• Posts Tagged ‘registry’

    Got A Wedding Registry? Get $50

    by  • August 28, 2007 • Tagged:   • Comments

    Cuisinart is currently offering a $50 wedding registry promotion. If you register for a Cuisinart stand mixer at select retailers, you can earn a $25 rebate. If someone actually purchases it for you, you can get another $25. More information on the Cuisinart registry web page.

    Financially Savvy Wedding Gifts

    by  • July 30, 2007 • Tagged: ,  • Comments

    Do you know a bride and groom who are financially savvy (or who could use some help in this area)? If so, then the Chicago Tribune has some great wedding gift suggestions. Instead of a stock pot, how about blue chip stocks for the happy couple? Or how about giving financial advice along with your marriage advice? A financial book instead of a cookbook? The article even recommends a favorite book of ours, Smart Couples Finish Rich by David Bach. I think Him and I would be surprised and pleased to receive any of these gifts at our upcoming wedding. What do you think? Would you ever give this kind of wedding gift?

    Honeymoon Registry Conclusion

    by  • February 18, 2006 • Tagged: , ,  • Comments

    After all the analysis we’ve done, we’ve concluded that while we want to have a honeymoon registry, we don’t want to use the services of a professional honeymoon registry service. He’s quite good at making websites, so our new plan is to attempt to create our own honeymoon registry website in conjunction with our wedding website. He likes a challenge and said, “Ooh! A project!” when I first suggested the idea. Aside from avoiding all the bizarre fees and potential issues, we’re thinking that by doing our own coding we’ll have a really personalized site. Instead of a bland, generic photo we can post photos of our actual itinerary. Hopefully this will be a fun gift idea for our guests and a simple way for us to have the honeymoon we dream of. Now we’ve just got to pick a destination!

    How Honeymoon Registries Get Rich Off of Your Money

    by  • February 18, 2006 • Tagged: , ,  • Comments

    While I’ve been looking into Honeymoon Registries as a potential consumer of their services, I’ve also been trying to figure out how they make money to stay in business. It appears to me to be quite a profitable business scheme.

    First, they charge an initial fee to set up a registry. Then, as each registry gift is purchased, they skim a high commission off the top. What’s more, they hold your gifts until your wedding, so they have the use of your funds until then. They can invest the cash and keep the interest that accrues. Pretty nice deal for them! They can also offer service add-ons, like announcement postcards, for a small fee. In essence, you’re paying for their advertising when you give out these cards to your guests. As a final kick in the butt, they typically release your gift check so late that you will want to pay extra for their special “rush” services.

    Based on a sample website which shall remain anonymous, here’s my estimate of the total revenue they could earn from a couple registering for a $3,000 honeymoon.

    Setup fee: $150
    Commission: 15% of $3,000 = $450
    Interest: 6% of $3,000 = $180
    100 Announcement Cards: 100 cards @ 50c = $50
    Rush service fee: $25
    Total Revenue: $855

    That’s $855 that could have been spent on the honeymoon itself. Ouch.

    Problems with Honeymoon Registries

    by  • February 18, 2006 • Tagged: , ,  • Comments

    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.

    How the Honeymoon Registry Works

    by  • February 17, 2006 • Tagged: , ,  • Comments

    There are lots of variations on how these work, but most follow the same pattern.

    1. The couple creates an account on a honeymoon registry website. Setup fees range from free to $150 or more.

    2. The couple arranges their honeymoon travel through their own or one of the website’s partner travel agents. The couple and the travel agent work together to make reservations, book flights, etc. The couple pays up front for any reservation or down payment charges.

    3. The couple logs onto the registry website and creates their honeymoon registry. Some websites will post a photo of the couple and a paragraph about their honeymoon plans. The registry includes a list of your honeymoon plans and how much each activity costs (based on the couple’s own estimate). This cost can be broken down into smaller gifts. For example, a $1,000 airline ticket can count as two $500 gifts. The couple lists how many of each they need, and the registry will show a current count of how many still need to be purchased. Some registries show a small generic color photo next to each activity, while others have only text descriptions.

    4. The guests are notified about the honeymoon registry. Some registries will provide complimentary postcards to direct guests to the registry.

    5. Guests log on and choose a travel gift to purchase. They do not actually purchase the travel, but instead make a cash gift to the couple. When they check out, a service fee ranging from 5-20% is added to their purchase total to cover the cost of the registry website. Typically the gift is paid through PayPal or a similar service. The gift giver may be able to print out a certificate that states that a gift has been purchased. (This can be given to the couple but has no actual value.) When the couple receives the cash gift, they may spend it however they choose.

