A work colleague invited me and my partner (we live in London) to her wedding evening reception (starting at 7pm).

We are French and this will be our first English wedding. We are not invited to the ceremony or meal. I have read online that the evening reception was for drinks only and that no food will be served.

Are we expected to bring a gift? The happy couple have set up a website where we can make donations for their honeymoon: should I contribute to this instead? If yes, what amount is expected?

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    Commented Sep 15, 2017 at 18:21

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Being a brit I know there's no obligation in UK culture for you to bring a gift, it's more to be polite. It can be considered rude if you were invited to the ceremony and didn't bring a gift. The London Economic echoes this:

If you’re invited to the evening reception, or a party after the actual ceremony has occurred, you may or may not wish to give a gift, but many people do anyway. If you attend the ceremony, it’s the pit of bad manners not to give a gift. Even if the bride and groom insist that they don’t want a gift, give one anyway.

If you do want to donate to the honeymoon, just add whatever you can afford. I'm sure they don't expect a minimum, but whatever you feel comfortable giving. Again this would vary dependant on how well you know them. To someone I didn't know very well (a friend of a friend), I'd give them the value of a bottle of wine (roughly 30+ quid). If they're closer, I'd take a gift to the wedding (something personal to what I know of them).


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