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To feel a bit unsure about how much to give?

(64 Posts)
spangledboots Thu 27-Jun-13 21:23:00

Two of my best friends are getting married (to each other) in six weeks or so. It's the first wedding in my group of close friends for me (I'm 24) and I'm starting to worry a bit about the amount it's going to cost! I'm going to try not to spend too much on the outfit etc. but the venue is in the middle of nowhere so the taxi there and back will be pricey (although I'm hoping to find a few friends to share that with) and the price of drinks is also fairly high.

However, my biggest concern is the fact that they've said on the invites that they don't want gifts but rather a 'contribution towards their savings' as they're hoping to buy a house.

I've been invited by myself because I'm single at the moment - none of our single friends have been allowed to bring a plus one.

How do I decide how much to give? :/ I don't know where to start! I'm worried about looking tight if my contribution is too small but I'm not earning an awful lot at the moment. The whole thing is making me feel a bit uncomfortable!

jendot Fri 28-Jun-13 11:32:08

I NEVER give cash. I will buy from a gift list. But if cash is requested I choose a small sentimental gift, something handmade with wedding date, or a beautiful frame for a wedding pic. Depends on the couple. but always Something small that I know they will like.
It's rude IMHO to ask for money!

ShabbyButNotChic Fri 28-Jun-13 11:45:31

My friends got married last year and asked for vouchers for b&q, homebase etc as they has moved into their first house the month before. Me and 4 others all chipped in together and got them a £200 voucher. It looked much more impressive and was about what we would have all spent anyway smile i prefer vouchers to cash as you know they will actually have something to show for it rather than just getting a big shop/filling the car etc

WeAreEternal Fri 28-Jun-13 11:56:38

In your situation I think £50 is a reasonable amount.

Tiredmumno1 Fri 28-Jun-13 12:04:50

All you can do really is give as much as you can afford, I am sure your friends wouldn't want to see you struggling in any way smile

I think the chipping in with friends idea is maybe something to think about.

Just out of curiosity, the invite wasn't in poem form was it?

spangledboots Sat 29-Jun-13 19:59:44

Thanks for the advice smile I really like the idea of clubbing together with a few of my friends and then getting them a small sentimental gift too. When they got engaged I got them a handmade wedding count down board which they loved.

They're both lovely people and (hopefully) don't mean to sound 'money-grabbing' in their invites. I can't help imagining the two of them sitting the day after their wedding and counting up all the cash they've collected. It feels a bit odd to me but I do understand the fact they want to get on the property ladder.

At least I'll know for again!

spangledboots Sat 29-Jun-13 20:00:56

PS - no, invite wasn't in poem form. Exact wording was:

'Since we've already been living together for a while we have accumulated plenty of bits and bobs so are not registering a gift list. Instead, we are hoping to buy a house and ask for contributions towards our savings.'

WhoBU Sat 29-Jun-13 20:14:54

I'm about the same age as you OP and recently had my first wedding. They asked for cash too, towards their honeymoon, and I sent £100. When I get married, I won't have a gift list either - most couples now already co-habit and cash is better. Just send what you can afford.

CloudsAndTrees Sat 29-Jun-13 20:37:26

They are choosing to ask for money, which unless they have been living under a rock all their lives, they know is going to be controversial at best, and offensive at worst.

The most I have ever given in cash was £30, but I would be likely to spend more on a present, unless I saw something particularly appropriate in the sale.

Elquota Sat 29-Jun-13 20:56:28

If people have already got "plenty of bits and bobs" then it's fine to say "no presents thank you". But just leave it at that, don't ask for cash! Or suggest a favourite charity for donations.

spangledboots Sat 29-Jun-13 21:11:15

I think I would just not mention gifts/cash etc. on the invites. If guests wanted to get us something I'd leave it up to them. From my experience with family weddings, guests tend to ask if there's a gift list or anything in particular the couple want.

Oh well, I'm sure it'll be a lovely day smile any suggestions as to where I can look for a nice (but fairly cheap) dress?!

