A new survey finds a gap between what guests give and what the wedding couple actually wants.
Affluent individuals are on track with consumer spending trends when it comes to how much one should spend on a wedding gift for a family member or close friend, according to a new survey conducted by Millionaire Corner
The highest percentage of Affluent respondents surveyed in April (41 percent) believes that between $100 and $200 is appropriate to spend on a wedding gift for a close friend or family member. More than one-fourth (26 percent) are comfortable spending $100 or less, while a near equal percentage believe one should spend between $200 and $500.
This is pretty much in line with consumer spending trends tracked by American Express in its new Spending and Saving Tracker which focuses on wedding spending. Respondents said they would spend an average of $144 on a wedding gift for a family member or relative. Affluent respondents said they would spend an average of $251.
Consumer spending trends regarding wedding gifts broke down this way:
· Close family member: $179
· Close friend: $119
· Other relatives: $114
Overall, wedding spending is on the rise for guests, the American Express survey of 1,500 people found. Respondents said they expect to spend an average of $539 for each wedding they attend this year. That’s up $200 from last year.
Related story: Wedding planners stand on ceremony in challenging economy. Read more here.
With that in mind, how much is an appropriate amount to spend on a wedding gift? According to The Knot, a website devoted to all things weddings, there are several factors to consider, including your financial situation, family and social circle conventions, how well you know the couple, and whether you will also be spending a lot of money on transportation to the wedding, lodging and other expenses (if these are unwieldy, you may be forgiven for spending a little less)
The Knot figures you should “portion out your total (wedding gift) sum by event: 20 percent of your total on the engagement present, 20 percent on the shower gift, and 60 percent on the wedding gift.
Consumer spending trends revealed in the American Express survey found a gap between what guests give and what the wedding couple actually wants. Thirty-five percent of respondents said they go for the sure thing and purchase gifts from the couple’s registry, while 32 percent give cash. Meanwhile, more than half (52 percent) of newlyweds surveyed said they would prefer the cash, while just 18 percent wanted something from their registry.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.