Coming up with the right wedding present can be tricky. You want to give the couple something they’ll treasure without breaking the bank. You want your gift to last, to be something they’ll love. So what should you buy?
Wedding website The Knot suggests spending:
- $50-$75 for co-workers, distant relatives or casual friends.
- $75-$100 for most relatives and friends.
- $100-plus for close friends and family members.
Whatever you give, it’s acceptable to include the receipt, making it easier for the couple to return a gift. Otherwise, they might wind up listing your item for sale on eBay. Follow these rules, and that won’t happen.
Rule #1: Start with the registry
This is a no-brainer. Most engaged couples have a registry, things they’re practically guaranteed to like. If you’re wary of registries, we get it. You want to give something special, that’s commendable. But remember, even Santa gifts off lists.
Rule #2: Go with cash
Cash is still king and acceptable as a wedding present. In a survey by website FiveThirtyEight.com, 94 percent of people said they’re totally fine with getting the green stuff. With typical wedding costs upwards of $35,000, can you blame them?
As a practical matter, writing a check is more secure than handing over currency, especially if sent through the mail. Beware of addressing the checks to Mr. and Mrs. Newlywed; they won’t be able to cash it until last names are changed, which can take awhile.
Rule #3: Gift cards are good, too
An alternative to currency, gift cards can be used at an ever-expanding number of department stores, markets, specialty retailers, restaurants, airlines and elsewhere. Consider buying gift cards from wherever the couple is registered so they can get something that wasn’t bought for them.
Rule #4: Gift an experience
Help the engaged couple make memories with gifts of prepaid weekend retreats, travel gift certificates, a cooking class for two, a Netflix subscription, or a subscription to wine or dining clubs.
Rule #5: Gift a lifestyle
Get the couple something they wouldn’t buy for themselves. Think luxurious gifts such as super-soft pillows or towels with high thread counts that make a couple feel like they’re waking up in a resort or visiting a spa.