Nottalotta Sat 29-Jun-13 21:16:33

I think asking for cash for their savings is very rude indeed. Honeymoon maybe. I got married last month. We bought our house 3 yrs ago. We really didn't want gifts but it has to be said, people don't like that either! We specified a charity for donations but again it wasn't a popular idea! We ended up saying we don't expect gifts, we'd like donations to this charity but as some people have expressed a preference to buy us something, vouchers for this department store will be greatfully received. Most of our house stuff is second hand so we can buy some nice replacements. My best friend gave us 30quid cash. Which i was grateful for.

TidyDancer Sat 29-Jun-13 21:19:44

Gosh they are coming off as quite rude. You can bet that many others going to the wedding will be thinking the same thing as well.

I would give a small gift only. I wouldn't give cash.

I have been invited to several weddings where the B&G have unfortunately done similar and it was whispered about which was a shame.

spangledboots Sat 29-Jun-13 21:20:48

Their honeymoon is a weekend away so they wouldn't be asking for money for that.

A colleague of mine got a lot of John Lewis vouchers for their wedding and used them to buy furniture for their new house - including furniture for their nursery. I thought it was kind of nice that they were able to use something from their wedding for their new baby. Maybe I'm just a sap!

MajesticWhine Sat 29-Jun-13 22:42:23

I think given your own limited earning power at the moment, then £20 or £25 would be an appropriate amount.

TotesAmazeGoats Sat 29-Jun-13 23:03:16

I am in the same situation, however myself and OH are both involved in the Stag and Hen parties (weekends away) plus room at the hotel that night (middle of nowhere) not to mention clothes etc. We will have spent the best part of £500 quid!! The invite is also requesting money towards honeymoon. I can't afford a holiday this year, so we've decided we're not going to give at all, with all our other contributions.
I don't think £20 in your situation is tight. I would never ask for money, and I certainly think if you do, your guests have the option not to contribute!

Floggingmolly Sat 29-Jun-13 23:04:20

They spent their savings on the wedding, and are now asking guests to contribute to their savings? hmm why don't they just sell tickets and be done with it?

cece Sat 29-Jun-13 23:11:42

I'm another one who doesn't give cash for a wedding gift. I much prefer a gift voucher or something small and personal. I like the idea of a cinema pass or how about something like an annual pass for them both? National Trust?

Justforlaughs Sat 29-Jun-13 23:13:11

I've given anywhere between £10 and £80 for a wedding present, depending on who it is for, how much money they have and whether I have been invited to the main event or the evening party. I've never given more than I can comfortably afford to either. I remember writing our wedding list, a few years ago now. We had everything on it, from a deepfat fryer (at £50, it was the most expensive item) down to radiator airers at £2.50 for a pair!! grin We were honestly just thrilled that people came to see us on our big day, we couldn't have cared less whether they spent loads of money or not. Although I have to admit that opening a huge pile of pressies was great fun. We spent what we could afford on the wedding itself, and would have been most upset if people thought they had to "pay for their seat".

WhoBU Sat 29-Jun-13 23:48:49

Hmm, I think that asking for cash is the future and will only get more common. I don't mind it, being new to the attending-weddings-game.

Elquota Sat 29-Jun-13 23:50:46

Surely asking for anything isn't polite?

Elquota Sat 29-Jun-13 23:51:17

(in terms of presents that is!)

formicadinosaur Sun 30-Jun-13 00:03:20

About 25, the cost of one wedding meal. I'd probably give 50 if hubby was going also

WhoBU Sun 30-Jun-13 00:23:25

No I guess not, but wedding gift lists used to be customary, I think cash will become customary in time.

raisah Sun 30-Jun-13 03:01:02

Club together as people have suggested.
They will probably spend the money on the honeymoon anyway.

Is it possible to book a b&b nearby? Hotel in nearest town?Does the venue have accommodation?

lozster Sun 30-Jun-13 03:03:36

You are young and single . I'm with Formica - give no more than £25 - £20 would be acceptable. I went to a wedding recently and the request was for donations to the honeymoon. Couples who were well off only gave £50. I googled a bit and found the going rate (!) was about £25 per person. Definitely don't feel bad about giving £20-25. The expenses are always relatively more if you are single. When I was your age I had less disposable income too so don't over stretch yourself.

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