How Much Money Should You Give For a Retirement Gift?


Someone in your social or working circle is retiring soon, and you would like to give something to celebrate their retirement.

So how much money should you give for a retirement gift? With retirement, it’s not expected to give a gift, but it is good manners. It’s best not to give money but to give a gift that matches the retiree’s hobbies, and retirement plans. On average, people spend between $10 – $100 on a retirement gift depending on the relationship they have with the retiree.

The amount of money you should spend on the retirement gift depends, on your income and on the relationship you have with the retiree. It differs per situation so let’s dive deeper so you know exactly how much money you should spend on the retirement gift. And I will share awesome retirement gift ideas in this article.

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Retirement gifts etiquette

With retirement gifts, it’s more the thought that counts. For other occasions in life, there are more (un)written rules about how much money you should spend on a gift. With weddings, birthdays and graduations, giving cash is the most appreciated. And it’s often also expected from you.

With retirement, it’s not expected of you to give a gift, unless you know the person well or or you want to celebrate this achievement with a gift.

It’s best to give a retirement gift instead of giving cash. If you’re invited to a retirement party you should bring a gift unless directed not to on the invitation. Then a retirement card with best wishes is sufficient.

The gift you give is something that matches one of the retiree’s passions, hobbies, or retirement plans. It can be a gift they need or can enjoy in retirement or a thoughtful gift to keep as a memory. For example travel gear for a retiree with travel plans, hobby gear for someone with a particular hobby, a Craft Beer Gift Box for a beer lover, a Wine Gift Box for a wine lover, a Coffee Gift Box for a coffee lover, etc are all great retirement gift ideas.

Therefore you have to know a little bit more about the retiree to know what gift is much appreciated.

If you don’t know the person, you can ask around about what their plans are and what they like. This way, you can find the best retirement gift that matches their plans.

How well do you know the retiree?

How much money you should spend on the retirement gift is depending on the relationship you have with the retiree. The closer you are, the more money you probably want to spend. To make things easier, I have listed a couple of situations below;

How much money should you spend on a retirement gift for your employee?

If one of your staff members is retiring, it is expected to give a retirement gift. It shows that you care and will show other employees the value you place for the dedication to your company. This can create extra motivation amongst your staff. So you don’t want to miss out on this opportunity.

The amount of money you should spend depends on a lot of factors like how many years he/ she worked in the company, in which job position and what your budget is for employee gifts.

For future reference, it’s best to create a worksheet for yourself with the amount of money that you spend on gifts per year the staff member has worked for you. You can make this public to your staff members so everyone knows what can be expected and you don’t create inequality among employees.

As a boss, you want to spend more than an individual would spend on a retirement gift because you have been the most beneficial of all the work the retiree has done. As the average as an individual is between $10-$100, you want to spend between $100 – $1000 on a retirement gift as a boss. And the more personalized the gift, the better it is. You want to show that you know your staff members on a more personal level.

Retirement Gift Idea For Your Employee

Giving a bouquet of flowers as a thank you is a must to give on retirement day. And you can expand it with a great gift basket.

Retirement is a life celebration that calls for champagne. And you can give your hardworking employee a beautiful Dom Perignon Champagne Gift Basket to wish him or her all the best in retirement. With the world’s best vintage Champagne.

Dom Perignon Greetings - Wine Gift Basket

How much money should you spend on a retirement gift as a co-worker?

As a co-worker, it is not expected for you to give a retirement gift. If you are a close co-worker, it’s more expected from you than if you’re not that close. Unless your invited to a retirement party, then it’s best to bring a retirement gift.

On average people spend between $10 – $100 on a retirement gift. You can give a gift personally because you have a good relationship with the retiree.

Or as a team, you can collect cash to buy a bigger and more expensive retirement gift. The contribution to the pot can between $5 – $30 or even more. It’s best not to force guidelines but give more suggested guidelines to group gifting. Don’t insist that everyone has to contribute because they maybe can’t afford or don’t want to be involved.

