The Real Simple Reader Etiquette Poll
Do You Always Have to Bring a Hostess Gift When You’re Invited to Someone’s House for Dinner?
Of course: 49.7%
No, just follow up with a thank-you note: 33%
Only if it’s a fancy dinner: 17.3%
Experts say: “Hostess gifts aren’t mandatory at less formal functions,” says Robin Abrahams, who writes the Miss Conduct social-advice column in The Boston Globe Magazine, “but it’s never wrong to bring one.” Remember: No flowers unless they’re in a vase, and don’t expect wine or food gifts to be consumed at the meal. And, adds Abrahams, “if you don’t know the hostess well, give something regiftable, like candles.”