When you’re getting excited about your honeymoon and you see a flashy honeymoon registry website, it’s tempting to sign up right away and start planning all the fun stuff you’ll do! Fortunately, I was able to resist temptation long enough to ponder some fishy issues with these websites. What’s interesting is that because the industry is so new, I haven’t been able to find a single news article or anything that examines these issues. All the articles I could find simply mention the honeymoon registry as a fun and exciting new way to register. Here’s my list of potential problems and scams to look out for.
•You are still required to make your own reservations. These may require an up-front fee which you have to pay before anyone gives you the gift. In fact, you may have to pay for your entire honeymoon yourself before you receive any of the gift money, since the check is usually cut immediately before or just after the wedding.
•The management of the funds is not regulated. What happens if the company embezzles your money or goes bankrupt before you receive your gifts?
•The websites often don’t have contact information such as a real address of phone number. What happens if you have a problem with the registry?
•The fees for the registries are often very high for the level of service they offer.
•Many of the registry sites advertise “free” or “unique” services, then charge hidden fees for common services. Typically, the only free sites are the ones that require you to book their packages through their own agents. Then you may be paying a premium for the whole travel package.
•It is very difficult to find user reviews for registry websites. Some companies post positive reviews on their own website, but there’s no guarantee these are real.
•The honeymoon registry industry is new and unregulated. There are no industry standards or registry-specific consumer protection laws.