Do you give more $ as a gift based on wedding cost?

posted 2 years ago in Guests
Post # 46
253 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

I absolutely don’t base anything on the cost to the couple (what they spend is their decision in my opinion). I base the amount on how well I know them. Most of the recent weddings I’ve gone to have been FI’s friends, so I’ve just given the same amount each time. When my Fiance is in the wedding party, he will adjust what he gives based on his budget and how much he has had to put into the wedding/how many of his own costs he had to cover.

Post # 47
2527 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

We give based on a lot of factors. What we can afford at the time, how well we know the couple, and if we’re giving cash or purchasing a gift. I will admit if the wedding is extravagant I’d be more likely to give a more expensive gift, but that is just one factor in many that we think about before we give a gift. 

Post # 48
1149 posts
Bumble bee

michelleh12 :  In these areas, there is a cover your plate rule (more of a guideline). There are websites here that are updated yearly and show you the average per plate cost of different venues. The thinking behind this is you as a community is “gifting” you a lump sum for you to put down on a house or a car or some other future investment, similiar to how buying a mixer would be contributing to the couple’s future.

This generosity though is often abused and misused. Some people “expect” a lot of wedding money (since they don’t give physical gifts here) and end up throwing a wedding they can’t afford because they assume this wedding money would cover most of the wedding costs. The news of people going into debt and bankruptcy isn’t that rare either….

Post # 49
1350 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

I do not expect most of guests to cover the cost of their plate, my wedding was really my choice to throw. 

When I give gifts I really base it on the closeness of my relationship with the person. 

Post # 50
328 posts
Helper bee

My Fiance and I gift based on what we can afford and how close we are to the couples. If I’m not super close to the couple we will probably gift around $150 if it’s a close family member or friend then we gift around $250-$400.

Post # 51
76 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

I had some couples who gave $100 and some who gave $800+.. it really all depended on their budget and relationship to us and our families and I was not offended at all even though it didn’t fully cover their meal. The amount we made overall from monetary gifts was pretty much close to the overall wedding costs because it all balanced itself out and pretty sure most brides and grooms don’t sit around nitpicking peoples gifts at the end of it

Post # 52
2035 posts
Buzzing bee

No, we give $100-$200 depending on closeness to the couple.  The largest gift we received was $200 from one couple.  Most people gave actual gifts in the $50-$100 range.

Post # 53
2129 posts
Buzzing bee

100% give based on your relationship to the couple. I can’t fathom giving less to a couple because they chose to have a smaller wedding?! My catering was about $400 per person and I would feel SO uncomfortable if my friends gave me that amount. I never expected to “earn” money back from the wedding, AND my parents paid that bill so it didn’t come out of my pocket anyway. 


Post # 54
1737 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

michelleh12 :  The amount I give depends on how close I am to the couple, and my budget – nothing else. It is in poor taste for the bride and groom to expect guests to essentially pay for the couple’s wedding, by “covering their plate.” Gifts should never be viewed as a guest’s obligation.

Post # 55
672 posts
Busy bee

So do you look up what your food is going to cost?  I give a standard amount, if they expect me to cover my plate then that’s their issue.

Post # 56
2433 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: NJ

It is a concern that causes me anxiety! Etiquette wise, it is not expected. If you are invited somewhere, that is the only thing that matters. Be reasonable and presentable.

Then we have societal expectations, which vary from wedding to wedding! Last wedding I went to was the son of a longtime estranged friend of mine (a whole story in itself) and due to funds at the time I gave $50. That was good, for what we could afford then. She snubbed my wedding completely, which is part of the story, after I was Maid/Matron of Honor in hers, but that is for another time. 

I was once gossiped about at a wedding that I RSVPed no to, because I didn’t give the couple a gift. The self-proclaimed etiquette expert declared me rude because I didn’t give a gift for a wedding I was invited to, never mind that I didn’t attend. That is pretty amazing, I can be rude by doing nothing. 

So the answer is : no one the hell knows what to do.

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