What is an okay amount to give a 13 year old for a bar mitzvah?
I recently went to a friends brothers bar mitzvah held at a restaurant with a dj. The gift I gave was $25, but searching more on bar mitzvahs, the amount most people give is $50. Was $25 too little to give for a bar mitzvah for someone you don’t know well?
- Most Bar Mitzvah money is given in denominations of 18. So $18, or $36, or $54, or $72 are common. This has to do with the symbolism of certain numbers in the Jewish faith. But if you're not Jewish no one is going to look askance at you for giving an amount that doesn't conform to 'chai'.40
- You give what you want to give, and can afford. I'm sure other people gave modest gifts too.
The main thing is, you participated in the celebration. It's a big deal in a Jewish teenager's life.40
- it sounds okay to me00
- It was fine.00
- I'm sure if you were to ask twenty different families you'd get forty different answers. Obviously it has to depend on a number of factors, and there CAN'T be an amount that's always "okay" in every household all over the country.00
- It was more than enough to give.10
- Any gift is up to the giver.
You took the trouble to attend and share with them a special day, and you gave them a nice gift. It was fine.10
- What the gift giver can reasonably afford, but also based on your closeness to the boy and/or his family. Your gift was fine. Foofa's answer was very informative re the symbolism of numbers.00
- You were low.
1) friends brother - the less you know a person, the more you give. Your gift is also a thank you for inviting you.
2) restaurant with a dj - You try to estimate a cost per person that they are spending. The more extravagant the celebration, the more you kick in.
3) It isn't only to the 13 year old, it is to the parents as well in one point of view.
4) Move the number up or down by what you can afford
5) Despite non-Jewish opinion and views of Jews, Jewish people are not cheap at all. Jewish people want value in a purchase or investment, but are very charitable and generous.
6) There is no exact number, despite multiples of Chai as 18 meaning life is traditional. The party was for the 13 year old, your attendance is appreciated, and you aren't measured by a low gift because it is assumed that is what you can afford and we do not look down upon less affluent people. High gifts are respected and appreciated, low gifts are understood without issue. In today's costs, $50 was about right, but judge by restaurant and dj.
As to any fix, you can speak quietly to your friend with apologies that you did not understand if you want to add, an do it with a gift card. You are under no obligation at all.
As an adult attending my nephew's Bar Mitzvah at the Copa Cabana night club in Manhattan with full band and MC, custom activities and decoration, fine food and alcoholic beverages, I came up with $300. That is a world over yours, but just adjust to the extravagance. Maybe one day you'll attend a special celebration as night to remember.
PS add- If adding with an extra gift of a thing or gift card do not say the amount of money. Say "I didn't realize the importance of the occassion." Do not give cash as an adder. It should be a physical gift or a gift card. As a physical gift, you can add "I thought he might like this also when I saw it in the store". We don't like to talk about cash amounts in gifts.00
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