3 Polite Ways on How to Ask for Presents on Invitations

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Whether you should ask for gifts or not is a delicate question. Some people think it’s rude, while others think there’s nothing wrong with doing it. In most cases, people have a hard time picking gifts, especially when they are not so close to a particular person. Even the most intimate friends have the same issue because of the years of giving gifts for birthdays, Christmas, graduations, and other occasions. Therefore, a lot of guests love receiving hints on the invitations. It helps them choose gifts easier, which furthermore saves quite some time and effort.

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The truth is, most people think it’s not rude to ask for gifts as long as you do it properly. You can’t just demand that someone give you a gift you want. There are a lot of things to keep in mind when making a gift request, especially budget and time. To make sure you don’t forget anything and to help you send a polite invitation, we composed a guide with several easy ways on how to ask for presents on invitations.

Things to Consider Before Sending an Invitation

Before we get to the commonly asked question of how to say gifts are welcome on invitations, there are some things you should consider. It’s just so you have a clear picture in your head about what you want to ask in the first place. Once you make sure you know what you want, we can reflect on the way you want it to be done. Here we go first with gifts and your wishes:


Is it your birthday, Christmas, a wedding, or a completely different occasion? Are you throwing a big party or a small gathering? How many people are coming? These questions are important because the answers will tell you what kind of invitation to send. For big-time events, you can easily go with impersonal and short cards, while modest gatherings require somewhat personalized invitations.


Are you inviting only your closest friends and family members? Or you intend to throw a party for coworkers, bosses, and some other people you don’t know so well? Things are easier with intimate friends, as you can be honest about what you want. You can tell them everything in person, which means you don’t even have to write anything about the presents on the invitations. It saves a lot of time and effort. 

However, if there will be a lot of people you don’t know so well, you’ll have to think about how to politely ask for gifts on invitations. Don’t worry, we’ll get to that section soon enough. For now, review your guest list and consider who is coming. It might give you an answer on what to do with the cards. For friends, it’s acceptable to write funny and creative cards that will make them laugh. On the other hand, when inviting people from work, you’ll have to stick with serious and thoughtful ones.


You are probably wondering How to Give Hints About a Gift. Well, before we come to that part, you should decide what gift you want. For example, if you’re planning a small gathering for your friends and family, you can ask for just one big gift from all of them. It’s very convenient as you’ll get what you always wanted and never had the chance (and means) to get, and your guests can save time on planning and picking separate gifts.


We get it, you want gifts for the occasion. Still, have you considered that some alternatives to gifts might be even better for you? These days, more and more people opt for things that wouldn’t be called traditional material gifts. Why is that so you may ask?  Well, it’s more practical because they get the things they want instead of something they’ll never use. Take a look at these alternatives because they might give you some ideas.

  • Gift-Free Event

Yes, this is the exact opposite of the thing you want, but think about it. If you tell people not to bring you gifts, you can plan a charity event to help the ones that need donations more than you do. Also, you can all save some money and do something together, like to travel, buy a useful item for everybody to use, and more.

  • Monetary Gifts

Believe it or not, a lot of people opt for monetary gifts these days. They are just more practical, as you get to buy whatever you need and want at the moment. It’s also very convenient for those who are giving the gift. As we mentioned above, we all get to the point where we don’t know what to get anymore, whether it’s a birthday, a wedding, or Christmas. Shopping for presents is just difficult and stressful, and we could all agree on that. Therefore, don’t hesitate to ask for money instead of gifts, if that’s what you want.

If you’re wondering how to ask for cash for a wedding gift, we have answers in the following article 3 Cute Ways to Ask for Money as a Wedding Gift.

When it comes to birthdays, things can be a little different, which is why you should take a look at the article on How to Ask for Gift Cards on a Birthday Invitation. After reading it, you shouldn’t have any more questions on how to ask for money instead of gifts for birthdays, believe us.

  •  Experiences Instead of Gifts

Did you know that you can get experiences instead of gifts? No, it’s true, you don’t have to stick with traditional gifts if you don’t want to. Just like they can give you clothes, accessories, and other material stuff, people can give you coupons, tickets for plays, get you a subscription on a channel, and much more. All you need to do is to give a hint about the thing you want to get! We know how that could be challenging, so we composed the following article containing 5 ways for How to Ask for Experiences Instead of Gifts.

