According to a 2017 Credit Karma/Qualtrics survey, millennials spent $770 on average to attend a wedding. If you plan to attend a few weddings this year, all of the extra expenses could end up breaking the bank. Based on the millennial population alone, millennials could have saved $58 billion if they decided to RSVP “no” during a given wedding season. One of the largest expenses is the wedding gift, with many struggling to determine how much is an appropriate amount to spend when attending a wedding.
Many guests are clueless when it comes to what they should spend on a wedding gift. If you’re invited to multiple weddings, but don’t know how much to spend on a gift, here are some words of advice.
Recognize your relationship
Your relationship with the couple will determine the appropriate amount you should spend on a wedding gift. Zola, a wedding registry and wedding retailer, recommends spending $50 if you’re an acquaintance, coworker or distant relative. If you're a close friend or a direct relative of the bride or groom, you should spend between $100 and $150 on a wedding gift.
If you're invited to multiple wedding events, you should bring a gift for each. It's advised to use the 20-20-60 rule. This rule states that you should reserve 20% of your budget for the engagement gift, another 20% for the bridal shower gift, and the remaining 60% for the wedding gift.
Additionally, if you’re invited to a wedding you cannot attend, you should still send a gift. You want the happy couple to know you’re thinking of them even in your absence.
Consider your budget
Before you begin buying all your wedding gifts for the season, set a budget. Showing the bride and groom you care doesn’t have to put you in debt. Get creative and use the couple’s registry to find gifts that are reasonably priced and useful.
If you’re on a limited budget, try going in on a gift with a group of your friends. This way you can buy a bigger ticket item but still stay within an acceptable price point.
Know when to give
It used to be that you had a year to give the bride and groom a gift, but times have changed. It's now only appropriate to send your gifts before or after the wedding. Wedding etiquette experts say that it's still acceptable to send gifts up to six months after the wedding.
If you choose to send your gifts ahead of time, this may give you more time to save for the wedding festivities. Purchasing everything all at once may cause financial stress.
Check the registry
Couples enjoy gifts from their registry. After all, they picked out everything on the list. If you want to select your own gift, try pairing it with something on the registry. There should be items on the registry that fit within all budgets.
It may also be wise to purchase off the registry right away. Usually, the closer it is to the wedding, the fewer items there are available on the registry. If you don't want to get stuck purchasing toilet seat covers, buy your wedding gift in advance.
All weddings come with a price tag. The more organized you are, the easier it will be to budget for wedding-related expenses. You don’t need to go into debt over wedding season. No matter what your budget is, get creative and let the happy couple know you care.