Am I expected to give a gift if I'm attending a destination wedding? If so, when should I send it? Should I spend the same amount as I would for a couple getting married closer to home?

Every wedding invitation carries the obligation to give a gift. Ideally you should send your gift before the wedding, to either the couple (if they live together) or to the bride. You can also mail it to the newlyweds within a month after they return from their honeymoon. (It’s a myth that you have up to a year to give a wedding present.) If you’re spending a lot to attend the event, you may opt for a less expensive item or something you’ve made yourself—often the most meaningful presents cost very little. But do get the couple something. While your attendance at a wedding so far from home is a wonderful gift in itself, a small yet heartfelt token is always appropriate. The one exception is if the couple states, “your presence is your present”—in which case, it’s okay to take them at their word or send a gift, as you like.