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  #1  
June 9th, 2010, 10:13 PM
blondie-lox's Avatar Do NOT feed the Troll
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If you attend a wedding is there a minimum amount to gift the couple? Whether it be cash or merchandise what do you feel is a socially acceptable amount?

What about guests who can't afford to spend that amount, should they decline the invitation? Even if it's very close family?

Thoughts?
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  #2  
June 9th, 2010, 10:33 PM
myblueyez's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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If you attend a wedding is there a minimum amount to gift the couple? Whether it be cash or merchandise what do you feel is a socially acceptable amount?

I don't think there should be a minimum amount, sometimes it really is more about the thought and gesture...
I attended a friend's wedding quite a few years ago, I was not able to spend much on their gift but I did want to get them at least something. It was out of town, so I had to take into account gas, hotel, food and a gift in order to go to this wedding. But it was a good friend and I wanted to be there on their big day...

What about guests who can't afford to spend that amount, should they decline the invitation? Even if it's very close family?
NO... Attending a wedding is about celebrating the union of two people who love each other, not about giving gifts... A nice card doesn't cost much and can sometimes be more meaningful than a dang gravy bowl that will never/rarely be used....
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  #3  
June 9th, 2010, 10:38 PM
MrsSarah1's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Attending the wedding is about witnessing the bride and groom getting married and starting their life together. It has NOTHING to do with gifts. Gifts are nice, and appreciated, but are not required. For many families, taking off working, getting a hotel, transportation and other necessities to attend the wedding is enough to break the bank. Adding a gift to that amount and expecting it, as well as expecting it to be a certain amount, is not acceptable in my book.

If anyone invited me to a wedding in hopes that my contribution to their gift pile would help re-coop their losses, they can just cross my name off the list and save themselves the stamp to mail me an invitation.
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  #4  
June 10th, 2010, 06:21 AM
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I don't think gifts should be required at all...or cash. It's nice, and it's appreciated, and most likely people will bring you stuff, but them taking time out of their day to come celebrate with you should be gift enough. Sounds corny, but that's the way I think about it.
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  #5  
June 10th, 2010, 06:35 AM
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Personally, I would never go to a wedding without a gift. I always give a check or gc $100 a couple. I feel that couples starting their life together can always use a little help.

HOWEVER, if I'm traveling on a plane long ride and paying for my own hotel because the couple decided to have a long distance wedding, I think my gift would be a lot less.
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  #6  
June 10th, 2010, 06:36 AM
AMDG's Avatar Margaret
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I would not have been upset if someone didn't bring a gift to my wedding reception but there certainly is the socially appropriate thing to do. Not sure about out of town guests - they may get a pass but I haven't read my manners books lately
I was taught it was about $50 per eating guest. If I go to wedding with my DH it would be $100. We haven't always been able to spend that much but we try to get close.
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  #7  
June 10th, 2010, 06:39 AM
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I think that the couple should be thankful anyone is giving presents at all. I know I sound rude but If I don't have a lot of money and all I can afford is some 30 dollar gift then you better accept it or take it back discreetly. I'm not going broke just so you can brag about the expensive drink mixer someone gave you.
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  #8  
June 10th, 2010, 06:53 AM
AMDG's Avatar Margaret
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beneath_The_Rose View Post
I think that the couple should be thankful anyone is giving presents at all. I know I sound rude but If I don't have a lot of money and all I can afford is some 30 dollar gift then you better accept it or take it back discreetly. I'm not going broke just so you can brag about the expensive drink mixer someone gave you.
I agree that a couple should be thanking for any gifts received no matter how small. And I also think nobody should feel like they shouldn't come because they can't afford a gift. But the question was about what is socially acceptable, not whether the couple has a right to expect something. Bringing a gift is certainly the socially acceptable thing to do and I am not sure about the $ value - it may depend on the part of the country or how nice the wedding is. I don't really know where I got $50 per person.
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  #9  
June 10th, 2010, 07:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AMDG View Post
I agree that a couple should be thanking for any gifts received no matter how small. And I also think nobody should feel like they shouldn't come because they can't afford a gift. But the question was about what is socially acceptable, not whether the couple has a right to expect something. Bringing a gift is certainly the socially acceptable thing to do and I am not sure about the $ value - it may depend on the part of the country or how nice the wedding is. I don't really know where I got $50 per person.
Sorry lol. I guess I should have added a little more. I admit I don't know much about wedding. The last wedding I went to I was 17 and wasn't required to buy a gift as my family took care of that and i'm not married myself. So I honestly don't know what would be considered a socially acceptable norm for a wedding gift but I would assume that depending on the people, how big the wedding is, etc no less than $50 and i'm certain there are people who would consider THAT cheap. In this day and age it seems like everyone wants some type of Total lavish wedding where they expect only the best of everything. Weddings aren't even about the marriage anymore it's about showing off what you can afford. I do agree that the certain people who go to a wedding may be expected to bring a gift (siblings, immediate family, the inlaws, close aunts and uncles, good friends as a form of gratitude for being invited and give the couple a gift whether it is appliance, money, or whatever else it may be depending on your relationship with them but There shouldn't be a price limit. No one should feel left out and not go to a wedding they were invited to just because they can't afford to buy something extravagant and what I was trying to say in my first post was that a couple shouldn't expect someone to do that and if they know that maybe the person they are planning to invite can't afford an expensive gift they shouldn't get angry over it and hold grudges like i'm sure has happened to some people. If I knew that the couple inviting me to their wedding were the kind of people who wanted something very expensive I probably would decline the invitation and make up an excuse as to why I can't go.

