What Is the Average Amount of Money for a Graduation Gift?

by Maya Black ; Updated September 29, 2017

The appropriate amount of money to give a graduate depends on the level of degree they have completed.

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Unlike annual gift-giving holidays that come with built-in gift ideas such as Christmas, Father's Day and Mother's Day, graduation marks the end of a long, sometimes challenging road in the completion of a course of study. Graduates appreciate your generosity when giving a gift, reports Stacy Johnson in a 2014 article published on MSN. Graduates, she says, prefer the gift of cash to spend on what they really want and need.

How Much to Give?

At the time of publication, just over $160 is an appropriate gift for high school graduates, writes Johnson. It's appropriate to give graduates completing a bachelor's degree around $460 dollars as a gift, while just over $770 is appropriate for graduation from graduate school and above. Give these amounts in cash, or, alternatively, in stocks, savings bonds, investment-grade precious metal coins or a certificate of deposit. High school graduates who are going on to college or college grads who plan to start grad school in the next semester always need the most money, so a gift certificate to the college bookstore is most likely as welcome a gift as cash.

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About the Author

Maya Black has been covering business, food, travel, cultural topics and decorating since 1992. She has bachelor's degree in art and a master's degree in cultural studies from University of Texas, a culinary arts certificate and a real estate license. Her articles appear in magazines such as Virginia Living and Albemarle.