Registering for your wedding can be a daunting task. Actually, in my opinion registering for anything is a royal pain in the tush! It's uber time consuming, can be very confusing and with our busy lives sometimes it's hard to find the time. Luckily there are now some fantastic options for online wedding registries. My favorites are Amazon, Zola, Thankful and Blueprint.
Benefits of using an online wedding registry:
1.) You can pick out all of your gifts in the comfort of your own home (and pajamas) anytime of day or night.
2.) You aren't limited to only selecting items that are in stock at local stores. Amazon, Zola, Thankful and Blueprint all source for you and allow you to select items from third party vendors. This opens up a plethora of possibilities! Especially for Alaskan couples as we sometimes feel so limited.
3.) You can "fund" activities or your honeymoon. If you ask me, this is the biggest perk of registering online! Some couples opt to only ask for money towards their honeymoon and the activities when they get there so that they don't have to worry about that additional financial stress after their wedding is over. I look at this as your guests are helping you make memories instead of buying you toaster or yet another Ginsu knife.
4.) Items ship directly to you. This benefit is two fold. Not only is it awesome that guests don't have to bring gifts to the wedding and then you have to remember to select someone for the ever so fun job of lugging all of the gifts home, but it's also easy for everyone involved to click "purchase" and then it's done. No one has to wrap, tie bows, etc. etc. I'm all for anything that is convenient and saves time.
5.) It's easy to pick wedding gifts that have a wide array of pricing. Not everyone coming to your wedding has $500 to spend on Egyptian Cotton Sheets. You can select some low cost practical items along with the higher end and pricier gifts.
6.) They have really really awesome stuff! Zola and Blueprint source for you. They have people behind a desk somewhere seeking out the trendiest, coolest gifts on the market. You don't have to spend hours looking on your own. Just log in to your registry and let the fun begin!
7.) You can create a universal registry though most of these sites. This means you can add products from other stores like Pottery Barn or Macy's for example. Do be careful to research this as sometimes the site will redirect your guests to the product's home site so they'll need to have your correct shipping information and remember to indicate that they did purchase the gift on your registry so other guests don't duplicate it.
Details to be aware of:
1.) Not everyone is tech savvy. Some of the older guests may still opt to bring you a gift or a card so be sure you have a small space set up for this at the reception. I always recommend an area for cards next to the gift book just in case.
2.) If you're leaving for your honeymoon immediately after the wedding, make sure you either have the gifts held at the post office or sent to a mail cache. You can opt to have someone "house sitting" and checking up on your front stoop if that's easier. This will alleviate the possibility of theft or having twenty packages sit on your front door step for a week before you get home!
3.) Not everyone pays attention to registries. Even though you take the time to create a wish list some guests might still just bring whatever they feel like. Just roll with it and hope that if you get four crock pots they come with a gift receipt!
4.) Some of these sites do take a percentage of your "cash" or activity gifts. They deposit it directly into your account minus this fee. For example, Zola takes a 2.7% credit processing fee from any of the cash gifts. Just be aware of these so that you won't be unpleasantly surprised.