The most popular wedding registries are the ones that are easy to use, offer couples special perks, and allow them to choose items they both want and need. Choose one or two places from this list of great registries and you'll make gift buying easy and fun.
Four Gift Item Registries
Check out one of these great places to register for physical gifts:
All-Inclusive Online Registries
If you have diverse tastes or needs that cover numerous factions of life, consider registering online using an all-inclusive registry. These registries allow you to add items from a variety of stores online, without limiting you to the selection at one store. Two places to consider include:
- MyRegistry made Woman Getting Married's list of Best Online Wedding Registries, and for good reason. Items from any online store can be added to the registry - even items from Etsy or other small boutiques. The site boasts smartphone apps to make registering easy in person, along with personalized service online or via telephone.
- Gift Registry 360 has a great "Add From Anywhere" tool that allows users to add items to their universal registry from retailers in person or online. It also has a special "Styleboard" option so brides and grooms can check out how pieces from different places will look when put together. Guests can search for registries through the website and click on them to be taken directly to the purchasing page. Gift Registry 360 was highlighted in Huffington Post's article on Wedding Registry Alternatives.
Brides and grooms often choose big box retailers for their registries with good reason. After all, they have a variety of items at reasonable prices and are in numerous cities across the country. Add these two stores to your list of places to consider:
- Bloomingdale's has a list of nine great reasons to register with them. Just a few include having your own personal registry consultant, getting freebies from vendors when registering for certain gifts, and getting exclusive savings on purchases in different departments. Bloomingdale's received an A rating from Starlight Registry.
- Sears offers plenty of perks for couples who want to register with them. Brides and grooms who don't know where to start will benefit from their Wedding Registry Checklist which will help them realize all of their options. Real Simple's article Where to Register for Your Wedding notes that dinnerware and Craftsman brand tools are popular items to include on the registry itself.
Six Unique Registries
In today's modern world, registries aren't just for getting items like toasters and bath towels. Consider registering at these six unique places to get what you really want or need:
Hatch My House
Hatch My House lets guests contribute to a couple's home down payment or renovations. Brides and grooms set up a virtual home, with options for items both inside and out that need to be purchased or repaired. There is a 5.9% fee for the transactions; either the couple or the guest can pay this fee. Brides notes this registry lets guests offer an "investment in your future."
SoKind allows couples to create a registry for things they want that aren't brand new items for their home, although physical items can also be included. Whether it's money for music lessons, donations to a favorite charity, or even secondhand items, SoKind allows brides and grooms to choose what they want to receive. The Institute for Humane Education notes that this registry is one that lets couples and guests "honor loved ones while also honoring their values".
Hosting a wedding can be expensive and leave little left in the budget for a relaxing vacation after their event, which is why some couples may choose to set up a honeymoon registry. At Honeyfund, you can register to have a special meal at a ski resort or swim with the dolphins at your tropical destination. You can also link your traditional gift registry to the site. Transaction fees average around 1.8%. Honeyfund also made Huffington Post's list for alternative registries.
Couples who love the culinary arts will love to register at Foodie Registry. Currently it is available for four metro areas - New York City, Chicago, Denver, and San Francisco. Registrants select the restaurants they wish to receive gift certificates to and guests can buy them in any amount desired. Guests can also buy certificates to restaurants not on the registry. Even if the bride and groom aren't from these four cities, this is a viable option for them if they want to honeymoon or vacation there in the future, because certificates never expire. Foodie Registry was mentioned in The New York Times article The Moneymooners: Registering for Cash, Not Dishes, as an alternative to traditional registries.
Zankyou is a unique option for couples who want to receive cash gifts to use towards their honeymoon, house, car, or really anything. Create a website with wedding details and a page with your chosen gift items. When guests choose a gift, couples actually receive the cash value of their gift instead of the physical gift itself. While this option is great for people who don't need a lot of "stuff," there is a small fee for using the services. A 2.85% handling fee and 99 cent transaction fee are charged. The website was favorably reviewed by Style Me Pretty and made it into Mashable's Spark of Genius series about unique startup companies.
I Do Foundation
The I Do Foundation is a charitable gift registry. There is a list of recommended charities for couples that have met certain criteria, though couples can select from over 1.5 million charities worldwide. You also have the option to create charitable favors through the I Do Foundation. An 8% fee is added to any transaction guests make through the website to cover costs. It made Wedding Illustrated's list of Ways to Give Back with Your Wedding, who notes that if you create a registry with one of their partners, 3% will be given back to charity.
Wedding Registries Made Easy
Choosing the right registry is important, as the right place will ensure you end up with what you want without any hassle for yourself or your guests. Once you've registered, don't forget etiquette when it comes to letting everyone know about your registry choices.