Money Moral Dilemma: Friends' wedding will be smaller than mine was, so should I get a smaller gift?

edited 1 November 2022 at 12:59PM in Weddings & anniversaries
39 replies 34K views
MSE_KelvinMSE_Kelvin MSE Staff
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edited 1 November 2022 at 12:59PM in Weddings & anniversaries
This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

I’m going to a wedding soon and the couple getting married came to mine, which was an all-day event including a three-course meal and an evening buffet. They gave us £30 and a bottle of Prosecco as a present. Their wedding doesn’t start until 5pm, and the invitation says only entrées will be served. Because of that, I'm planning to give them a gift of similar value to the one they gave us - usually I’d spend more, but given their wedding will be a smaller event, is it OK to spend less?

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  • diystarter7diystarter7 Forumite
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    Different people have different priorities and though many may want to splash out on their big day, many can't afford it.
    It is important not to forget that they have invited you and it is often an honor to be invited to any wedding/party/etc.
    One should never judge the size/value of their gift based on the other capacity/choice of how large or small an event is going to be.

    You should base the gift on your friendship/etc and can use as a yardstick the monetary value of their gift to you if you wish but never on what they are to feed you, where this is and for how long.

    We had three weddings this year and as all of our other family were invited we consulted and agreed a set value based on what the hosts had gifted in the past and their closeness to us.  We would never borrow money to gift or have a party etc and keep our gifts to what we deem reasonable. One of my siblings is is very well off via hard work and they often go very high on the gift value at times when they do that we and my other siblings never follow

    In conclusion, never base your gift on what the capacity of the other is to hold an event as  we all have different financial circumstances/priroties and can't tell from a distance what their current financial situation is.


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  • MalMonroeMalMonroe Forumite
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    Size of weddings and/or gifts has nothing whatsoever to do with anything.

    Just get the gift you can afford that you feel is most appropriate for your friends. Best not to over-think it and just give something they will appreciate.  
    Please note - taken from the Forum Rules and amended for my own personal use (with thanks) : It is up to you to investigate, check, double-check and check yet again before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my posts. Although I do carry out careful research before posting and never intend to mislead or supply out-of-date or incorrect information, please do not rely 100% on what you are reading. Verify everything in order to protect yourself as you are responsible for any action you consequently take.
  • No1ContributorNo1Contributor Forumite
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    First Post First Anniversary
    If you are a true friend be generous. Give them as much as you would like to have received from them, more than they gave you. You had a large wedding, generously. Now extend or continue that generosity. “Do as you would be done to.”
  • DmapDmap Forumite
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    Second Anniversary First Post
    Yikes! I'm willing to bet that it's never occurred to most people that a wedding gift should be related to the perceived value of the hospitality they receive. 
    I guess good for you for having an inkling that thinking so may be somewhat warped, and for asking the question.  But really, give what you normally would for the wedding of a friend of this rank.  And hold your head high as a result.
  • Ed264Ed264 Forumite
    56 Posts
    10 Posts First Anniversary
    Perhaps your friends can't afford the lavish wedding you had.

    You've indicated that "I'm planning to give them a gift of similar value to the one they gave us".

    If you give your friends £30 and a bottle of Prosecco, my guess is that they will be happy with that. 
  • sclaresclare Forumite
    52 Posts
    Eighth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Since when have wedding gifts been essentially payment for attendance, with their value tied to the amount spent on the reception?
    Do you did the same with birthday presents too, OP?

    A gift is an expression of warmth and generosity on someone's special day. In fact if the bride and groom cannot afford a big event, surely they are deserving of a larger gift than someone who can afford to spend a small fortune on a single day? 
  • bikagabikaga Forumite
    119 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts
    It could be that both their smaller wedding and their smaller present for you are because they just can't afford more. You'd probably be aware of that, so it's up to you whether you want to punish them for something they can or can't change.

    Or maybe they just have a different attitude to weddings.

    Or they're a bit stingy, in which case, again, up to you how you react to that. Pretty sure they won't mind getting what they gave you.
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