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Spend Carefully

How not to break the bank as a wedding guest

Financial Wellbeing Coach

2023-02-10 00:00

Estimated reading time
5 min

In this article

  • How much can you actually afford (without breaking the bank)?
  • Keep in mind the theme
  • Your presence is the present

Whoever said wedding presents must be expensive clearly never heard the last line of that ol’ saying: something cheap.

Do you remember the joy of opening a birthday card as a kid? Or reading a heartfelt message from a loved one – and perhaps even saving it in a box for years to come? Sometimes the simplest gifts can mean the most, and when it comes to wedding gifts, it’s no different.

If you’re looking to save a few pennies for the upcoming wedding season, why not put your creativity to the test by thinking a little outside the box. Maybe it’s a tear-jerking letter, or something handcrafted or repurposed. While there’s no straight answer to wedding gifting, here are some general guidelines you can follow when deciding on a present or donation for the loved-up couple...

1. How much can you actually afford (without breaking the bank)?

    At the end of the day, a wedding gift is supposed to be about giving the couple something they will cherish or appreciate. Give what you can – whether that’s a salad dish, or a card with the most heartful of messages. If you need a hand budgeting for any upcoming weddings, we can help with that too – you can find ANZ’s budgeting tools on our Financial Wellbeing hub.

2. Keep in mind the theme

    Is it a black-tie event at the best venue in town? Or a garden ceremony at the local park? If you’re lucky enough to score an invite, tailoring your gift to the vibe or the newlyweds themselves can be a sweet way to mark the moment. Whether that’s cash for the soirée, or a new plant for their sprawling garden, you’re best placed to know what the newlyweds will appreciate – you're in their community after all.

3. Your presence is the present

    If the event is overseas or you have to travel to get to the wedding, think about the bigger picture when budgeting. How much are you spending to get there (flights, accommodation, meals) and what's left in your budget for a present? Many couples won’t expect a big gift if they’re having a destination wedding. It’s true – your presence really says it all! If you’re currently saving for a destination wedding – check out our holiday saving resources here.

If we’re being honest, it’s not the gift the newlyweds will remember – it’s how much you danced, laughed and enjoyed yourselves. So spend within your means, and put some heart into whatever you’re giving, big or small – it will be appreciated on a day that’s all about love.

How not to break the bank as a wedding guest
Financial Wellbeing Coach

Wedding gifts: how not to break the bank

Wedding season is upon us, so put on your dancing shoes and get creative with gift giving.

Plan your spend



The information set out above is general in nature and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the information, you should consider whether the information is appropriate for you having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. By providing this information ANZ does not intend to provide any financial advice or other advice or recommendations. You should seek independent financial, legal, tax and other relevant advice having regard to your particular circumstances.