How much should you give for wedding gifts?

Posted at 5:18 PM, Apr 19, 2017

Spring and summer wedding season is upon us. And when it comes to what to give the happy couple, there's a new trend that may have you re-thinking your gift. The bride and her dress is usually the star of any wedding day. But now, the gift you give is getting a little more attention.

Amanda Kerns says many factors determine how much she shells out.

"Usually it would be around anywhere between $50-$100 depending on how much I travel to get there, how close they are, if it's old relatives I haven't seen in 20 years," Kerns says.

That's why she was surprised to hear just how much people were spending on gifts. New findings show nationwide the average cash gift in 2016 was about $160, according to wedding registry website Tendr. And gift amounts spike in the summer season.

For Mark Halliday, the average made sense.

"I think that's about right yeah," Halliday says. "I mean because most of the weddings you have to think what are they doing on their end to make you a part of their wedding to make you a part of their life. I mean it's not cheap to be...  invited to a wedding."

Wedding planner Brynn Swanson says there is a range.

"I would say probably $50 and over for a wedding it's probably the base," Swanson says.

But for many couples she works with, Swanson says the gift is less about the dollar amount.

"I think more than ever couples are saying you know your gift to us is being at the wedding," Swanson says. "Because they know that airfare and hotels and attire and all of that stuff sort of adds into a gift for the couple."

She's seeing new trends like couples asking for donations for their honeymoon or photography albums. And if you can't shell out the cash, Swanson says get creative, don't overspend.