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Average Wedding Gift Spending in U.S. Up 16% in Two Years
May 8, 2014
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Spending on wedding gifts continues to rise—as does everything else about attending (or having) a wedding.

More than 67 million Americans are planning on attending one or more weddings in 2014 and they'll pay more to do it, according to the latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker.

The report shows that the average cost for a guest to attend a wedding is now $592. That's up 10% from 2013, but it's up 75% from 2012. More than half of that cost pays for travel and lodging: $308. Another $164 goes for special attire and accessories.

Spending on wedding gifts is also increasing, the report showed. Again, the big increase was from 2012 to 2013, when the average cost increased from $94 to $108. The increase from 2013 to 2014 was just $1, to $109, but that still leaves the average cost in 2014 16% higher than two years ago.

When the wedding is for a coworker, guests spend and average of $74 on the gift. When it’s a close friend, guests spend an average of $116. When the bride or groom is a close family member, the average gift cost for 2014 goes to $200, up 20% from 2012.

The report showed that 33% of wedding gift buyers will purchase the gifts from the couple’s registry. Another 33% give money and 13% give a gift card. Cash is what 55% of couples prefer, up from 52% last year.

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