you do not want gifts - but would prefer money. This is an incredibly difficult question to answer and there is a significant chance of offending your guests (particularly those from older generations).
None-the-less, we are in a recession and some newlyweds (or even those celebrating birthdays) would prefer to build their nest egg than their cutlery collection. As a frequent wedding guest (it's that time in my life I guess!), I have taken both the gift and the gift card route. Personally, I prefer giving a gift card or certificate over a check or cash - but there isn't really much of a difference when you get down to it.
Regardless of how you will word this request, there is one stipulation. Do not put this on your invitation. Wedding invitations are a keepsake for many of your guests and the last thing they want to be reminded of is your request for cash. Save details like gift registries, attire suggestions and transportation arrangements for your reception cards and keep the invitation light!
There are a few options for getting around the "We want money" issue:
By not registering, you're doing two things. First, you're allowing your guests to get creative with their gift-giving (which many will love). Second, you are basically tricking your more lazy un-inspired male busy guests into going the cash/check/gift card route. Choosing gifts can be difficult sometimes (hence the creation of the registry), so money is an easy alternative if you don't provide your guests with a wish list.
If you're willing to be open with the issue, there are a number of things you can say. If you're already established and living together before the wedding (as some couples are), you could say something like "The Bride and Groom have built a happy home together. They do not need anything other than your presence, but they would love a honeymoon!"
Remember, it's going to be tough, if not impossible, to please everyone attending your wedding. Consider carefully if your need for cash in lieu of gifts is important enough to open up this can of worms. But, if it is - take our advice! That's what we're here for!
Have you been in this situation, or been to an event where the hosts were asking for cash? How did you handle it?
Do you have etiquette questions? Tweet us @fabulousinvites!