    6. What happens to the cash gift between the purchase of the gift and the wedding is not always clear. A minority of registry websites state that they hold the cash in an insured bank account, and that the cash is never used to pay for the company’s expenses. The majority of registry websites do not state where the money goes in the interim. This means that they may use the couple’s cash however they please and the gift is not insured.

    7. At a designated time, typically a week of the wedding date, the registry website company totals the value of the couple’s gifts and makes the funds available to the couple in the form of a check, direct deposit or Paypal. The company may charge a fee for a paper check or for rush processing of the gift. The couple may have to wait until after your honeymoon to receive the funds.

    8. The honeymoon registry may offer post-honeymoon services, such as compiling a list of gifts given, or posting photos of the honeymoon.

    9. The registry is closed between 1 week before the wedding to 90 days after the wedding. When the registry is closed, a final payment is made to the couple.

    New Theme: the Honeymoon Registry

    by  • February 17, 2006 • Tagged: , ,  • Comments

    We have recently begun planning our wedding registry, and we were planning on doing both a traditional gift registry as well as one of those newfangled honeymoon registries. These allow couples to register for all the aspects of their honeymoon, from airline tickets to souvenirs. Initially it sounded fantastic! I began by doing some lunchtime surfing of online companies that offer honeymoon registries. They’re more complicated than I first assumed, so I decided to make an Excel spreadsheet to help me compare services and fees. After a while, a pattern of shady businesses with hidden fees and crappy services began to emerge. I searched for user reviews of these websites and came up empty.
    So I’m starting a new theme on honeymoon registries, where I’ll post about some of the things I’ve learned about them.


    by  • February 14, 2006 • Tagged:   • Comments

    Thank you to all the bloggers who commented on our China post. We realized that we’d neglected to do two things: 1) Describe our style to our readers and 2) Work as a team to create a registry that reflects our values. Those comments inspired us to have a three-hour registry discussion last night.

    To start with, let’s just say there is very little we actually need. I’m very domestic and have acquired more household good than most married couples have after 10 years, which is why I have so much credit card debt! We own all the typical Bed Bath and Beyond items, plus a yogurt maker, a complete cheese carving set with olive wood handles, casual dinnerware that we love, and professional knives in a chopping block. The only things our home needs are large pieces of furniture like a china cabinet.

    Our styles are very different. He’s casual, I’m formal. But together we enjoy both casual and formal entertaining. We expect to entertain in both styles several times a year, so there’s no risk of our china going unused!

    We approached the registry the same way we approached our financial planning: by using the value-based plan. We value memories of our wedding day and life together, our friends and family, and the excitement of travel. So we decided that our registry should provide us with life-long mementos of our wedding and honeymoon, enable us to entertain and celebrate with friends, and help us create memories. So here’s our first pass at things we want to register for:

    A group gift, possibly our honeymoon or wedding photo package (I’ve seen some registry websites that break these items down into small gifts)
    A big parent/grandparent gift, maybe a large piece of furniture.
    Formal entertaining must-haves, such as formal china, silver and crystal.
    Fun, low-budget gifts like wine for our anniversary and frames for wedding photos.

    Some comments suggested we request cash to help pay down our debt. We’re not really comfortable asking for cash outright, although we’re sure to get some cash gifts anyway. We’re going to continue to pay down our debt ourselves, but we also want to have wedding gifts as keepsakes.

    Tonight went to look at china. It was fun and we have a good idea of what we like. We saw one pattern that was almost $7,000 per 5-piece place setting! We won’t be getting that one, but we are considering a $199 look-alike pattern. I think our registry will reflect our values and give us memories to last a lifetime.


    by  • February 12, 2006 • Tagged: ,  • Comments

    Today my mom called to say she saw some fine china on sale and she asked us to begin looking at patterns for our registry. So we went online to www.theknot.com and looked at their massive china selection. We noticed that some of the patterns cost several thousands of dollars per piece, so we won’t be registering for those! But I did read a wedding registry tip recently and I think it’s a good idea. If there is an expensive pattern you really love but don’t want to price your registry out of your guests’ range, register for just two place settings of the expensive set, and register for a complete set of something more affordable. That way you’ll have a super-special set for intimate dinners, like anniversaries, and also a nice set for general entertaining. We might do this. We’re going to go looking at china in person later this week.