Wedding Gift Etiquette | The Most Popular Questions

The summer months are fast approaching, and with warmer temperatures comes the influx of weddings. What to wear? What wedding gift to buy? What to write in the wedding card? Is it weird to bring two pairs of shoes to the wedding? It’s easy to let the pre-wedding panic overshadow the excitement of your loved ones joining together in holy matrimony. At least we’re saving you the stress of wedding gift etiquette with our countdown of the most popular questions. So before you end up throwing in the towel and getting a voucher, take a look through the below for all you need to know.

Photo: ABC Wedding Gift Etiquette

Photo: ABC

#1 What wedding gift to buy?

No surprises here, the number one question is along the lines of ‘what wedding gift should I buy?’ Ultimately, this is subjective to the couple that you are buying for, however there are a selection of sure bets that will always please! From celebratory champagne flutes to guest books for special messages on the day. Take a look below at some of our suggestions.

#2 How much should I spend on a wedding gift?

The age old question, how much should I spend on a wedding gift? A lot of discussion has been had around the correct etiquette for this, and with a variety of factors influencing the final amount there is ultimately no definitive answer. However, here are a few things to help your decision. Consider your relationship with the happy couple, are you family or an old colleague? Are the couple paying for each guest to be fed (and watered if you’re lucky) throughout the day? Lastly, have you travelled abroad for the wedding/stag/hen already? After thinking over the above, as a rough guide the average spend on a physical wedding gift comes out at around £50.

#3 Do I need to get the bride’s parents a present?

Simply put, this isn’t a necessity, but more of a nice gesture. Traditionally it’s the bride’s parents who fund the day from start to finish, so as you can imagine things can become pretty costly. Especially if you are close to the family as well as the bride and groom, we would suggest a nice way to show your gratitude would be to get a little something special for the parents of the happy couple. An empty frame ready to fill with photos from the day is a nice touch or perhaps a vase to put the bride’s bouquet in. Here are some of our top picks.

#4 How much cash should I give for a wedding gift?

There are multiple questions that come to mind when considering how much is the right amount of money to gift at a wedding. Firstly, are you attending the wedding solo? As a couple? Is this a family member? Are the bride and groom from a particular culture? When considering a traditional English wedding and taking all of the many questions above into account, the general consensus comes out at around £20-£30 if you are riding solo and £50 if you are attending with a partner. If you are attending a wedding where the bride and groom are from a certain culture it’s definitely worth doing some research into the etiquette to follow.

#5 What are the wedding gifts per year?

With one year of marriage under the belt, the annual anniversary celebrations can commence. In the same way that we celebrated the happy couples wedding day, traditionally gifts are given with a theme corresponding to each year.  Here’s a breakdown of the anniversaries to note and the gifts to get your loved ones..

  • Year 1 – Paper
  • Year 5 – Wood
  • Year 10 – Tin
  • Year 15 – Crystal
  • Year 20 – China
  • Year 25 – Silver
  • Year 30 – Pearl
  • Year 40 – Ruby
  • Year 50 – Gold
  • Year 55- Emerald
  • Year 60 – Diamond


Written by Emma Bowkett

Emma Bowkett

Emma Bowkett

Writer and expert