Don't RSVP "no" just because your bank account is running low.
Yes, times are tough but let us not forget that love carries on. Case in point, that growing stack of wedding invitations you have thumb tacked to the calendar. If it seems as though everyone you know is suddenly getting married this summer, that may very well be the case. Wedding season is officially in full swing and just because you're counting every penny, don't discount the fact that you're still required to send a gift for every invitation that comes your way.
While Brides.com suggests that the average amount of money to spend on a wedding gift is $100, the rules of etiquette may be broken on account of a bad economy. If you don't have quite as much cash to give this year, you can still say "I do" when it comes to being a good wedding guest. Read: How To Be A Stress-Free Wedding Guest
Give your friends a gift that doesn't have an obvious monetary value. In other words, resist the urge to write them a check in the amount of $94.25 even if it shows that you're down to your last dollar. Instead, seek out registry items that pack a good punch. A miniature crystal vase doesn't carry as much weight as say, an oversized overnight bag. Luggage is a great gift for guests on a budget and if you can find it on sale, even better. Read: Wedding Gift Alternatives
Shower your friends with compliments and you can save even more money. For example, have a sentimental photo of the two of them blown up and slipped into a sterling silver frame. Your pals will be so smitten with the idea of themselves enlarged, they'll forget your gift is extra small.
Re-gifting can get tricky when it comes to weddings. Unless your friends are named Thomas and Anne-Marie too, you probably shouldn't re-gift that monogrammed set of hand towels collecting dust in the linen cabinet. On the other hand, if they're hard core environmentalists, they may be cool with a recycled Crock-Pot®.
Weddings are expensive even if you're not the one walking down the aisle. On top of presents, there are travels costs to consider. Try shacking up with a few pals or car pooling to out of town events. You can save money and snag a designated driver in the process. Book your accommodations as soon as possible to make sure you get the group rate. And hey, if a few hotel soaps happen to make their way into the bride and groom's going away bag with a note that says, "I'll get you next time," so be it.