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Is #AsoEbi Killing the Gifting Culture in Nigeria?




Almost anybody can see that the wedding culture in Nigeria has changed dramatically over the last 10 to 15 years, not only has the wedding industry seen an explosion in recent years but wedding ceremonies themselves have evolved into something that is a far cry from what our parents had some 20 something odd years ago. In particular, one thing that has caught my interest is the gradual fading away of the idea of presenting couples with gifts on their wedding day, the very idea would even seem passé to most.

Most would reason, after spending probably the equivalent of two months’ salary or more on Aso ebi, tailoring expenses, hair and make-up and if you happen to be a bridesmaid or grooms man you can throw in the hen night, stag do and bridal shower into this mix, and very possibly ticket, visa and travelling expenses if your dear friends decide to have their wedding in Turks and Caicos, the couple should be pleased and take your presence at their wedding as a gift in itself, right? Seeing as you probably just spent 3 months of savings on their “own” special day.

But why do we give gifts in the first place? Weddings aside, the art of gift giving has been part of human interaction from time immemorial, gifts serve as a way to define relationships and strengthen bonds with family and friends. It is also a way to show and reinforce our feelings for our loved ones in the most caring and effective way. Wedding gifts in particular, provide friends and family with a thoughtful way of showing love and support to many young couples as they set out to build a life and a home together, which can be a struggle especially with what the dollar is saying these days! So regardless of how much you spend attending the wedding, always budget a gift for the couple, however small it might be.

As noble as this is, the truth is that a lot of us struggle with buying the right gifts for couples. Most times we haven’t got a clue of what to get, a lot of us (well-meaning friends and family) end up just popping down to the nearest homeware store and getting the latest kitchen appliance or gadget that’s within our budget, wrapping it with some fancy paper and presenting this to a couple that probably just received 3 other toasters like yours. These go unused, possibly re-gifted or even sold! It certainly would be easier if we knew the right gift to get.

This is where a gift registry comes in, it is quite simply a couples’ ‘‘wish list” made public. Quite frankly gift registries eliminate the unnecessary angst involved in buying wedding gifts, for one it would ensure that you are giving your loved ones what they actually need and as the registry system is designed to eliminate items that have already been purchased you are pretty sure your gift will be highly appreciated and put to good use, sounds to me like a win-win situation for both the giver and recipient.

So the real question is in the era of two months’ salary Aso ebi and wedding vendors costing an arm and a leg (quite literally sometimes) are gift registries going to work in Nigeria, and how can a bride make it work if she chooses to use one?

I believe so, we all know that wedding celebrations hold a special place in the hearts of everyone, we can all recall quite a number of times where we have contributed in cash or in kind just to make the day extra special for those we love. Having a registry provides the perfect avenue for the couple to allow well-wishers to do this in a personalised fashion and this is where  BKGiftangels comes in.

At BKGiftangels we provide a unique gifting experience for you and your guests, delivering right to your doorsteps, with gifts created from a list of stores across the UK. Creating awareness about your gift registry, will require:

  • Sending out cards informing guests about the existence of the registry, this can go with the invitation
  • Ensuring that it is top of mind by prompting guests in follow up texts and emails about the wedding
  • Calls especially to all our aunties and uncles who are ever so generous with their wedding contributions (thank you), it should really be a breeze!

As part of a special offer, we are offering a $25 gift voucher for a friend who recommends BKGiftangels registry to a friend and $100 to a bride that signs up for our gift registry services (terms and conditions apply).

For more information:

I: @b_k_gift_angels

Sponsored Content


  1. Iris

    October 17, 2016 at 11:16 am

    Lmfao. See my life. I thought this was going to be a thoughtful article. I thought it would explore how the fact that the bride -who knows your pocket size – suddenly expects you to be a millionaire just for her. I thought it would use the asoebi culture to exemplify how after you’ve spent money on that,bridesmaids dress, hair and makeup, shoes, bridal shower, miscellaneous pre-wedding activities, and sometimes a trans-continental plane ticket, not to mention the stress of the week and that one bitchy or financially inconsiderate bridesmaid, you just want all talk of the wedding to disappear – just for a while until you can look your bank account in the eye and come to terms with what the hell just happened to you. I’m not sure why the asoebi section of this article was necessary at all. They could have gone straight to the point.