Making an Invitation

If you went through all of the sections listed above, you’re all ready to write an invitation. We are not going to lie, it’s a tricky process, but we’ll manage to do it together. Here are a few things you can do:

Infographic 3 Polite Ways on How to Ask for Presents on Invitations

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Direct Approach for the Closest People in Your Life

There’s no straightforward answer on the question of how to say bring gifts on an invitation. Well, you shouldn’t use that very sentence, that’s for sure. As we already mentioned, some people think it’s rude to ask for gifts on invitations, while others think it’s ok to do it. In real life, most people are fine with gift requests as long as you don’t sound bossy or demanding in any way. That might make them feel uncomfortable and obligated, which takes out all the fun of the occasion. Therefore, you should be super careful when asking for gifts.

However, the truth is, you don’t have tons of choices on how you’ll do it. You can either try with subtle hints or ask directly. When it comes to the straightforward approach, there are some things you should keep in mind:

  • Write a direct request on invitation only with friends and family. They know you well enough not to misinterpret the wording and get insulted.
  • Funny gift requests are only acceptable in the narrow circle of your closest friends and family. Others might find jokes about gifts inappropriate and rude.
  • Avoid writing openly about your wishes and needs on the invitations. Except if you’re giving them only to your close friends.
  • If you decide on a direct approach, make sure you’re sending the same invitation to everybody. You have to do it in one way or another, and you shouldn’t mix things up. If you have some not-so-close people coming with a lot of your good friends, we still recommend sticking with a subtle approach. You don’t want to give different invitations. That is rude, it can be awkward, and it always comes up in conversations.

Subtle Wording on Invitations

So, once again only with a different method, we are answering the question of how do you politely ask for gifts on an invitation. If you have a lot of guests you don’t know so well, you should opt for a subtle approach. You want them to know that you don’t want to be bossy, demanding, and insensitive. The main goal is to show them what you meant with the entire thing and how you think that will be helpful for them too.

For example, you know that common question that bothers everybody, about what to give for birthdays, Christmas, and other occasions. People often wonder How to Ask Someone What They Want for Their Birthday. Now, you get to make things easier for them and give a hint about a gift, so they don’t even have to ask!

Here’s what you can do:

  • Always say how happy you’re about a person coming to the occasion. He or she should feel comfortable with the invitation and don’t get the impression that you’re only interested in the gifts.  
  • Write a line or two about how they don’t have to bring you anything. You should always keep in mind that some people work hard for their paychecks and that they don’t always have a lot of money to spend on gifts.
  •  Say something like:

If you would, however, like to bring a gift…

I will accept gifts but don’t feel obligated to bring anything…

These are only the bald examples, but they should give you a hint about how the invitation should look like. With these phrases, you will avoid creating pressure on people yet you say how you’ll gladly receive gifts from those who can afford them.

If you follow these steps, you’ll most likely get presents from all of your guests. The only difference is that they won’t think your invitation is rude, and most certainly won’t feel obligated to give you something above their budget.

Taking a Risk

Lastly, a lot of people accept the risk of request-free invitation. They can’t bring themselves to write anything about what they want, afraid of how that might be understood by the guests. We only wanted to say how that’s completely normal, and how it might even work in your favor. 

Even without hints on invitations, people know they are supposed to bring gifts. The only thing that they don’t know is what exactly they should get, so if you want a set of particular gifts, that’s not going to happen without hints. Also, hints are necessary if you want some gift alternatives such as experiences, money, gift cards, and similar stuff. You have to tell people you want these things because they can’t just guess it. 

So, if you don’t want anything special for your birthday, wedding, or another occasion, you might as well try the risky request-free invitations. Who knows, you might even be pleasantly surprised!

Final Thoughts

To sum things up, the question of how to say gifts are welcome is tricky, and it could get you in a lot of trouble with your guests. However, you can avoid any inconvenience by following these simple steps we listed above. Of course, first, you should decide on a gift you want to get, then on the guest list, and think all of that through. Only then you’ll be all set to write a perfect invitation that will sound exactly as you want it to. It shouldn’t be too hard. In the end, you can also think of what type of invitation you would like to get if the roles were the other way around. Lastly, we hope that our tips and suggestions will help you decide how to ask for presents on invitations.





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