Some guidelines on when to shell out the big—and not so big—bucks.
Credit: Jose Villa

Getting in on a group gift is a fun way to give a couple a pricey present without having to pay for it all yourself. But how much should each person contribute? There are no established amounts for group giving but there are a few ways to arrive at a workable number.

See what other people are doing.

There is some consensus that a minimum of $50 to $100 per guest is about right for a person to spend on a non-group wedding gift, with the higher amount being more common in big cities. You could use these numbers as a gauge when figuring out the per-person contributions for your group.

Pay the same as everybody else.

It's fair and sensible for each person to contribute the same amount, which is the assumption when giving as a group. But, of course, there are exceptions like with cousins where the younger ones put in less than the older ones who presumably have better-paying jobs.

Base it on how close your relationship is to the couple.

The people who come together as a group have something in common like they all work together or all went to summer camp together. If they are a tight-knit group, they may want to each chip in $150 to $200.

Go with your budget.

If a group is made up of recent college graduates, they'll probably have less to spend than three former roommates a decade out of school. Someone in the group should look at the couple's registry and make several suggestions at different price points. If you feel comfortable buying into the gift where the contribution is $75 each, say so. No one wants to look stingy but they also don't want to put next month's rent in jeopardy either.


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