Here's How Much Guests Spend On Wedding Gifts

Photo: Martin Poole/Getty Images
As summer wedding season approaches, you may be working on your budget. How will you get to Bora Bora for that destination ceremony? Is the cost per wear for those pumps really worth it? And then, there's the gift to think about. What are you going to give the couple when you finally figure out your own travel situation, outfit, and whether or not your ex will be at the event? While some ceremonies have a registry, Brides magazine looked at exactly how much guests are spending on weddings — and a lot of it has to do with geography.
Using data gathered from Tendr, an online service that allows guests to give cash gifts, Brides found that ceremonies taking place in big cities such as New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut spend the most on gifts: around $200. Similar figures popped up in Miami and Dallas, too. The data didn't show a direct correlation between geography and giving, however.
"People give in accordance with what they can afford and how close they are to the couple, as well as how much of an impact they want to make," Jeff Beil, CEO and cofounder of Tendr told Brides. "The geography is closely tied to income levels and may reflect that people in those areas are more used to and comfortable with larger and cash gifts."
Another factor that affects gift-giving? The time of year. In August, the average gift peaks, cresting at about $183. Compare that to later in the year: Tendr found that weddings in September see gifts around $159. During the holidays, that average drops to $144.
"In January, when everyone is reeling from holiday spending, we see the lowest average — just $121," Beil added. "So while I wouldn't recommend scheduling your wedding to optimize your gifts, if you wanted to do so, shoot for August!"
So if you're balancing a budget with Bora Bora and wedding bells, know that giving what feels comfortable to you is generally the way to go — no need to go all-out. But if you're looking for a few ways to save, we've got some ideas.

More from Work & Money


R29 Original Series