Again though I don't know much about weddings.
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  #10  
June 10th, 2010, 07:20 AM
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I would be very upset if I found out that someone didn't come to my wedding/birthday party/baby shower/whatever just because they couldn't afford a gift.

At the same time, I don't think DH and I could ever afford to spend $100 on someone's wedding present. $50 would be pushing it. If it was a close friend or relative, we'd go anyways. If it was someone I barely knew.. we'd probably skip it. We didn't get presents for DH's parents when they each got remarried, because DH had to miss work to be at both weddings.
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  #11  
June 10th, 2010, 07:48 AM
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I asked this because this year I have 3 weddings to attend. One is my good friend and the other two are two of DF's cousins. I was talking to my good friend last night (the one who's getting married) and she told me that it's $100 per person for a wedding gift. That would mean DF and I would have to give a gift in the amount of $200 per wedding we attend this summer. We don't have that kind of money, it would seriously put strain on us financially to give that amount, because we are a single income family. I told her I don't have that kind of money and giving $100 would still be pushing it and she seemed like too bad, that's the minimum. Now I don't know if I want to go to these weddings because we just can't afford to gift that amount. I'm worried the couple are going to expect a certain amount and we won't come close to it. Ugh.
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Last edited by blondie-lox; June 10th, 2010 at 07:54 AM.
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  #12  
June 10th, 2010, 07:52 AM
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Wow, I would not go to her wedding if she told me a hundred dollars was the minimum. Sounds extremely rude.
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  #13  
June 10th, 2010, 07:58 AM
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Yeah, if someone tells me they expect me to spend a certain amount on them, I tend to just skip the event altogether. I find that incredibly tacky and rude, and it's not a very good friend to tell you you HAVE to break yourself financially just to attend her wedding. Yuck.
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  #14  
June 10th, 2010, 08:07 AM
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That's the thing, she is a good friend. We've been friends since we were 15 but she's kind of gone crazy bridezilla on me. She thinks she can tell me this stuff because I'm getting married 3 weeks after her but I don't think she remembers that I'm a guest at her wedding (she was going to come to my wedding but when she got engaged she decided not to). I told her I don't have that type of money and explained that it would put serious strain on us to spend that type of money on a wedding gift, so I think she *might* understand that *we* can't afford that. I dunno, it's a crappy situation, she's a close friend and I want to be with her on her special day (I was there when she got engaged even) but I'm worried about looking cheap or poor.
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  #15  
June 10th, 2010, 08:10 AM
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Yeah, but if she's going to see you as "cheap" or "poor" because you can't meet her (IMO outrageous) minimum cost, then I would not call her a good friend, no matter how long you've been friends. Good friends don't demand $200 that someone says they can't afford to give, and they don't judge those that can't afford to give it.
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  #16  
June 10th, 2010, 08:14 AM
blondie-lox's Avatar Do NOT feed the Troll
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I do agree with you Kes, she's being really selfish and crazy about her wedding. It's nuts. She's all about her wedding blah blah blah and that its HER day. Umm what about your fiancé? I hate when people make their weddings out to be some crazy day to selfish and the centre of attention, it's about the MARRIAGE and spending the rest of your life with your husband NOT about a white dress, gifts and being the centre of attention. End Rant.
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  #17  
June 10th, 2010, 08:34 AM
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No, and gifts/cash shouldn't be required. You don't get married to get presents ( or atleast you shouldn't, but I'm sure there are some). If it's a close family member I try to get something really nice, but if it's a family member that I've only met a few times I give them cash instead.
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  #19  
June 10th, 2010, 09:54 AM
AMDG's Avatar Margaret
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I found this article:

