When it comes to gifts, there is no right or wrong way to spend your money. It all comes down to your personal budget. According to Lizzie Post, etiquette expert and co-host of Emily Post’s “Awesome Etiquette” podcast, cash is a perfectly appropriate present. Some couples actually prefer it.
But don’t make the mistake of gifting your buddies a cash envelope without explaining why. You can’t expect the couple will identify it as a present right away.
Post tells CNBC Make It that when guests “deliver a check or cash without a notation indicating what it’s for, it may be pretty odd.” “Just having a card with cash appear in it may not be enough.”
Remember to include a note. It tells the couple who gave them the gift and helps you to customize an otherwise impersonal gift. “It allows you to write your intention,” Post explains. “You might give them a check for a specified amount and tell them.
Is It Rude To Give Money As A Gift?
Giving money as a present is not considered impolite in general.
In many respects, it might be the ideal present because it lets the receiver to pick what they want to buy rather than having to cope with whatever items they get.
This is especially useful if you are confused what to get someone or do not know them well.
In other cases, it is considered normal to send someone money as a present.
At a Bah Mitzvah, for example, it is usual for the honored young man to receive money from his friends and family.
Another example would be grandparents giving tiny money in birthday cards for their grandkids, which, while cultural, is not necessarily anticipated.
However, there are several situations in which giving money may look impolite.
Money presents, for example, may be considered disrespectful by some since they imply that you did not take the time or effort to purchase them a gift.
Alternatively, if you give them a little sum of money that does not equal the overall cost of the other presents they have gotten, the receiver may believe that you do not value them as highly as their other visitors.
There is a fine line – if you are unclear if someone will appreciate cash, honesty is the best policy. As a gift giver, inquire as to what your family member or receiver truly want.
Finally, if you intend to provide money to someone in need, some may see this as a philanthropic gesture and may react negatively.
Before sending them money, it’s a good idea to ask them what they need and how you can assist.
How to Make a Creative Money Gift?
Swann adds that using Venmo, Zelle, or other electronic methods to donate cash is entirely permissible now. (It’s also totally fine to write a thank-you message by email if you’ve received a monetary present delivered electronically.) “Show your appreciation with a meaningful email—a SMS may be too quick, and an emoji is not the ideal form of thank you,” Swann advises.
Here are a few more ideas on how to present money as a gift.
Include a touching note
Make sure your receiver understands how much you love and appreciate them no matter how you offer money—even if it’s just a Venmo. “Include a letter to the recipient that indicates you’ve thought about it and that there’s meaning behind it,” Swann advises. “If they’re a gardener or a sports fan, you might say something like, ‘Here’s to your next golf game,’ or ‘Here’s a little bit to help you as you expand your garden.'” The thought, like every other gift, is what matters.
Elegantly fold it
Origami skills are an excellent way to artistically offer money—fold your dollar bills into hearts to express your love, or a bouquet of flowers for a wedding gift.
Tie it to another present
While money may be the focal point of the present, it does not have to be the only item given—you may nestle the cash within a basket filled with sweets, beauty products, or other delights that the recipient might like. Take it a step further and use money to wrap another gift.
Make a money tree.
We all know that money does not grow on trees, but you may make it appear that way. There are several methods for creating a money tree gift basket. Attach banknotes to a styrofoam topiary shape (use easy-lift scotch tape to remove them without harming the money) or gift cards or money to a branch or a living plant (we’re betting on a money plant).
Include it in a surprise ball.
If you’ve never seen a surprise ball, it’s a big ball of crepe paper that the receiver unravels, uncovering trinkets (and, in this case, cash) along the way. All you need is a large roll of crepe paper, your money present, plus a few additional interesting items (think tiny figurines, bracelets, or pieces of candy).
Experiment with the concept of “dough”
Wrap your money in a loaf of bread, a rolling pin, or even a (empty!) jar of Play-Doh.
Disguise your financial donation
Use the packaging from another desirable present, such as a box of chocolates, a tin of tea, or a jewelry box.
Give a seasonally appropriate monetary present.
You may roll the money up and set it in a transparent ornament to hang on your Christmas tree, or you can place it inside plastic Easter eggs and let your receiver seek for their treasure.