Registering For Your Honeymoon: When China & Guest Towels Aren’t a Priority

Some brides have it all, including enough of a nest egg for life after wedding without needing help from friends and family. Plus, if you and your guy live together beforehand, you probably have all of the necessities. You can skip registering for gifts altogether, but opening check after check just isn't as fun as getting surprises. Not to mention that all that wedding money will probably get used for necessitates instead of fun, frivolous plans. What’s a girl to do? Forgo that fine china platter from Tiffany & Co., go without a new stainless steel cooking set and register for the honeymoon from your dreams instead. 

Well, It Looks Like a Gift Registry…

That’s because it is! It works in much the same way. As a couple, you’ll sign up, plug in your honeymoon plans and then register for whatever your little hearts desire. Activities, room upgrades, day tours, massages, bottles of wine during dinner… the possibilities are just about endless. When you’re finished, you can let your friends and family know that the registry is posted and then they can start their shopping. 

I’ll Take One of Those, Two of Those…

Let’s hash out the far-reaching details of everything there is to register for when it comes to your honeymoon:

  • Room upgrades. It is, after all, your honeymoon. Let yourself be treated to the honeymoon suite.
  • Daytime activities, like golfing, surfing or guided tours. Your guests can also help take a load off your back by renting you golf clubs instead of making you lug yours along for the trip.
  • Evenings out, whether it’s a generic “A Night On the Town” gift or a round of drinks at the area’s most popular lounge.
  • A rental car. Big spenders will get you a deluxe rental so you can cruise around town in an Aston Martin or a Maserati.
  • Airfare and first class upgrades.
  • A gift certificate to a local fine art store so the couple can bring home a piece of art as a honeymoon keepsake.
  • Matching embroidered robes to live the luxe life while hanging in at the hotel.
  • Spa treatments, like massages or body wraps.
  • “Breakfast in Bed,” served by the resort’s room service straight to your door.
  • Fresh flowers or baskets with fruit or wine waiting at the room for your arrival.
  • Gratuity! This is one of the most-appreciated gifts. Going on a honeymoon that’s been paid for is great, but not having to tip waiters and cab drivers on top of that is even better.

Gift Registries vs. Honeymoon Registries

There are a few distinct differences between the two types of registries. The most glaring difference is that you have to pay a fee to use a honeymoon registry. It makes sense if you think about it. When you register at an actual store, it’s complimentary because that store’s getting paid when your guests purchase gifts. Honeymoon registry websites, on the other hand, aren’t selling their own products. Plus, they have to juggle a bunch of resorts, tour companies and restaurants to offer couples a ton of gift options. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel, though. You can opt to have the fee removed from the gifts, which means you don’t really have to pay for it yourself. For example, when your sister orders that snorkeling excursion, it’ll be a buck or two less because part of her payment is going toward the site’s fee. 

One of the nicer distinctions is that you can slice a honeymoon gift into parts. If you register for a $1,000 crystal vase from Bloomingdale’s, you can’t exactly ask multiple guests to split the bill. With a honeymoon registry, though, you can. For example, let’s say you want to book the sprawling penthouse suite, which is a $2,000 upgrade. You can register for this in 10 parts. On your registry, it’ll show up as the individual price for the upgrade, $200, and ten requests for it.

Cashing In

You’ve registered. Your guests have bought you everything from a V.I.P. poolside cabana to first class airfare tickets. How do you collect? There are a few options. First, your guests can either have the registry company alert you to your gift or they can have an actual card sent so they have something physical to give you on your wedding day. Second, you can choose to either hold onto the gift yourself or have it sent straight to your travel company, airline or hotel. Some companies will simply deposit the money into your PayPal or bank account. The best part about that is you get to keep it all. If the honeymoon suite upgrade is unexpectedly $200 less than what you were gifted for it, you keep the surplus. If you want to skip the upgrade altogether, you still get the monetary gift.

You Still (Kinda) Need a “Real” Gift Registry

A friend of mine who registered for her honeymoon said that some of her guests still wanted to buy her a tangible gift. Personally, I can’t really see why. I have an anti-girl gene that prevents me from enjoying shopping, especially at large, stuffy department stores. Picking out a honeymoon activity or upgrading my bestie to first class airfare all from the comfort of my MacBook sounds ideal to me. The proof is in the bride who’s been through it, though, and my friend said that she even got a few calls asking for a gift registry. So, she caved and registered at an actual store, albeit for a small amount of items. 

Honeymoon Destination: Undecided

Didn’t cement the plans for your honeymoon because you’ve been too busy with dress fittings and cake tastings? You can register for generic items, like water sports or spa trips, and choose a price. Then, as you start to plan your honeymoon more and more, you can update details and make gifts more streamlined with your plans.