Ready or not, wedding season is just around the corner. Before you know it, your mailbox will be overflowing with save-the-date cards and your weekends will fill up faster than you can say “plus one.” After you book your travel and find the perfect wedding guest dress, there’s just one thing left to do: buy the couple a wedding gift. If you’re at a loss for what to give them, we have some tried-and-true wedding gift ideas newlywed millennials will love.
1Cold hard cash
Giving cash might feel impersonal or tacky, but trust us: it’s not. It’ll help the couple pay for their honeymoon, any outstanding wedding expenses, or a down payment on a new home. If they have a honeymoon registry, you can designate where you’d like your money to go: plane tickets, a spa day, snorkeling, etc. That way, giving cash feels more creative and personal.
2Something from their registry
It goes without saying, but it bears repeating: couples make wedding registries for a reason. When you stray from the registry, even if you have the best of intentions, it might cause more harm than good. You never know what they already have, what they don’t need more of, or what they don’t have space for. Simply put, people who live in tiny New York City apartments don’t typically have space for a five-piece marble cheeseboard set. When in doubt, trust the registry.
3A gift certificate to a nice restaurant
Treat the newlyweds to a fancy dinner out. While going off registry is typically a huge no-no, this is one of the few exceptions to the rule. They can use it for their first date as a married couple or save it for their anniversary. Millennials love experiences, right?
4A nice picture frame or photo album
Some wedding photographers charge extra to put together a wedding album. Save the happy couple a step by gifting them a nice frame or album. Even if they do get one from their photographer, you know us millennials. We can never have too many pictures.
5Or, a gift card to design their own wedding album
Sites like Artifact Uprising make it easy to buy prints, frames, albums, and even design your own wedding album or custom photo calendar. Again: millennials can never have too many pictures.
A lot of wedding guests scroll past nice linens on registries because they’re admittedly not as fun to shop for as, say, a fancy pasta maker or an upscale pepper grinder. But if you do spot them on a registry—or if you’re confident you know the couple’s taste and get them a gift receipt—high-quality bedding, towels, tablecloths, and napkins are unexpectedly lovely gifts. Couples rarely buy nice linens for themselves, but they’ll use them every day.
7A piece of art
This one is tricky but doable—and for the right couple, extremely meaningful. A nice piece of art makes a great gift, but it’s hard to pick out and sometimes impossible to return. If you go this route, we recommend telling the couple you’d like to get them a piece for their collection and then letting them choose it.
This is another thing people rarely buy for themselves, but once they have it, they don’t know how they lived without it. But again, since luggage is (probably) not on their registry, ask the couple before you buy so they can choose the size and color. Then, they’ll be all set for their honeymoon.
9A donation to a worthy cause
These days, couples already have a lot of the things they need. If they’re not big on “more stuff,” a thoughtful wedding gift is a donation to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, or another worthy cause that’s close to their heart.
Most weddings require a lot of travel, vacation days, and money. Above all, the thing your friends will value and appreciate the most is that you took the time to be there on their special day. Stemware is nice but making wedding day memories with the ones you love is priceless.