I don’t know if someone got us a wedding gift… should I send a thank you card?

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By: Virginia L.CC BY 2.0


Now that the wedding is over, we have a list of 10 couples who came to the wedding, and did not give anything. It concerns me, because I am hoping that nothing got lost. It just seems odd.

I just don't want to mess something up, etiquette-wise. And I don't want to ASK these people if they gave something, in case they didn't. But the WORST would be not thanking them if they did give something but we just didn't receive it.

What do you do when you don't know if someone got you a wedding gift? -P

I totally get this. I remember being very concerned with getting my “thank you” on. I had an Excel spreadsheet to keep very detailed notes on all gifts received from every wedding event. I was even known to stop EVERYTHING I was doing to write a Thank You card seconds after opening newly-delivered wedding gift packages.

Now I know that wedding etiquette states that guests have up to a year after the wedding to give the couple a gift. But I totally remember seeing the blank spots on that Excel sheet and having moments of panic — trying to remember if I had failed to document something in a moment of excitement, if I had lost a card while tipsy at the wedding, or if I was stressing all for naught. There was no way I was just going to wait around for a year to find out what was what.

What's a newlywed to do!? As P mentioned, you can't be rude and ask, “Yo, did you get us a gift? Or are you planning to get us one in the future?” You also can't be rude and not thank someone for a kindness! No worries: Here's my fail-safe plan for navigating that tricky wedding dance of mystery gifting and thanks…

Send a general “thank you” note to the people for whom you have no specific gift info

For example, if you don't know if they gave you a gift, but you do know they came to your wedding:

Thanks so much for coming to our wedding! We had a blast partying all night with you. Let's make non-wedding-related plans to hang out soon.
All our love,
The Newlyweds

Maybe you have no gift info for a person who was truly active in your wedding:

Thank you so much for everything you've done on this crazy road to the wedding day! I don't know what I would have done without your help with X, Y, and Z. Once all the wedding craziness dies down, I owe you a thank-you drink of your choice.
All our love,
The Newlyweds

After that it's up to them to (hopefully) realize you aren't thanking them for a specific gift. Which then will leave it open for them to (hopefully) respond with “Oh hey, did you guys happen to get my gift of X?” And then y'all can figure it out from there.

Ultimately, even if they don't notice you didn't mention their gift, at least you've sent some kind of thanks. That may be enough for them to feel loved and appreciated. Thereby skipping any kind of drama and hurt feelings.

If there was never a gift or a lost card, no worries! Getting gifts is not what weddings are about anyway. Your guests' support and presence at your wedding was totally gift enough, and by sending a “thank-you” for coming, they have been thanked for that.

So what do you do if you don't know if someone got you a gift? Bluntly ask? Vaguely thank them anyway? Wait and see?

Comments on I don’t know if someone got us a wedding gift… should I send a thank you card?

  1. I’m in the throes of thank-you cards myself, (some are sent, but I’m trying to finish up before the 3-month mark, which is my personal cut-off) and I’m running into some similar issues… a bunch of people didn’t bring gifts (or cards) which is of course fine, but I want to make sure I didn’t miss/lose something, so I’m sending thank-yous to everyone who came. Hopefully, if I don’t mention a specific gift, and they gave one, they’ll ask about it. If not… eh, what can you do? Another thing is we have a random gift certificate that didn’t come in a card, so we don’t know who it’s from. We’re pretty sure it was someone from our town, since it’s for the local bookstore, but there were several people from our town who didn’t bring cards or gifts, so I don’t know how to ask who gave it.

  2. I love this post. I’m a wedding planner by trade but being a bride in August, I was amazed by how many people did not get us gifts…. I called my step-mom and asked about some people, just cus I needed some kind of confirmation that I wasn’t crazy, but she didn’t know if they did or did not anyway. I think a “thank you for coming” is awesome no matter what. Their presence is enough, right? :/

    I wrote a version of “thanks so much for traveling and being part of our special day. It meant the world to us that you could share in these moments and memories.”

  3. I was a guest at a wedding two weeks ago. I gave a card with 100 cash in it and placed it in the designated card box. A week post wedding I received a text from the groom, asking I’d I gave a gift because they did not have anything from me and the wedding venue was no longer holding gifts. I found this to be incredibly rude but I responded that I had given a 100 bill in a card and signed my first and last name. He responded that the could not locate it and texted me several more times about it. I finally said I a sorry this happened good luck locating the card. The groom clearly expects me to send a replacement gift which I a, not going to do. I found out he texted all guests that did not give a gift asking if they had. How awkward and bullying! My friend sent a check post wedding and he got the text. This is not the right way to handle this!

    • Agree with you! This is why it is important that brides and grooms designate a trusted friend or relative to monitor the gifts and cards. Most catered events have a secured, decorated card holder.

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