Retirement Gift Idea For Your Coworker

A great retirement gift for him is The BroBasket. You can create an amazing (custom) gift basket for your boss with his favorite alcohol and snacks. From Whiskey, Vodka, Tequila, Scotch, Gin, Rum to (craft) Beer, and engraved gifts. Check out all the BroBaskets and boozeless Gift Baskets.

Get men a gift they really want - Their Favorite Booze!

A Wine Gift Box from The California Wine Club is a great retirement gift for her. You can gift her a Wine Box or a monthly subscription with delicious and handcrafted award-winning wines from (small) family wineries.

How much money to spend on a retirement gift for your boss?

Most employees do group gifting when it comes to giving a retirement gift to their boss. The contribution to the pot is an average between $10 – $30. And sometimes even more. If you have a good or special relationship with your boss you can exclude yourself from the group gift and give a personal gift yourself. On average this can be between $10 – $100 depending on how much you can afford and how good your relationship is with your boss.

Check out my article with 44 Fantastic Retirement Gifts For Your Boss

How much money should you spend on a retirement gift for a friend or family member?

As a family member or friend, you have a personal relationship with the retiree. That doesn’t mean you have spent more money than any other person. It all depends on how much you want to spend and how much you can afford.

It’s often more the thought that counts than the amount of money you spend. If you’re attending a retirement party with maybe a dinner, it’s best to spend a bit more than if there’s no retirement party planned.

Because you know the retiree well you also know what his/ her retirement plans are. That means you can look for gifts that match their passions and hobbies. Any gift that is thoughtful is a great retirement gift.

Retirement Gift Idea For Your Friend/ Family Member

One of the coolest retirement gifts out there is the gift of Masterclass.

MasterClass is an online education platform with the world’s most successful and famous teachers: Gordon Ramsey, Christina Aguilera, Usher, Hans Zimmer, Stephen Curry, Carlos Santana, Jimmy Chin, Serena Williams, Dan Brown, etc. 

Masterclass offers classes (for any skill level) taught by the best in the world: from cooking, acting, writing, poker, music, sports to science, and so much more.

You can give your friend or family member the time of their life in retirement with a cool Masterclass from their idol, inspirator or favorite hobby. You can gift one single Masterclass or an All-Access Pass to all the masterclasses on the platform. Check out all the Masterclasses available here.

How much can you afford?

How much money you should spend on a retirement gift also depends on how much you can afford. If you don’t make a lot of money, don’t feel obligated to spend a lot of money on a retirement gift. Don’t underestimate the value of giving something thoughtful that shows your recognition and support. The more personal the better.

If you make more money than on average person that doesn’t always mean that you have to spend more. Maybe you feel the unwritten pressure on other occasions, but with retirement gifts, the key to the best gift is to give something thoughtful and personal. So that doesn’t always require a lot of money. But you don’t want to be cheap as well. It’s better to not give something than to give something cheap.

And giving extravagant gifts to outshine others is not a good idea as well. It’s actually doesn’t make you look good. You will send a message of showing off and you can even make the retiree feel uncomfortable. Make sure the message behind the retirement gift is personal, respectful and pure.

Recommended Articles

These articles might be helpful for you to read as well:

Related Questions

How do you celebrate someone’s retirement? One of the best ways to celebrate someone’s retirement is to plan a retirement party. Other great ways to celebrate someone’s retirement is to give a speech on the last day, hand out a special award, create a goodbye video with messages from co-workers/ friends and family. Or give out a memory like a photobook with collected photos over the years or a big banner with written messages. Do you want more inspiration? Read my other article: How Do You Celebrate Someone’s Retirement?

Kirsten Veldman

I'm Kirsten. In 2017, my boyfriend Léon, and I decided to retire from the rat race to travel the world and work and live location independently. With my articles, I want to help people enjoy and celebrate retirement in the best way possible.

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