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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!

EmmelineGoulden Sun 30-Jun-13 10:26:42

£25 is fine. More if you want to and can afford it. Going in with friends and getting something sentimental is also fine - I expect they'll love it.

I agree wwith WhoBU that cash is probably the future for weddings.

The old tradition was based on the idea of people setting up a household together for the first time and that just doesnt fit in with reality anymore. Cash towards a house deposit in many ways is much more in keeping with the intent of the old tradition, but adjusted to the more likely needs of a newly married couple today.

I'm a bit meh about the idea that mentioning it is rude too. Expecting gifts is rude, but the custom to not mention gifts in the invite but still have a huge registry list at John Lewis or where ever is all just a bit of a performance. I think they could have been a bit more "if you wish to give a gift" about it, but mentioning it in the invites just makes things easier for guests really. The vast majority of gusts do want to give something.

Floggingmolly Sun 30-Jun-13 12:06:10

The vast majority of guests do want to give something
Exactly. So let them get on with it. It doesn't actually need mentioning at all really, does it?
Reminders, gentle or otherwise, are completely unnecessary and rude.

EmmelineGoulden Sun 30-Jun-13 14:22:03

I don't find pointers to registries with invitations as reminders at all Flogging. I find information on what the couple would like as a gift, should I choose to give one, to be really useful. I think of them as cheat sheets for the guest. I have been invited to a couple of weddings where I had to go through three people before I found someone with the contact details for the mother of the bride who had the registry details - what a faff!

spangledboots Sun 30-Jun-13 17:06:28

Met my friend (the bride) earlier today and she's getting super excited about their big day now smile

We were both complaining about money woes: her soon-to-be husband is studying for a PhD and is entering the writing up period where he won't be receiving any funding so their income will be halved for the next six months to a year. She earns a little bit less than me and their monthly outgoings are a little bit more than mine so she was asking how I manage to pay the bills. I explained that after I've paid for necessities, I have to sacrifice things like holidays in favour of saving up for a flat. She turned round and said that they're hoping to get an entire house deposit from the 'contributions' given at the wedding...I know for a fact that neither her family or the groom's are especially well off (not in a position to contribute four figure sums anyway!) and there are going to be around 80 at the whole wedding with a further 40 coming to the evening do. I think she's expecting more than £25 from me confused

spangledboots Sun 30-Jun-13 17:08:47

PS - I hope she was joking!

jacks365 Sun 30-Jun-13 17:31:42

She may not be joking but I think she's in for a shock. Don't let her unreasonable expectations get to you, do what you can afford and no more.

AKissIsNotAContract Sun 30-Jun-13 18:04:46

Her expectations are ridiculous, unless houses are very cheap where she lives.

Justforlaughs Sun 30-Jun-13 18:21:58

Wrap up a brick and a £20 note!

LondonInHighHeeledBoots Sun 30-Jun-13 18:36:39

Her expectations may be coming from somewhere else - I know in the parts of Ireland where much of my family live, the minimum polite cash gift for a wedding is roughly 200 Euro for a work colleague, 500 for a friend or cousin and 800 odd for a sibling. And they are not in wealthy circles, they are fishermen.

I think give what you can afford - if you were getting married how much would she be expecting to spend on your wedding? Would she be financing your house move? Cos I think that is unlikely. It might not be a bad idea to mention that to her as gently as possible though.

Although I personally see nothing whatsoever asking for cash - surely the point of a present is to give someone what they want? Otherwise one winds up with a house full of engraved photo frames and 'Love, Laugh, Live' signs that you can't even get rid of that honestly, no one really wants? I don't find guestlists or requests rude at all, merely helpful if I think about it.

Also, a wedding meal does not in any way cost £25 formicadinosaur, a person's attendance at a wedding costs a minimum of about 60 odd quid. Not in any way suggesting you should be covering your 'cost' OP, just noting.

Also, BHS have quite a good sale on nice dresses for weddings, picked up a nice one for ascot for about a tenner last week.

hermioneweasley Sun 30-Jun-13 18:39:54

Sounds like she's got a bit carried away/wishful thnking. A car, wedding and buying a house is a bit unrealistic if one of you isn't going to be earnings for 6 months!

Are either of them Mediterranean? There is a tradition of giving significant money at Greek/Turkish/Italian weddings.

pudcat Sun 30-Jun-13 18:48:47

Why doesn't your friend have a small wedding and use the money saved for a deposit on a house. Asking for cash - especially if she thinks she will be given enough for a deposit - is greedy.

cece Sun 30-Jun-13 19:05:42


£20,000 (say for a deposit of sorts) divided between 80 guests is £250 pp...

She is bvu

spangledboots Sun 30-Jun-13 20:12:08

They're looking to buy just outside of Glasgow, I believe. I'm not totally sure of house prices in those areas as I'd be keen to buy a flat in the city instead.

I honestly don't think me making any comment to her at this stage would do much good at all! Wouldn't want anything to overshadow their big day smile

I think she's just realising that a lot of the rest of us in our friend group are saving up and she likes to 'keep up' so to speak. One of our male friends has just bought his flat and I think she might be a tad jealous that they won't be able to do that right away. I know I'm a tiny bit jealous of him owning his own place but he's been saving hard for five years so I know I'll get there one day.

wafflingworrier Sun 30-Jun-13 20:18:21

just give what u can, we asked 4 money and some guests gave £10 as they were still students at the time so we were glad they could come at all, and in the end all the gifts put together was still a really good amount of money and a real help

if she gets annoyed then that's her fault

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