The Wedding Gift Etiquette Guide
WEDDING GIFTS ARE big business — billions of dollars big. According to research firm The Wedding Report, this year alone guests will spend $6.9 billion on wedding gifts.

Each time an invitation arrives in the mail, wedding guests face a common and sometimes frustrating dilemma: What should I buy the bride and groom, and how much should I spend? Depending on the couple, where they live and their culture, giving cash is either considered apropos or gauche. And then there's always the quandary over the registry, especially when the only two options left are a $200 waffle maker and a $5 garlic press. After all, there's a fine line between breaking the bank to buy a generous gift and looking like a cheapskate.

The idea behind a wedding gift, according to etiquette doyenne Peggy Post, is indeed a noble one: "It is a tangible representation of love and support, a generous offering to help married couples get a head start in their lives together."

It sounds lovely, but for guests who don't know the bride and groom well enough to conjure up such a representation or are on a tight budget, here's a gift etiquette primer to get you through wedding season:

1. How much should I spend on a gift?

The amount you should spend on a gift is one of those gray areas that vary based on the wedding location, your age and your budget. A typical amount, says Betsy Goldberg, features editor at Modern Bride magazine, is $75. If you bring a date, expect to spend twice that amount. Don't be afraid to ask other attendees how much they plan to spend to get a better sense of what people within your social circle are giving, she says.

Though the gift amount is somewhat arbitrary, Summer Krecke, deputy editor of WeddingChannel.com, offers a few guidelines based on the guest's relationship to the bride or groom: If it's a co-worker's wedding, you should spend $75 to $100; a relative or friend, $100-$125; and if it's a close friend or close relative, anywhere from $100 to $150 or more is acceptable.

2. What if I can't afford the $120 five-speed blender because I have four other weddings this month?

Most brides and grooms don't want you to go broke as a result of their wedding. Therefore, guests should always consider their budget constraints. If you've been invited to five weddings that take place within three months of one another, you'll need to take into account expenses for all those events (not just the gifts, but any required travel and lodging, as well). At destination weddings, for example, most couples understand that the $500 you shelled out to attend their Bahamas beach wedding doesn't leave you much to spend on a big-ticket gift. "They appreciate that people go so far to be with them for their wedding," says Goldberg.

Also keep in mind that your gift obligations don't start and end with the wedding. Factor in surrounding celebrations, like the bridal shower, bachelor/bachelorette party and engagement party. Tally it up and you'll probably feel like you need a second job to afford your loved ones' nuptials, making it all the more important you don't break the bank on one gift.

3. Should the amount I give depend on the price per dinner plate or how posh the venue is?

Quite simply, no. "Never think about it in those terms," says Martha Woodham, author of "The Bride Did What?! Etiquette for the Wedding Impaired." Instead, think about it this way: You're not expected to pay for your meal at a friend's dinner party, so why should you be expected to pay for a night of dinner and dancing at a wedding? A gift is separate from the party itself and should not be considered "the admission price to the wedding," says Woodham.

4. If I can't make it to the wedding, do I still give a gift?

Yes. Ideally, says Woodham, guests give gifts to help the couple commemorate the occasion and start their new life together — and that should be the case whether a guest partakes in the wedding festivities or not. "If you care about the couple, you send a gift — not just because you were invited to the wedding," she says.


Again though, people come from such different economic backgrounds I don't think you can put any kind of firm number on it. Sure $100 is nice if you can afford it but many of us would not be able to.
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  #20  
June 10th, 2010, 10:09 AM
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Um, I'm sorry but if she told you min. $100 a person then that is just wrong.

I can't even believe she'd say that to you. Just give what you can & don't worry about it. Tough sh*% if she doesn't like it; anything is better than nothing.
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