Do You Bring a Host or Hostess Gift to a Wedding Shower?

Here's the answer, once and for all.
Naoimh O'Hare - The Knot Associate Commerce Editor
Naoimh O'Hare
Naoimh O'Hare - The Knot Associate Commerce Editor
Naoimh O'Hare
Associate Commerce Editor
  • Naoimh writes articles for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in shoppable roundups from gift guides to wedding fashion
  • Before working on editorial content, Naoimh wrote storefront descriptions for some of The Knot Worldwide's many wedding vendors
  • Naoimh studied creative writing at the National University of Ireland, Galway
Updated Jul 14, 2022
We have included third party products to help you navigate and enjoy life’s biggest moments. Purchases made through links on this page may earn us a commission.

Throwing a shower is no easy feat, from researching cool bridal shower ideas to organizing the food, managing RSVPs and a whole lot more. With that in mind, you might be looking for a thoughtful present to thank your host with the most. Unsure about bridal shower hostess gift etiquette? Don't sweat it. We're answering all the biggest FAQs below, including whether you have to give a gift, how much to spend and when to hand it over. So, before you pick up a sweet thank-you gift for your wedding shower host, read our top tips and etiquette advice below.

Do you give a gift to a wedding shower host?

Buying a host or hostess gift might seem like the natural thing to do when it comes to any type of party, but it's a little different for prewedding events like wedding showers. Whether or not you should consider showing your gratitude through a gift depends on who the party is for (i.e. if it's for you or someone else). The advice is different if you're attending as the guest of honor vs. attending as a regular guest.

If you're the soonlywed

Brides and grooms, listen up. If this wedding shower is for one or both of you, it's considered good etiquette to thank your host accordingly. For many couples, the easiest and most appropriate way to do this is with a small thank-you present. It doesn't have to be anything over the top or expensive—a small token of your gratitude paired with a handwritten thank-you note will do.

If you're a guest

Buying a present is a good idea if you're the soonlywed(s), but do you bring a hostess gift to a bridal shower if you're attending as a guest? Generally, you're not expected to take anything with you for the host (though you should be sure to thank them for having you on your way out). Instead, it's typical for guests to bring a wedding shower gift for the happy couple—and their registry is a great place to start.

How much should you spend on a wedding shower host gift?

When deciding how much to spend on a hostess gift for your wedding shower, there are two important things to keep in mind. Firstly, did your host splash a little extra cash on bringing the perfect bridal shower theme to life, serving gourmet snacks or reserving an extra-nice venue for the afternoon? If you get the feeling that they went above and beyond to make your shower a success, consider increasing your budget slightly.

Secondly (and most importantly), give some thought to how much you can comfortably afford to spend. There's no set amount when it comes to gifts for your prewedding party hosts, so choose a budget that feels right for you. Whether that's $20, $50 or $70, it's really the thought that counts.

What makes a good gift for a wedding shower host?

You've decided to buy a present and your budget is set, but what is a good gift for a bridal shower hostess really? Depending on who is hosting your shower, you may or may not know them particularly well. If you are close with the person, choose a gift in line with their interests. For example, your football-obsessed sister might appreciate merchandise from her favorite team. Or for your always-accessorized bestie, consider a cute new pair of earrings.

On the flipside, if your shower is being hosted by a friend of your parents or a relative you're not super close with, you might be feeling a little stumped. If that's the case, there are plenty of classic gift ideas that almost anyone would appreciate. Lean toward favorites like candles, wine, bath products and chocolates. (And remember, a handwritten thank-you card is a perfect accompaniment to any gift.)

When should you give your wedding shower host gift?

It's perfectly fine to bring your gift with you on the day if the shower is at your host's home. Whether you hand it over at the start or end of the event is up to you, but try to get a moment alone with them so you can properly express your thanks. If, however, the shower is at a separate location (i.e. not their home), the best time to give your bridal shower host or hostess gift is a few days after the party. Otherwise, they'd have to add keeping tabs of your thank-you gift to their list of hosting duties for the day. Another pro to sending your present after the shower? You can be more specific in your thank-you note about the details you loved the most.

What happens if you have multiple wedding shower hosts?

Figuring out wedding shower hostess gift etiquette is one thing when you've got a single host, but what happens when there are multiple people planning the party? If that's the case, it's still a nice gesture to thank your hosts with thoughtful gifts, but you can adjust your budget accordingly to accommodate the extra people. It's also okay to spend a little extra on a particular host if they took charge of most of the planning or offered up their home as the venue.

When it comes to deciding on the actual presents, you might be tempted to buy the same thing for everyone. Before you do that, consider including at least one unique item in each person's gift bag (think: their favorite candy or a coaster personalized with their name). That way, every one of your wonderful hosts receives a gift as special as they are.

Up Next
  • Four wedding shower host and hostess gifts: wooden serving spoons, spoon rests, a succulent, and a thank-you gift box
    The 20 Best Wedding Shower Host Gift Ideas