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The Ultimate Guide to Making a Destination Wedding Registry

Ollie Rozdarz, Co-Founder of Hitchd
Ollie Rozdarz from Hitchd
Feb 04, 20208 min read

Destination weddings have grown in popularity over the years, and it's no wonder why. Destination weddings take so much pressure off couples, and they give couples the freedom to plan an elegant wedding that celebrates their love and focuses on what's really important to the couple. With smaller guest lists, couples spend more time with loved ones on their big day, and the ones who fly out to destination weddings are often the ones who mean the most to the couple.

There is one hitch, however, with a destination wedding: Is it appropriate to make a destination wedding registry? Traditionally, wedding guests bring gifts because the couple is paying for a big party, but what do you do when guests are expected to travel, which can be expensive, and others decide to stay home?

Deciding on whether you should make a destination registry or not can be tricky to navigate, but Hitchd has all the answers for you. Here's what to consider when making a destination honeymoon registry and how to do it right.

Why you should make a destination wedding registry

Destination weddings have evolved over the years, and nowadays, they're fairly common and sometimes even preferable. A destination wedding can be like an invitation to a vacation for some people, and it can be the necessary kick they need to finally take the vacation. Some people like to arrive early or stay after the wedding and have their own vacations. After all, they're already spending the money, so why not make it last through more than just the ceremony and reception?

For some couples, it can be difficult to navigate wedding culture and etiquette when it comes to destination wedding registries, but these registries aren't as taboo as they might have been 10 years ago. Now they're expected at all weddings, even destination weddings. Here's why.

People expect to give gifts

No matter the type of wedding, guests want to show the happy couple how much they are loved and appreciated. They want to help their loved ones start their new lives together off on the right foot — no matter what type of wedding the couple throws.

It's important to remember that just because you're doing a destination wedding doesn't mean you are no longer eligible for gifts. You're still getting married and embarking on a new life together with your partner.

Whether you're getting married in your hometown or another country, guests still expect to be able to bring or give a gift. Having a destination wedding registry ready to go saves your guests the trouble of asking you what it is you would like.

Create your dream destination honeymoon registry. Start your registry

Your guests want to support you

Whether you do a traditional destination wedding registry or a honeymoon fund (we'll get to that later), your guests want to show their love and support for you and your family. Providing a gift and making the trek out to your wedding are two great ways of doing so.

As any wedding guest knows, setting up a home can be expensive. Providing a gift, even if it's a small kitchen appliance or the funds for dinner for two while you're on your honeymoon, goes a long way to show the happy couple that they have the support of their family members and friends.

How destination wedding registries help guests who can't come

The downside of having a destination wedding is that not everyone can make it to the big day. Some people have demanding jobs. Others have kids and pets that need attention. Not everyone will be able to pull themselves away from everyday life for a vacation and a wedding.

But that shouldn't stop you from making a destination honeymoon registry.

Help people feel included in the wedding

When couples set a destination wedding, it can leave some would-be guests feeling excluded from the ceremony. It's not the couple's intention, but it does happen.

A destination wedding registry lets guests that can't make the wedding feel included in the big day. In some ways, it's almost like an extension of the wedding itself, helping guests who couldn't make it express their happiness for you and your partner in their own way.

Create your dream destination honeymoon registry. Start your registry

Allows guest to contribute to your big day

Your wedding guests want to help make your day as special as possible. If they can't be there in person, sending a gift is a great way to contribute to the happy couple.

Traditional wedding registry vs honeymoon fund: Which is better for destination weddings?

By now, you should feel comfortable with the idea of setting up a destination wedding registry. Guests coming to your wedding expect to bring gifts anyway, and those who cannot make it will still want to make a contribution.

But which registry is better for a destination wedding? Should you make a traditional one at a store or build a honeymoon fund.

There are pros and cons to both, but overall, the honeymoon fund can be a better fit for destination weddings. For one thing, guests won't have to worry about bringing a physical gift or even a card with them on the trip.

Honeymoon funds also allow for more price point options. As mentioned, destination weddings can get expensive for guests, and while they want to show love and support to the couple, their budgets may be maxed out for big gifts like vacuums or new comforter sets. On traditional wedding registries, there are fewer options for gifts under $50 that the couple really needs.

On the other hand, honeymoon funds provide many different options for price points below $100 or $50. You can break down big expenses, such as a spa day or day trip, into smaller contributions so guests don't have to pay as much, and you can use ask for multiple “taxi fares” or “rounds of drinks” at even $20 to $30 to provide guests with easy gifts that won't break their banks.

Tips for making a destination wedding registry

Ready to get started on making your destination wedding registry? Whether you're setting up a traditional wedding registry at a store or a honeymoon fund on Hitchd, these tips will help you set up a registry that is both tasteful and meaningful to both you and your guests.

Include a wide variety of price points

Even if you weren't doing a destination wedding, having a wide variety of price points matters. You have people from all backgrounds and stages of life who want to celebrate your destination wedding, but not everyone can afford to come to your wedding and buy an expensive gift.

With a destination honeymoon registry, break up larger gifts into smaller amounts, and include plenty of $25, $30, $40 and $50 gifts. This will allow anyone to contribute to your destination honeymoon registry whether they're coming to your wedding or not. Those who are coming to your destination wedding won't feel expected to also purchase an expensive gift on top of airfare and hotel expenses for the wedding itself.

Create your dream destination honeymoon registry. Start your registry

Detail what each gift means to you and your partner

Your destination wedding registry should be personalized if you're creating a honeymoon fund. When choosing your day trips, spa treatments, hotels and restaurants, tell your guests why you and your partner are so excited to go to this place. Do you plan to get a relaxing couples massage? Does this restaurant's menu reflect the local cuisine that you can't wait to try?

Building a honeymoon registry allows you and your partner the opportunity to sit down and plan out your honeymoon, so use this chance to find places you really want to go and restaurants you want to eat at. When you share exactly why you and your partner chose one particular day trip or restaurant, they'll feel more involved in the gift and experience.

Include links to restaurants you plan to eat at and activities you plan to do

If you want to help destination wedding guests live vicariously through your honeymoon, include links and photos to all the places you plan to go on your honeymoon registry. This means links to restaurants, hotels, local hot spots and other day trips and activities you plan to do.

The key here is to show your wedding guests how you plan to use their gifts and to give them a better idea of what their gift entails. When you provide a link to the hotel you're staying at or the spa you plan to visit, it helps make the experience more real for the guest. They can see how their gift will be spent and get excited to send you and your partner off on a fabulous excursion.

Times have changed, and now it's completely appropriate to register for a destination wedding. Your friends and family members want to celebrate this special occasion with you, and even if they cannot be with you in person, many will still want to show their love and support.

With a destination wedding registry, you can help guests be part of the fun from far away. Hitchd has helped thousands of destination wedding couples build honeymoon funds that fit their lifestyles. You have plenty of options to put together a thoughtful, tasteful wedding registry that makes guests feel included and appreciated.

Create your dream destination honeymoon registry. Start your registry

Looking for the #1 way to fund your honeymoon?

Hitchd is a new type of honeymoon registry that helps fund your adventure of a lifetime. Think of us as your very own wishing well, Kickstarter, and travel planner, all rolled into one beautiful experience.