How much should you spend on a wedding gift?

@melissaandre/TikTok sivilla/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘Cover your plate’: Viewers divided after wedding planner breaks down how much guests should spend on wedding gifts

'Guests are not there to pay for your honeymoon'


Vladimir Supica


Posted on Jan 2, 2024

While weddings are supposed to be joyous occasions, they can also be stressful for both the couple and the guests. One of the major sources of that stress for the guests is the common dilemma—how much should you spend on the wedding gift?

A wedding planner based in Los Angeles has decided to tackle the issue, and her answer might not be what you expect. Melissa Andre (@melissaandre) posted a video on March 13, responding to another TikTok user (@lakenbanks_) who asked, “I’m on my way to the wedding and I want to know, what are we giving nowadays?”

In the video, which has over 519,000 views and went viral this week, Andre shares her “potentially unpopular opinions” about wedding gifts and breaks down some of the myths and expectations that surround them. She says, “The first thing you’re going to think about is your financial position, always. And the next thing is going to be how close you are to the couple.”

She continues, “So the average wedding gift in the US is around $100. But you’re gonna give whatever you can, because the couple getting married… shouldn’t have an expectation of your gift and they shouldn’t be making plans with the money that they haven’t even received yet.”

Andre also expresses her disdain for couples who plan their wedding with money they will recoup from their guest’s gifts, calling it “an awful kind of way to talk about your guests.”

“Guests are not there to pay for your honeymoon or to pay off your outstanding vendor bills from your wedding,” she further declares.

She advises couples to rely on what they can afford, noting that expensive weddings aren’t a necessity: “You can have a beautiful wedding at any budget even if it’s, ‘join us for champagne and wedding cake in the garden following the ceremony,’” she says.

The debate around wedding gift etiquette continued in the comment section, with viewers sharing a wide range of opinions.

@melissaandre Stitch @lakenbanks_ final answer: the average $100 but you should always base it on what youre comfortable with. You shouldnt strain yourself economically. A thoughtful card is fine if thats where you are 🖤#weddingplanner #weddinggift #weddingregistry #weddingetiquette ♬ original sound – Melissa Andre I WeddingPlanner

“Where did the stigma of covering a plate come from? That’s how I have been giving gifts but it’s getting more expensive every year,” one commenter wrote.

“Imagine putting the newlyweds in debt. if you can’t afford to go – don’t, COVER YOUR PLATE plus $ gift,” another commenter remarked.

“If you expect your guests to reimburse you as their gift you prob can’t afford to get married,” a third commenter said.

Another commenter asked, “can you as the person getting married ask guests for monetary only instead of actual present? whatever guests can pay!?” to which Andre responded, “I don’t agree with ever specifying you prefer monetary gifts. Although I see people do it.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to Melissa Andre via TikTok direct messages for comment.

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*First Published: Jan 2, 2024, 6:00 am CST