Cash As A Wedding Gift – How Much Do I Give?

Are you planning to give money as a wedding gift but don’t know how much you should give? Maybe the couple has asked for cash instead of gifts and you aren’t sure what the appropriate amount is?

Or are you curious and want to know more? No matter what your question might be, we are here with the answers for you! 

Knowing how much money is appropriate to gift for a wedding can be tricky, especially if you have never given cash as a wedding gift before.

You head online for some guidance but are met with a wealth of conflicting and contradicting advice, leaving you unsure where to turn or who to trust.

Frustrated and disappointed, you wonder if you will ever know how much cash to give. With the wedding day looming, you start to panic, what are you going to do?

Well, you can sit back and relax, as we have you covered! Today we are here to tell you how much cash you should give as a wedding gift.

We cover a range of traditional weddings and let you know how much money you should give depending on your relationship with the happy couple. Just keep reading to find out how much money you should give as a gift. 

Giving cash as a wedding gift can be a practical and appreciated choice, but it’s important to keep in mind that the amount you give should be within your budget and based on your relationship with the couple.

Remember, a heartfelt note or card can also go a long way in expressing your congratulations and well wishes for the newlyweds, even if you are not able to give a large monetary gift.

How Much Cash To Give As A Wedding Gift

Let’s dive straight into it! How much cash you should give as a wedding gift depends on a  few factors. Consider these before deciding how much money to put in an envelope as a wedding gift. 

  1. Your relationship with the couple. If you are close family or friends with the couple, you might want to give a larger amount than if you are acquaintances or colleagues. 
  2. Your financial situation. If you can afford to give a large gift, you might want to. However, if you are on a tight budget, you will want to give an appropriate amount without breaking the bank. 
  3. The wedding itself. If the wedding is a small and intimate ceremony, the couple might not expect large amounts of money from each guest. However, you might be expected to give more if it is a large and lavish wedding.

Once you have considered these factors, you can determine how much cash you want to give as your wedding gift. You can use our rule of thumb below to give an amount you are comfortable with. 

  • If you are close friends or family with the couple – gift between $100 and $500
  • If you are acquaintances with the couple – gift between $50 and $100. Those on a tight budget can give between $20 and $50.

Now that we have established what you should consider when gifting money and some guidelines, let’s dive in a little deeper!

We will look at the different people’s weddings you might attend and the average amount is given to help you see how much money you should give. 

Remember when it comes to averages, you don’t need to give the same amount. Gift the amount of money that you are comfortable with and an amount that won’t leave you financially struggling! 


Cash gifts from parents to their children for their wedding usually range from $300 to $500. The average tends to be closer to $400, which is a considerable amount of money to give. 

The amount might be more or less than these figures depending on how many children you have and your financial situation. For example, if they are your only child and you are financially stable, you might want to give them more money. 


The amount of cash grandparents give for weddings varies from family to family. Some will give a significant amount of money that helps the couple to fund their wedding or honeymoon.

On the other hand, some grandparents will offer a small amount of money but contribute in other ways, like paying for flowers or transport for the wedding. 

As grandparents, it is your choice how much you want to give to your grandchildren for their wedding. 

On average, grandparents tend to give $200 for a grandchild’s wedding. This figure includes cash gifts and any other financial contribution they have made to the wedding, like paying for flowers or toward the rehearsal dinner. 


Relatives like siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles usually give between $100 to $150. Don’t worry if you cannot afford this amount, it is more important that the couples support and celebrate your marriage than financially contribute to it.


On average, friends give around $100. The amount a friend gives tends to depend on how close they are to the couple and their financial situation. 

As a friend of the happy couple, you need to decide what you want (and can afford) to give. It is more important that your friends know you are there to celebrate their big day than for you to go without giving them money.


Finally, we have co-workers. It is always lovely to be invited to the wedding of a co-worker, but knowing how much to give can be tricky. On average, co-workers give $50 for a wedding. 

This number does range dramatically from $50 to $100 depending on your relationship with the couple and your financial situation. If you are close friends with the couple or are in a leadership position (perhaps their boss), then a larger amount is usually given. 

