Guests still open wallets to celebrate weddings

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But one group of guests stood out as in need of an etiquette refresher on gift giving—single men. More than 4 in 10 single men said they were more likely to attend the wedding and not bring a gift at all.

"Every wedding invitation carries the obligation to give a gift," says Post. "If you're spending a lot to attend the event, you may go for a less expensive item or something you've made yourself. But do get the couple something. There is no price range, as it's too different for each person and their situation."

Where people do have a little more leeway are in all the celebrations leading up to the walk down the aisle. Among those polled, only 10 percent said they felt compelled to purchase something for the engagement party and 37 percent for the bridal shower.

"You don't need to send a shower gift to the bride if you can't attend the shower itself," says Post. "However, as only close friends and family of the bride are usually invited to the shower, chances are you know her well and may want to send her a shower gift to celebrate anyhow."

In the end, attending a wedding is about sharing a once-in-a-lifetime moment with close friends and family—even if all the guests don't agree on what makes the event so special. Women we polled said that the "I do's" and seeing the bride’s gown were tops. And for the guys? It's the food at the reception.

Confused about Wedding Etiquette? Read more from contributor Anna Post:

Is a wedding gift required if I'm spending a lot of money to attend a faraway wedding?

Is it better to mail a wedding gift or bring it to the wedding?

What costs are we expected to cover for our guests at our destination wedding?

What should I do if one of my bridesmaids loses her job?

Who pays for the bachelorette party?

We are inviting more shower guests than we can invite to the wedding. Is this okay?

For more information on the survey, visit The Associated Press.

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