How much do you give for a wedding gift at an Indian wedding?
After hearing stories from newlyweds of receiving $11 from a family of 4 that attended a 3 day wedding affair, to a couple that gave $25 for a 6 event wedding week, we decided to write an article to help guide you and hopefully your wedding guests on wedding gift giving at an Indian wedding. Share this with friends and discuss with your parents- you may be surprised at their thoughts.
After the wedding, you will be right back in front of the computer writing down what you received from your guests. Add a column to your guest list spreadsheet and start opening the gifts and envelopes. It is tedious, but it can also be a fun part of being newlyweds. Couples use the money they have received from their guests in many different ways, some use it to pay off the wedding, go on a honeymoon, a down payment on a house and a slew of many other ways.
In the past, etiquette stated that your gift should equal the cost of your plate at dinner, but that no longer applies. For example, if your best friend has a small intimate affair at a state park, you wouldn’t necessarily pay your plate. The better way to handle this is to think about your relationship with the person getting married.
Still unsure of what or how much to give? Here are some guidelines:
• Co-worker and/or a distant family friend or relative: $50-$75
• Relative or friend: $75-$100
• Close relative or close friend: $100-$200
Depending on where you live, people may give more. These are just guidelines, it varies with every family and wedding. We have newlyweds that received $501 from their close family.
Wedding Gift Ideas and Tips:
1. It’s a good idea to spend more than $50 on a gift or to at least give $50 no matter who it is.
2. If the couple has a registry, buy something for them and have it delivered. These are gifts that they handpicked, so you can’t go wrong here. Ship it, don’t bring it.
3. If you are part of a group of friends, you can all chip in for a large ticket item on the couple’s registry. Often times couples put items on their registry that they wouldn’t normally be able to afford or purchase for themselves.
4. According to Catey Hill, resident financial expert at David’s Bridal, the average typical cash gift is around $150.
5. If you are heading out of town for a wedding and/or to a destination wedding, it’s ok to give less.
6. If you are you are unable to attend a wedding, you can opt to send a gift. Although this is not customary etiquette for South Asian weddings, this is seen in other cultures as the norm.
7. If you plan on writing a check, make it out to either the bride OR the groom, NOT both. They may not have started a joint bank account yet – so addressing it to one of them will make it a little bit easier for them to cash/deposit. Also, if you are making a check out to the bride, use her maiden name.
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