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Zoom wedding gift?

 
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amother




OP
 

Post  Mon, May 25 2020, 10:56 pm
Are there any rules? In general, I thought that your gift is supposed to approximately cover the cost of your seat at the wedding. Now obviously there is no cost, although I think they may have lost money on a deposit for the hall.

Not that we have extra money to spare, but I feel sad for them. Same question for a bar mitvah we were invited to pre-corona that ended up not happening.

Thoughts?
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ra_mom




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, May 25 2020, 11:45 pm
Is there something meaningful that you can get them? Something you know they'd enjoy?
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amother




Indigo
 

Post  Mon, May 25 2020, 11:51 pm
I’ve never heard of the “rule” that you should get a gift that’s worth the cost of your wedding seat (nor do I know how anyone would calculate that.) However I think that if you feel close enough to the baalei Simcha/ chosson or kallah that had it been an in person wedding, you would have liked to attend and you’re in a position to afford any type of gift, go for it! It doesn’t have to be expensive, it can be something useful (if it’s something from their registry even better!) I’m sure the chosson/kallah will be grateful no matter what it’s worth and I don’t think that the fact that it was a Zoom wedding should have any bearing on that. It’s not like they sell their wedding gifts to pay for the wedding...
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amother




Red
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 12:01 am
I plan on giving morei
I feel so bad for the kallah
Plus I didn’t have babysitting expenses.
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amother




Khaki
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 12:09 am
I have never held by giving the cost of your seat. That would mean that a wealth person, who has a trust from their parents and who's parents can afford an over the top wedding should be gifted more than the poor Yatom who really needs the gift to set up her home.
I know my examples were extreme, but the idea is illustrated.
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zaq




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:01 am
A wedding gift is not payment for the cost of your meal. For that, you go to a restaurant or buy takeout. If the families make an affair beyond their means and depend on wedding gifts to cover the cost, that's basically stealing from the young couple. Wedding gifts are for the couple, not their parents, to wish them happy and help them set up their household, regardless of whether or not you attend a fancy affair. While a gift isn't required if you don't attend, no one will object if you do so.
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mommy3b2c




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:12 am
I give gifts to people because I want to give them a gift. Not based on the cost of my seat.
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watergirl




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:21 am
Give what you would have normally given. These poor zoom wedding couples! Are people skipping the good gifts for them?
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amother




Red
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:36 am
watergirl wrote:
Give what you would have normally given. These poor zoom wedding couples! Are people skipping the good gifts for them?


They aren’t sending out invitations or return cards. Just because of that they are getting less.
And many ppl give a gift at the wedding and if there is no wedding...
Zoom weddings are getting almost no gifts.
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raizel20




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:52 am
Why would a Zoom wedding gift be different from a regular wedding gift? The chossons and kallahs of these weddings need cheering up - they are missing out on lifelong dreams of having their friends and family celebrate in person. Their households need the same goods and services as any chosson and kallah. Maybe ask if they are registered at any stores. Show them that you are trying to do the mitzva of m'samameiach chosson v'kallah
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watergirl




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 8:59 am
amother [ Red ] wrote:
They aren’t sending out invitations or return cards. Just because of that they are getting less.
And many ppl give a gift at the wedding and if there is no wedding...
Zoom weddings are getting almost no gifts.

And this is wrong.
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amother




Violet
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 9:07 am
My cousin got married right after purim so obviously we had been invited to the wedding regular before the big celebration got cancelled. I gave a little more than I had given his siblings cuz 1) I didnt have to pay $100 for babysitter to go to the wedding and 2) I felt horrible for what they went through. The stress was unimaginable. Sure my money wont solve that but if it makes then a little happier I'm happy to do it
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amother




Burgundy
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 9:52 am
I think that it depends on the connection with the baal simchas. My kids didn't receive gifts from the majority of people who declined to attend the weddings but occasionally there were people who had something conflicting but who otherwise would have come and they gave so that is how we conducted ourselves.
I am on a community WhatsApp group and someone posted a Zoom wedding invitation for the group, which is a very nice thing to do. I don't know this person so I don't feel compelled to send a gift but if I felt a connection than I would.
Many people get numerous invitations and can't afford to attend or give gifts to all of them, unless it's maybe a small token gift.
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amother




Lawngreen
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 9:58 am
A wedding gift is for the children, not the parents.
What is the source for it covering the seat? I appreciate how communities come up with ways to support each other; I know of a community that does showers that cover just about everything.
But I didn't even look at checks that came in return envelopes for my kids' chasunas. It just went straight to the kids.
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Raisin




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 10:51 am
I would give the same or more. This is one tangible way you can be mesameach a chassan and Kallah in this time.

Plus the parents may have already paid for a big wedding and were not able to be refunded.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 11:43 am
OP here. Thanks for the replies. I didn't mean an exact calculation, but a rough estimate. Even though the wedding gift is for the couple and presumably it was the parents who paid for the wedding. I do usually feel obligated to give a more generous gift when the wedding is held in a more expensive venue, or it seems like they went all out. We do it happily, but it's still a financial strain.

Dh feels that if they didn't spend money on a wedding, which we didn't attend in any case, we don't need to send a gift. But I was thinking as Watergirl said, feeling bad for the couple who probably won't get too many gifts. So asking if people are giving the same gifts as they would had they attended a regular wedding?

I should probably add that we are closer to the ages of the parents of the couple, as that will probably affect the responses here.
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amother




Indigo
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 11:49 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
OP here. Thanks for the replies. I didn't mean an exact calculation, but a rough estimate. Even though the wedding gift is for the couple and presumably it was the parents who paid for the wedding. I do usually feel obligated to give a more generous gift when the wedding is held in a more expensive venue, or it seems like they went all out. We do it happily, but it's still a financial strain.

Dh feels that if they didn't spend money on a wedding, which we didn't attend in any case, we don't need to send a gift. But I was thinking as Watergirl said, feeling bad for the couple who probably won't get too many gifts. So asking if people are giving the same gifts as they would had they attended a regular wedding?

I should probably add that we are closer to the ages of the parents of the couple, as that will probably affect the responses here.


But I still don’t get the connection between how much money the parents spent on the wedding vs how much you spend on the gift? Why is there a connection? Also I can tell you that I’m currently planning an outdoor covid wedding where only parents and siblings are allowed and it still costs thousands of dollars...
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amother




Taupe
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 11:56 am
zaq wrote:
A wedding gift is not payment for the cost of your meal. For that, you go to a restaurant or buy takeout. If the families make an affair beyond their means and depend on wedding gifts to cover the cost, that's basically stealing from the young couple. Wedding gifts are for the couple, not their parents, to wish them happy and help them set up their household, regardless of whether or not you attend a fancy affair. While a gift isn't required if you don't attend, no one will object if you do so.


Its funny you say that because by sefardim (especially bucharians) they give a check that covers the cost of their seat.
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WhatFor




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 26 2020, 12:09 pm
OP - I first heard that calculation from a non Jewish coworker, but I've definitely heard of it since. It also reminds me of what I believe is in the first chapter of Upton Sinclair's The Jungle when a Lithuanian immigrant couple got married and there was money collected at the event I believe used to pay for the affair? If my memory is correct, then this custom may be more than a century old...

In any case, I agree with the other posters - if you'd generally give this couple a gift, give one now. I assume even people using the "seat" calculation are doing that more to ensure their gift is appropriate and not a tit-for-tat. ("This meat is dry, Chanie do you have a pen? I'm deducting 40 dollars from this check.") Given the current financial insecurity, newlyweds are probably getting less than they ordinarily would, even from people who want to give.
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