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7 data-driven tips to increase the average contribution to your honeymoon registry

Ollie, Co-Founder of Hitchd
Ollie from Hitchd
Nov 05, 20208 min read

With all of the planning and patience that goes into planning a wedding, many couples feeling that creating their honeymoon registry should be the easiest part of the process. But when they sit down in front of their computers to put a honeymoon registry together, their minds go blank.

What should they ask for? How many gifts should be on the list? Should couples ask for just donations to a single fund or divide that fund into individual gifts? What's the best way to write out your gifts in a respectful way? How can couples gently encourage wedding guests to contribute?

At Hitchd, we receive many of these questions from couples, so we asked ourselves: What does the data tell us?

We searched through all of our data to find the top-performing registries with the highest average contribution. Then we compared them with other registries to identify what factors contributed to such high numbers of contributions.

Here's what we found:

  • The average contribution amount to a honeymoon registry increases by 38.5% for registries that have a varied number of gifts and experiences compared to registries that had just a single honeymoon fund gift.
  • The average contribution size comes to USD $130 for registries with six or more gifts compared to USD $93 with less than six gifts.
  • Successful registries were launched between four to six months before the big day.
  • Most wedding registries received the most contributions in the three days before the wedding.

When couples have data on their side, they'll be able to build better honeymoon registries that wow and delight their guests. Based on our data, we've outlined seven easy tips for creating honeymoon registries that will help you increase the average contribution.

Include more than six gifts on your honeymoon registry

Some registries include just one gift — a honeymoon fund or a cash fund to help the couple buy a home after the wedding — and ask wedding guests to contribute what they'd like. While this is the easier option for couples putting their honeymoon registry together, it's not very compelling for wedding guests.

Guests like to feel appreciated for their gifts, and they want to know more about what they're giving. Even if the honeymoon fund description tells guests about where the couple wants to go and what they plan to do, it's often not enough for guests.

Hitchd's data shows that registries with six gifts or more receive more contributions than those with fewer gifts, so if you want guests to contribute to your honeymoon fund, break it down into smaller gifts, such as:

  • Airfare or other travel expenses
  • Hotel, resort or Airbnb costs
  • Dinners and drinks
  • Activities such as tours, plays and excursions
  • Luggage and carry-on bags.

All of these options can be broken down into $25, $50 and $100 gifts, so one guest does not have to cover your entire plane ticket — just a part of it. For couples worried about having too many gifts, it's best to pull out the top six or eight honeymoon experiences and then create one honeymoon fund catch-all gift, one in which guests can give whatever amount they feel comfortable with.

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Ask for physical gifts as well as experiences

Not all Hitchd couples ask for honeymoon experiences on their wedding registries. In fact, the most successful registries have a good mix of honeymoon activities and expenses as well as physical gifts.

"The average contribution amount to a honeymoon registry increases by 38.5% for registries that have a varied number of gifts and experiences compared to registries that had just a single honeymoon fund gift."

This may sound like the couples may be asking for too much, but in all honesty, not every wedding guest is going to want to give a honeymoon experience. Some would much rather give a gift such as artwork for the couple's home or a high-quality coffee machine that will help the couple wake up every morning.

The best honeymoon registries on Hitchd mix both experience and physical gifts so all guests feel seen and included.

Offer personal details about physical and cash gifts

The honeymoon registries with the highest average contribution spare no details when it comes to describing their perfect gifts. The couples behind these registries write personal descriptions about physical and experience gifts so guests know exactly what they're helping the couple buy.

These descriptions do not have to be novel-length, but most of them include:

  • Three to five sentences
  • Personal details about why the couple is asking for this gift
  • How the gift will be used or experienced.

A couple asking for a new coffee machine might tell guests a bit about their morning routines — who makes the coffee, who's a morning person, how the couple likes their coffee — and why this specific coffee machine was chosen. Maybe there's a special feature that the couple likes or maybe they need to replace an old machine.

For experiences, couples should write out a description of the experience and why they're so excited to try it. Airfare, for example, can describe when the couple will take off and land, what airport they're flying out of and what snacks or books they plan to take for the long flight. It's not that wedding guests won't know how airfare works, but writing out a description gives guests an idea of how the couple will experience their flight.

Diversify your price points

The drawback from doing a single honeymoon fund on a registry is that guests don't really know how much to contribute. They might have an idea of what they want to give, but for those who have never contributed to a honeymoon fund, they may not understand how their gift will be used or what the couple plans to do on their honeymoon.

Data from Hitchd shows that honeymoon registries with gifts at varying price points see higher average contributions because guests know what is expected of them and they have plenty of options.

Your guests will include grandparents who will probably give a little bit more as well as friends who may be finishing school, paying for a wedding of their own or even trying to start a family. Having gifts at different price points lets guests choose how much they want to spend and feel appreciated whether they're chipping just $50 for a nice dinner or $200 for a spa package.

