Engagement party etiquette says that a gift is not necessary, but presents at these parties are becoming more common. The gift need not be expensive or elaborate; a token gift is sufficient, according to Emily Post.
Etiquette rules say that while engagement party gifts are not required, they are given in some regions and in some circumstances. The gifts — and the price of the gifts — are at the discretion of the guests. Any gifts should be opened discreetly, either after the party or away from other guests, to prevent hurt feelings or discomfort for the guests who didn't bring gifts. Gifts for these parties are generally more akin to hostess gifts or smaller, less expensive shower gifts.
Some couples have already begun a wedding registry before the engagement party. Check to see if there is a small gift, such as a picture frame or wedding album, to give them at the party. Attendees should ask the host about a registry, or, if the relationship is close, check with the future bride or groom personally.
If there is no registry, attendees can consider something to make the engagement party more festive. They can bring a bottle of champagne, champagne flutes or a bouquet of flowers.
People can bring a cookbook to start the couple's collection, or they can bring a bottle of wine to help them unwind during wedding planning. A gift card to their favorite restaurant may also help with de-stressing during the planning phase. A gift of services, such as photography, massage or pedicures, is also a good suggestion.