However, if you are not that close to the couple or earn less than your co-worker, it is more acceptable to give less money. 

Cash For Cultural Weddings 

The amount of money gifted for a wedding does also vary depending on the culture and religion of the couple getting married. In Vietnamese and Chinese cultures, it is customary to give a wedding gift and cash. 

The amount of money tends to relate to the relationship you have with the couple, with family members giving more money than friends. 

On average, these envelopes contain between $50 and $300. If you are not close to the couple, then a lower amount of $20 to $50 is more common. 

Indian weddings differ, where there will be gift tables where guests can leave checks or cash envelopes for the happy couple. Here the rule is that friends will give between $100 and $150, whereas family will give $200 or more. 

Cultural or religious traditions play a huge role in the amount of money gifted at weddings. Make sure you are aware of these customs before you attend a wedding so you can offer the correct gift

Don’t worry, we have all the information below for you to check out! 

African Traditional Weddings 

African traditional weddings are a little different to others when it comes to gift giving. Typically, at these weddings the present will be a gift that will assist them in their new life together, ranging from household items to money. 

If you are close to the couple, you might opt for a more meaningful and expensive gift or financial contribution. 

Chinese Weddings 

At Chinese weddings it is considered rude to not offer a gift, especially if you are close to the couple. The amount you choose to give will be determined by your financial status and relationship with the couple. 

Those that are close with the couple would offer a larger amount than someone who is an acquaintance. It is customary that the money is an even number, as odd numbers are considered unlucky. The money should also be in a red envelope. 

European Weddings

European weddings tend to be more relaxed than American weddings. It is not uncommon for guests to rock up late! Although gifts are appreciated, they are not expected, meaning there is no definitive answer about how much money you should give. 

Generally, the amount depends on your relationship with the couple and your budget. If you are close friends or family, then you will want to give more than if you are acquaintances. 

We recommend using $100 as a starting point when calculating how much to give. Depending on your budget, you can then increase or lower the amount.

Indian Weddings

Indian weddings are a wonderful time of celebration and festivity. Families come together and celebrate the union of the couple, usually with entertainment and a lavish display of food and drink. 

Gift giving and receiving gifts is also a big part of Indian weddings. Gifts symbolize fortune and good luck, with cash given in large sums.

The money is typically placed in an envelope and given to the couple by a relative. The money can sometimes be given directly to their parents too. 

It might seem excessively extravagant, but it is an important part of Indian culture and traditions. Make sure you are prepared for it when you attend a traditional Indian wedding! 

Jewish Weddings 

At Jewish weddings, gift-giving is preferred to cash. Gifts are seen as a personal touch and it also shows you’ve gone the extra mile to get a gift for the couple. This is hugely appreciated, especially if you are close to the couple.

If the couple has a wedding registry, we recommend checking this out to find an appropriate gift. If they don’t have a registry, Shabbat-related objects like candlesticks are always appreciated. 

You can also give money if you want, it is just not something that is customary. If you do give cash, we recommend the amount being multiples of $18. Eighteen has a special meaning in Jewish culture, meaning ‘chai,’ or, ‘life.’

The couple are sure to appreciate this extra touch and nod to their culture, especially if you are not Jewish. 

Wedding Etiquette When Gifting Money

When gifting money, there are certain etiquettes that you need to follow and be aware of. Let’s take a look at them now.  

What To Say When Mailing Gifted Money 

If you are sending money by post, make sure you include a card. You can use the card to express your well wishes and sign the card so they know it is from you.

Place the money in a separate envelope inside the card, maybe with a separate note on how you hope they will use the money. 

We have some phrases below that you can use in the card you send the happy couple. These include:

  • ‘I’m so sorry to miss your big day. I’m happy to send you this gift as a token of my love and best wishes.’ 
  • ‘Wishing you all the best on your special day. Congratulations.’
  • ‘I hope your wedding day is everything you wish for and more.’
  • ‘Best wishes to you on this wonderful journey you are starting together.’

