What is the average cost of an engagement ring traditionally in the UK?
So why should you find out what the average price of an engagement is? Well, this useful benchmark allows buyers to compare true value between popular jewellery retailers. You will learn from our research that a well-known brand name does not necessarily mean excellent value.
When a buyer starts to research engagement rings, there are several topics that demand attention. Typical cost, popular designs, diamond grading and understanding precious metals. The average price of an engagement ring remains a significant factor for most buyers.
Goldsmiths, Beaverbrooks and H Samuel vs Serendipity Diamonds
Many buyers automatically steer towards well-known, popular high-street jewellers for their engagement ring. More savvy buyers appreciate the difference in profit margins compared to a smaller independent engagement ring specialist like Serendipity. The average price of an engagement ring can go much further depending on where you shop.
What does the average person spend on their engagement ring?
Spend too much and it might be overkill. Spend too little and we might be considered cheap. We are influenced by consumer habits, trends and traditions. For this reason, knowing the average price of an engagement ring helps us to gauge how our own budget compares.
Spending 1 – 3 months Salary on an engagement ring – what should you spend?
Tradition has suggested men spend between 1-3 months salary on an engagement ring. Around 66% of men buying engagement rings spend below a month’s salary on their engagement ring purchase. For this article, we have decided to focus on a spend of one month’s take-home salary based on the average salary within the UK.
What is the average salary in the UK?
The average salary within the UK stands at £26,500 in 2018 based on updated statistics.
This equates to around £1775 in take-home pay each month.
Owing to personal and family expenditure, most people commit to specific spending patterns. As a result, finance for engagement rings has soared in popularity as couples look towards easier payment options like interest-free credit when buying an engagement ring.
The pitfalls of high street pricing for engagement rings
The phrase ‘you get what you pay for’ does not always relate to engagement rings. The savvy shopper will evaluate the true value of their purchase. This will include :
The item – what they actually receive for their spend. Diamond size, quality, standard of certification for the diamond etc.
Weight and build quality. Many rings are sold with hollowed-out shoulders. They look substantial but carry little weight – mass produced overseas with high margins added by chain stores. Turn the ring upside down and look at the underside of the shoulders. Ask for specific information – diamond weight, diamond colour, diamond clarity, certification, cut grade….and so on.
Reassurances – Lifetime warranty? Returns policy? Aftersales care?
We took 5 jewellery stores, with websites, and compared a classic round brilliant cut solitaire ring. This is what we found basing our research on a sale of £1750.00
1. Serendipity Diamonds – Offering the Best Value
At Serendipity Diamonds, we create your engagement ring—built entirely from the ground, up. We take your chosen specifications, and provide reliable certification and work to a small, reduced margin resulting in excellent value for money.
What engagement ring can you buy for £1750 at Serendipity Diamonds?
18ct White Gold. 0.40 carat GIA certified diamond G colour SI1 clarity.
Incredibly good value. A round brilliant diamond solitaire weighing 0.40cts. fully certified at G colour SI1 clarity. This includes the most reputable GIA (Gemological Institute of America) certificate, with a guaranteed minimum of a very good cut grade. Set into a solid 18ct White Gold ring mount – with 60 days returns, a free resize, incredible packaging and the ring is personally built to your specifications.
Other plus points include 6 months 0% interest-free credit available subject to conditions and a safe, easy online method of purchase is available. When it comes to purchasing an engagement ring, buyers are not looking for the cheapest ring, but a way to find the very best value for their purchase.
Why 5 stars? – For the complete package. Guidance, support, item specifications, packaging and add-ons make this the best value.
Next on our list. The UK’s large High Street chain Goldsmiths. They are one of the biggest jewellery names on the High Street. But what did we find?
What does £1750 get you at Goldsmiths?
0.25cts single diamond, set in 18ct white gold. No specifications provided.
3 stars have now become 2 stars by rating – but why? – Interestingly the diamond size available in this budget is now far lower than when we originally wrote this article 2 years ago.
3. H. Samuel
What does £1750 get you for an engagement ring at H Samuel?
9ct White Gold. 0.50 carat J colour P3 clarity.
Why 2 stars? – Rather incredibly, H Samuel offers a slightly tinted diamond at the lowest possible diamond clarity grade (I3) which offers little true value for money in our opinion.
Next we looked at Beaverbrooks, another of the popular High Street jewellers.
What does £1750 get you for an engagement ring at Beaverbrooks?
0.35cts total diamond weight including shoulder diamonds, G colour SI1 clarity set in 18ct white gold.
For this budget, we didn’t find a single solitaire diamond ring. At a respecatable quality of G colour SI1 clarity, the overall carat weight came out to 0.35 carats for a design with diamond set shoulders.
Why 3 stars? – Beaverbrooks have now leapt forward above H Samuel offering greater value for money in our opinion.
5. Ernest Jones
To complement the other brands noted above, Ernest Jones produced a fair selection in this price range.
What does £1750 get you for an engagement ring at Ernest Jones?
For £1750.00 you can get a 0.50-carat diamond (no quality given) set into 9-carat gold.
Why only 2 stars? – Very little information. Despite the 0.50 carat size, which is respectable, there is no specified quality and the precious metal is only 9-carat gold.
In conclusion – observations and comments
High street jewellers, despite being well known, don’t always offer the best value. Established, popular jewellers such as Beaverbrooks, H Samuel, Ernest Jones and Goldsmiths rely on brand recognition but gain sales despite poorer value. With the rise of smaller independent engagement ring specialists, the average price of an engagement ring will go much further. As a result, a high difference in value exists between online, small showrooms and the high street.
A note on engagement ring calculators
We strongly advise against the use of engagement ring calculators. Many online calculators manipulate confidential, personal information with the intention of increasing what buyers spend on their ring. A budget should be considered based on personal circumstances and not what an app or website suggests.
Why don’t some jewellery shops specify diamond quality?
One of our key observations is a lack of specifications. While jewellers are keen to add descriptions, they leave out key specifications. More specifically, they leave out information about the quality of the diamond. This prevents online buyers from making direct comparisons with ease.
Gallery of engagement ring commissions
The following gallery shows some of our previous work, all photographs taken over the years at Serendipity Diamonds. We offer many specifications for each style. This allows buyers to work with their own budget with many fitting into the average price of an engagement ring cost.
What do you think you should spend on an engagement ring?
If you have a comment, why not tell us your thoughts on what you feel you should spend on an engagement ring.
This article was first published in 2013 to help buyers get better value for money when purchasing an engagement ring. The article has been updated regularly each year to give updated information based on current engagement ring prices.