July 21, 2024

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Are bridesmaids required to buy a wedding gift?

2 min read

At age 31, I’m perhaps blessed that I’ve only have been asked to be in two weddings. Not because I don’t think weddings are fun (they are!) but because the cost associated with being in a bridal party is cripplingly high.

By the time the actual nuptials roll around, I’ve run a marathon of festivities — an engagement party, bridal shower, bachelorette party — many of which require a gift. On the day of the wedding, I feel like I’ve already paid a small fortune to celebrate my friend, so does the happy couple really need me to purchase them an air fryer?

Not including a gift, bridesmaids spend, on average, more than $1,600 being in a wedding, according to 2024 data from The Knot. Then, you’re supposed to shell out another $100. To me, this feels like robbery.

To see if I was being totally unreasonable, I talked to etiquette and financial experts. Here’s what they had to say.

Tori Dunlap, founder of Her First 100k

“Striking a balance between what you can afford and the general expectations for being in the bridal party is key.

If you’re already spending a considerable amount on these activities, it’s absolutely OK to scale back on the wedding gift. In fact, many couples understand the financial commitment that comes with being in the bridal party and don’t expect an extravagant gift on top of everything else.

My advice is to communicate openly with the couple. Let them know that you’re thrilled to be part of their special day and explain your situation honestly. Often, a simple conversation is all it takes. A heartfelt note, a small but meaningful gift, or even just your presence can be just as valuable.”

Allison Cullman, vice president of brand strategy at Zola

“It is customary for members of the wedding party to give a gift, but it doesn’t have to be of large monetary value. It is a gesture of love. 

Consider what options are available to you. Maybe the couple has a cash registry and you can donate a small amount. You could opt for something small from their wedding…



2024-06-23 11:00:00

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