One of my clients is thinking about setting up a honeymoon registry in addition to the standard department store registry options. I got busy researching the ins and outs of such a set-up and gathered a lot of important information.
The main thing to remember when establishing a honeymoon registry is to read the fine print and do your research before choosing a company. Nearly all major honeymoon registry companies charge some sort of fee, ranging from a flat fee of $150 to 8-10% of every contribution gift.
Honeymoon registry specialists, such as The Big Day, HoneyLuna, Distinctive Honeymoons, Traveler’s Joy and The Honeymoon now compete with programs from lodging chains, like the Marriott, Starwood and Sandals. The one advantage with the former group is that couples can choose specific aspects of their trip, like snorkeling, massages, a private beach, for gift-givers to choose from. The downside to these options is that oftentimes the fine print does not offer refunds to the couple if they decide to sleep through the snorkeling trip. The lodging chains tend to me more flexible with the credit, but gift-givers are usually limited to contributing to meals, tours, and accommodations.
Another big difference between a traditional registry and a honeymoon registry is that ultimately it is the couple’s responsibility to foot the bill. In short, the couple pays for their trip in advance and hopes that guests chip in with gifts along the way. Still, when it comes to splurges like massages, the couple does not usually have to pay in advance; they can see if people purchase some big trip splurges for them before committing to pricier vacation experiences. The honeymoon agency usually mails the couple a check of gifts received before the wedding. Chain companies typically issue a gift card or company credit.
Also, remember to watch expiration dates. Starwood’s Honey Money expires after only two years, while the Marriott’s never expires.
Etiquette-wise, it is perfectly fine to register for a honeymoon. Just make sure you have your family and friends spread the word for you. The major downside are the service fees, of course. The best site I found in my opinion is called Honeymoon Wishes, a company based out of CA: http://ytb.honeymoonwishes.com/ What’s nice with this program is that it is totally free to set-up and the couple can choose to have the 7% automatically deducted from a $50 gift, rather than having the gift-giver automatically have to add-on 7% to their intended gift.
Planning a honeymoon takes time and a lot of research. Better Together Events can help! For an affordable fee, we can do all the leg-work for you, so you can just sit back and dream about your ultimate honeymoon experience, whatever it might be. For me, famous New Orleans beignets, hot strong coffee, and my new husband was my idea of a perfect morning!