What To Say When Gifting Money In Person

When gifting the money in person, be sure to use crisp new bills. You might want to call into your local bank or visit an ATM machine to do this. If you prefer a check, make sure it is made out to the bride and groom or the both of them. 

If you want to make the money more personal, include a letter with the money. Here you can express your best wishes for their future and it is a wonderful way to add a keepsake they can enjoy. 

If you don’t include a note, make sure the envelope is clearly labeled, or there is a card that tells the couple who the money is off. When presenting the couple with the money, you will want to say something. We have a few phrases you can use below: 

  • ‘Congratulations. Best wishes on this new chapter.’
  • ‘May your marriage be as happy and beautiful as you are.’
  • ‘Wishing you all the happiness in the world on your wedding day and beyond.’

You can also use a more personal remark if you prefer. We have a list below for you to choose from.

  • ‘I’m so happy to share this special day with you and see the beginning of your journey together.’
  • ‘Your wedding day is the beginning of a long and happy journey together.’
  • ‘I can’t think of anyone more perfect than you two. I wish you all the happiness in the world.’

Final Thoughts 

And there you have it, everything you need to know about giving cash as a wedding gift. Whether you are a friend, family member, or acquaintance, we hope you have found the answers that you need today. 

When deciding how much money to give as a wedding gift, remember to carefully consider your budget, as well as your relationship with the happy couple.

There is no need to put yourself out of money for someone that you aren’t close to (or even someone you are close to). 

Make sure you check with any traditions or cultural practices that may be at their wedding so that your gift meets the norms and doesn’t cause any offense. After all, you don’t want to ruin someone’s big day! 

No matter how much you can afford to give, the couple will appreciate you taking time out of your life to come and celebrate their marriage and the next chapter in their lives. So don’t get too fixated on the monetary value! 

Also, read the following related posts:

Frequently Asked Questions

Before you leave today, be sure to check out our brief FAQ section to get the answers to the questions you need! 

Will Some Couples Say If They Prefer Cash?

Yes! These days it is becoming more and more customary for couples to state their preferred gift method. This might be printed on their wedding invitation or FAQ sheet that can be included.

You might also find information about directions to the location or dress code. 

Couples will usually include a line about gifts not being expected, but if you want to gift anything they will either direct you to their registry or state that cash is preferred.

In the cases where cash is preferred, it is often to help cover the cost of the wedding, pay for their honeymoon, or to help them with a move into their new home. 

If there is no information about gifting preferences, you can always ask the couple directly. This is easier to do if you are close to the couple. If you feel uncomfortable asking, it’s always worth running it past a family member or friend to gauge what they would like. 

If in doubt, cash is always a good option as the couple can spend it how they see fit. 

Do You Include Money In Wedding Invitations?

Yes. you should include money in the card wishing them well. You can do this once you have received the invitation, or wait until the wedding. You could also choose gifts from their registry office or gifts you think would suit them if you prefer. 

If the couple has a preference, these will be listed on the wedding invitation, website, or any other communication about the wedding that you receive. 

How Much Do You Spend On A Wedding Present If You Can’t Attend?

There is no specific amount you need to spend on a wedding gift if you cannot attend the wedding. Make sure the amount is within your budget and is one you are comfortable spending. 

If you do need a starting point, aim for $75. If this is too much, you can lower or you can go higher if you prefer. You might want to use this to set a budget for their wedding registry or give them the value in cash. 

How To Give Money As A Gift Creatively?

If you don’t want to simply put money in an envelope, why not create a money roll? You can do this with a toilet paper roll, creating a fun and enjoyable gift that also gives the couple money. 

Put the cash in a toilet paper tube that the happy couple can unroll. Make sure you save the largest bills for the end so that they have a lovely surprise! 

Do I Give Cash Or A Check As A Wedding Gift?

You can give either! Cash tends to be easier for the couple, as they don’t need to head to the bank. However, if you don’t have cash lying around, then a check is more appropriate. The choice is yours. 

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