What To Do If You Need to Return or Exchange a Wedding Gift!

I was talking with a friend about a recent prominent political figure who had to return some gifts that were given to her and her husband. And the question came up: what do you do if you have to return or exchange a wedding gift?

Photo from The Wedding Lens

Photo from The Wedding Lens

Here are the etiquette rules related to gift returning — and when it is appropriate.

  • DO return the gifts if the wedding never takes place (as in, if it’s called off)
  • You do NOT need to return the gifts if the wedding takes place, but the marriage doessn’t last (even if the marriage ends within only a few weeks or months)
  • You MAY return gifts that you do not like or receive in duplicate or are broken — which is the area that gets a little dicey — that returning gifts that you don’t like or receive in duplicate, right?

If you receive something you do not like or something in duplicate (or something that’s broken)….

You may return it, but you should be sensitive to the gift giver — especially if it’s a family member! You are NOT obligated to tell the individual. Be sure that when you write your thank you notes, you thank the gift giver for the original gift!

If you registered for gifts and received a duplicate, you can probably exchange with the store, but you still do not need to tell your gift giver of the exchange. Unless, of course, you need their help with the exchange!

If the gift is broken & it was mailed, see if there was insurance so that the post office can replace the cost of it.

Did you have to return gifts? How’d it go? Did you tell the gift giver?

~ Natasha


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