Write a kind introduction

The honeymoon registry introduction may be one of the most overlooked parts of the registry, and yet for guests, it can be the most important part. All wedding guests want to feel welcomed and appreciated, no matter what their gift contribution may be. The introduction sets the right tone for the honeymoon registry, and our data shows that it helps increase the average contribution.

"The average contribution size comes to USD $130 for registries with six or more gifts compared to USD $93 with less than six gifts."

But the first paragraph of a honeymoon registry can be intimidating. Couples often agonize over getting those first few sentences just right.

Luckily, Hitchd helps couples get started with the in-app registry introduction generator, which will give couples a personal message welcoming guests to the honeymoon registry, assure them that having them at the wedding is a gift in and of itself and explain what the honeymoon registry will be used to fund.

Of course, couples are always welcome to write their own introductions and personalize them. For all introductions, Hitchd recommends:

  • A friendly greeting
  • A thank you for coming to the wedding/honeymoon fund
  • A sentence or two about where the honeymoon will be spent
  • A quick explanation about why the couple is not asking for physical gifts, if none make the registry
  • A reminder that all gifts are optional and that being a guest is a gift itself.

With an introduction that touches on all of these key points, couples will be covered.

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Launch your registry four to six months before your wedding

In our data search, we found that launching the honeymoon registry earlier, say a year out from the wedding, did not help couples receive more contributions. This might be for several different reasons:

  1. Guests may not want to contribute until they know more about your wedding and what, if any, travel costs they may face.
  2. Some may not want to give a gift so far in advance.
  3. Others may not be able to budget in a gift when more immediate expenses may be facing them.

When planning a wedding, couples face plenty of moving parts, and it may seem smart to get the honeymoon registry out of the way and done with so they can focus on the venue or decorations. But Hitchd data shows that it doesn't really help to launch the honeymoon registry early.

Instead, couples should plan to launch the honeymoon registry between four and six months before the wedding. This gives guests plenty of time to look over the registry at their own pace and decide what they'd like to give.

The great thing about a Hitchd registry is that it's almost never too late to launch a honeymoon registry, which can be a lifesaver for busy couples. They can launch their honeymoon registry two months or even one month before their weddings and still receive contributions. For those couples that may be unsure of what they want for their honeymoon or home, a honeymoon registry doesn't need anything to be shipped, so guests know the happy couple will get their gift right away.

Be patient

Some couples become anxious when they post their honeymoon registry and then receive few if any contributions soon after, but data from Hitchd shows that this is completely normal, even for registries that received the highest average contribution.

Most couples receive the majority of their contributions in two key timeframes before their weddings: one to two months and within the three days before the wedding.

The one-to-two-month timeframe likely comes from the couple's wedding shower, which is usually held about a month before the wedding. Anyone who didn't attend the shower or bring a gift will then contribute in the days leading up to the big day.

What couples do need to keep in mind though is how they're getting their honeymoon registry to their guests. The link to the registry should always go on the invitations and even the save-the-dates, if possible. Some couples even send the links directly to their parents and wedding party members so they can help spread the word if anyone asks them for help. Most family members will go to the parents of the couple with honeymoon registry questions, and friends in the wedding party can share the link with anyone in the friend group that needs it.

For couples feeling anxious when the gift contributions do not come in as quickly as hoped, remember to have patients. There could be any number of things that guests may be thinking about before the wedding, so give them time, and as the final countdown to the big day begins, those gifts will start to roll in.

"Successful registries were launched between four to six months before the big day."

Creating a honeymoon registry may seem like an easy task — and compared with choosing a wedding gown or a venue, it might be — but couples shouldn't overlook or neglect their honeymoon registries. What the data from Hitchd really tells us is that couples who put some good thought and effort into their honeymoon registries see the biggest average contribution.

While it may not seem like there are enough hours in the day, especially as the wedding day comes closer, couples should spend serious time putting together their honeymoon registries. Hitchd recommends:

  • Blocking out a weekend to get it done. The registry does not have to be done in one sitting, and more gifts can be added once the registry goes live. Some couples add six gifts to start and then add more once it gets closer to the honeymoon.
  • Working together. Couples that share the task of building the registry will have an equal investment in it.
  • Splitting up the blurbs. Planning on including 10 gifts? Each person can then write five blurbs each.
  • Including links and photos to gifts when necessary. Couples asking for a specific coffee machine or honeymoon spa package, for example, should include a link to the store website or the spa itself. This helps guests better visualize how their gift will be spent.

With a little planning and some helpful data tips from Hitchd, couples will be able to build a honeymoon registry that expresses their personalities and encourages a high average contribution. Build the honeymoon registry with your guests in mind and they'll feel understood and appreciated for any gift they choose to give.

Start your honeymoon registry today. Get started

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