Wedding season is in session and we’ll be writing more posts about weddings in the coming weeks. One of the questions that we hear about more often than not is how much should one gift at a wedding?
Anyone that’s been to a wedding has heard of the gift registry. Some couples, when getting married, will open a registry where they will choose items that they feel they could use. Guests can then choose from these items for a gift to the couple. This option works well since the couple will not get gifts that they won’t find a use for. In addition to this, they get to choose their own gifts!
Over the past two decades though, something interesting has happened all around the world… couples are getting married a lot later in life. Some couples live together for a few years before they decide to make it official. Other couples live separately and when getting married, move in together. In both cases, the couples will have accumulated a lot of household goods. Especially in the latter case, the couple will even have “two” of mostly everything necessary in a household. For this reason, household gifts are no longer as appealing. This, in combination with the fact that weddings have become more expensive to organize, has led to couples asking for cash or “non-boxed” gifts.
The proper etiquette nowadays is to have guest cover their own expenses when attending a wedding (if the couple is asking for cash gifts). Most weddings nowadays will cost about $50/head for the organizing family. If there is an open bar at the ceremony and if there are a few ceremonies leading up to the wedding, the cost will be higher… $80-$100/head is becoming more of a typical occurrence these days.
With this in mind, in most cases, you should try to gift between $50-$100/head when you attend a wedding. If cash gifts have not been requested, then a standard gift that you feel would benefit the couple is the way to go. As a final note, how much you gift really depends on what you can afford. As with any gift, it’s the thought that counts and any couple would always appreciate a thoughtful card along with whatever you decide to gift.