    October 17, 2016 at 11:28 am

    Great way to go with the sponsored content. If i am buying asoebi, i wont be buying any gifts, but i will book mark this and share with friends who want to use a registry.

  3. Prince

    October 17, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Those selling the Aso-Ebi are not even expecting gifts from you anymore. They already have their gifts.

  4. Tru

    October 17, 2016 at 11:53 am

    I have stopped buying aso-ebi. I’m even avoiding weddings when I can. Economy is too harsh mbok

  5. Ellena

    October 17, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    I didn’t buy aso ebi for the last wedding I attended, I didn’t even buy a gift, I just put my ‘shinkili’ money in an envelope and handed to the bride and that’s how I intend to carry on from now, at least until $1 = N1.
    What a way to engage BN readers tho, If I knew this was a sponsored post…

  6. Bubu

    October 17, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    This is the best way to advertise to BN readers because they like wedding and marriage talk!!

  7. Frida

    October 17, 2016 at 2:19 pm

    But why should I buy a gift after spending a fortune on asoebi? Nigerian brides should pick their struggle abeg.
    I didn’t have asoebi for my wedding as a result guests were very generous…had more than enough gifts and cash gifts. friends were also very generous at my bridal shower.
    Don’t see the essence of asoebi

  8. Left Hand Bionic

    October 17, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    same here, i dont see the essence of aso ebi, maybe cos im not the aso ebi type of person…id rather present the celebrant with a gift than expend so much on the inflated cost of aso ebi… who doesn’t like to be gifted…. gifting all the wayyyyy jare. will check out the website

  9. ATL's finest

    October 17, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    Lol I can’t recall when LAST I bought a gift to someone’s wedding. Hmmmm I think in 2009 :).. Well if i’ve Boughy Aso-ebi, paid for hotel, ,flight, and a rental car & also paid fortune to sew the fabric then guess what?? No gift I won’t lie cuz I may end up bn a slave for U all day too at your wedding of which I don’t mind at all. In fact, these days I DON’T buy aso-ebi & even if I do, I’ve to weigh in on my relationship with U?

  10. Pohy

    October 17, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    Aso ebi that you will not wear again.even picture sef you will not look at again.all unnecessary stress that my people like. Even the culture you speak of does not give a rats as if you are broke. Weddings are a dime a dozen these days. No one is impressed for more than 5 hours anymore.

  11. Olayemi

    October 17, 2016 at 4:28 pm

    Brilliant way to advertise. Great communications team.

  12. Deluxbabe

    October 17, 2016 at 6:18 pm

    Some write up this is.. only to sponsor a vendor.. are u kidding me.. no offence to aso ebi culture oh.. but I was hope this would be a post to shed light on the true meaning of aso ebi and how to redefine it during this harsh economic times. Am yet to see a thrifty or savvy saver wedding these days… without a hefty price tag.. oh well.. Clap for ur self. . Hope the vendor gets some business. .

  13. molarah

    October 17, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    As noted above the post makes a weird segway from the topic to the real content, but I was actually feeling the story until they mentioned the vendor’s gift stores are from the UK. That’s when Chinese laughter set in.

    Bia, vendor, when you connect with stores in Nigeria (or Africa), let us know. In this recession, you people will not fear God!

    • molarah

      October 17, 2016 at 8:49 pm

      *segue, not segway

  14. nnenne

    October 17, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    Told a friend I don’t do Aso ebi and looked upset.
    I didn’t care.
    I was the only one without it.
    I don’t live my life for others
    She got a present anyway

  15. zzzzzzzzzzzzz

    October 18, 2016 at 8:18 am

    From my own side a piece of the sample of the material or color is given and you then go to the market to buy it yourself. No one really has the time to sell any ASO EBI

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