Honeymoon Registries: the Complete Guide
— By Raashka Mannie
14 December 2021
Planning your honeymoon can mean a trip around the world or a staycation you’ll never forget. It also means funding it in the best way possible.
For that, we have the modern and marvellous invention of honeymoon registries. Unlike wedding registries, honeymoon registries differ in their purpose by being less about traditional gift-giving. Honeymoon registries give your loved ones the chance to contribute to the beginning of your lifelong journey. It could be a surfing trip around Hawaii, a backpacking trek around Europe or anything in between - whatever your choice, honeymoon registries make it all possible.
Funding honeymoons has dramatically risen in popularity in recent years. It helps to sidestep the awkwardness of receiving gifts you’re not sure what to do with or like, as well as directly pointing to a goal that you and your partner have in mind. The meaningful nature of honeymoon registries has made them a preferred option for many of today's couples, emphasising the connection between them and their special guests.
So what are the best honeymoon registries to carry all of this out, you may wonder? We’ve got you covered there. Prioritising design, ease of use, overall fees and customizability, we’ve put together a list of the best honeymoon registries for you to choose between, citing all the details that matter most. You’ll be sailing off into the sunset in no time.
Image by Hitchd
Honeymooners, take note! Hitchd is giving couples the chance to fund their dream honeymoon with just a few clicks. The site offers a markedly more personal and beautiful experience than traditional registries by focusing on making it easy for both guests and newlyweds alike.
How does Hitchd deliver what others don’t? By challenging the traditional wedding registry mould of upselling couples and guests with third-party offers that they don’t want and charging a one-time fee instead. Only paying once is the cornerstone of this honeymoon registry, which is a pretty sweet deal. It ends up being more affordable than all the honeymoon registries that defer to the percentage-based pricing model.
An amalgamation of everything you could ask for and more, Hitchd blends gratitude, congratulations and gift-giving into one neat package. You curate the honeymoon registry you want, with flexible design and endless freedom.
The gist of it:
- They feature versatile payment options, including credit card, PayPal, Venmo, Cash App, direct deposits or any custom instructions for payment.
- Hitchd is incredibly mobile device-friendly, with a seamless and easy-to-use interface that makes it easy to use on any platform.
- Their one-off payment means that you gain full access to your honeymoon registry planning and more in one go.
- Designed to perfection, Hitchd is streamlined and contemporary, with functionality that allows couples to personalise their pages to their hearts’ content and do so with ease.
At Hitchd, they fund memories, not things.
2/ Thankful Registry
Image by Thankful Registry
Thankful Registry is a honeymoon registry that wants you to feel like it's the real deal behind the screen. Alongside traditional gifts and charitable donations, Thankful Registry also offers customisable funds allocated towards any big day coming up after your wedding, from honeymoons to parties. They’re big on giving back to the community and being a force for good in the world through gratitude.
Condensed into a single list, your guests can choose what they want to give to – and so can you! With their handy extension, you can browse stores from all over the world and shop in any currency. Don’t worry because your guests won’t be locked into buying from a particular store if they happen to come across a lower price. Thankful Registry gives them oodles of wiggle room.
The gist of it:
- Their "Add to Thankful" browser tool makes shopping online for your registry a cinch, allowing you to chop and change at will.
- Your registry will last forever if you choose, standing as a testament to your love and a fond memory of everyone who has given.
- Thankful Registry charge guests 2.9% + $0.30 per contribution. Couples must pay a $30 fee to use the registry. Couples should be mindful of the cost of buying images, as they are omitted.
Although it’s a honeymoon registry that dips into other aspects, Thankful Registry is still a solid option for sharing the love.
Image by Zola
This one’s been around for a while. Zola is a honeymoon registry that is now one of the longest-standing of its kind. As an “all-in-one” solution, they’re suited to couples that are looking to receive physical gifts, which are purchased by guests through their extensive list of third-party retailers.
Zola’s biggest selling point is that they make it easy to mix and match. You can contribute gifts traditionally, give money, fund honeymoons or do a bit of everything. It’s definitely one of those honeymoon registries that you check out because pretty much every listicle will recommend it due to its extensive history – but it’s still worth having a look.
The gist of it:
- They’re mobile device-friendly, with a straightforward design that makes it easy as pie for everyone to use, but their actual website can seem a little too cluttered.
- The registry options are very customisable, offering couples the opportunity to use their own branded registry or a themed registry to suit your Zola wedding website.
- There are no hidden fees for cash registries (although it does charge 2.5% with the option for couples or guests to absorb the fee).
The granddaddy of honeymoon registries, Zola, is an old hat when it comes to curating gifts you’ll actually want to keep.
Image by Honeyfund
It’s in the name: Honeyfund. This honeymoon registry burst onto the scene in 2006, made expressly for contributing to honeymoons, down payments, renovations and more. Unlike traditional crowdfunding sites, you can offer guests the option of giving cash or gift cards, which avoids processing fees when donating offline. That said, guests can also process the transaction through Honeyfund using WePay (2.8% + $0.30) or PayPal (2.8% + $0.30/transaction).
Honeyfund embraces funding the dreams of couples, but this is not just about honeymoons. Modelled after crowdfunding websites, it’s designed for couples who are looking to start new projects, buy their dream home or more.
The gist of it:
- They have a live chat, which helps couples and guests get the help they need as soon as they need it.
- The overall design of Honeyfund is a bit outdated, with low-resolution images and a chunky look that suggests it hasn’t been updated in a decade or so. This isn’t the greatest foot to get off on when choosing a honeymoon registry.
- They’re upfront about their fees, but there are fees. Honeyfund charge between 2.8% - 3.95% + $0.30 per contribution, plus an additional 1% 'cross-border' fee, depending on country. Couples must pay an additional $39.99 for non-basic registry themes. Cash, cheque, and custom payments are free.
Honeyfund is all about making your dreams come true, no matter what they may be.
5/ Traveler's Joy
Image by Traveler's Joy
This year, Traveler's Joy will mark its 10th anniversary. It all started as a honeymoon registry and has since grown into one of the most popular gift registries with over half a million users. The site features a clear interface that allows you to give traditional gifts and non-wedding related ones for special occasions such as birthdays or anniversaries, making it perfect if someone doesn't want anything specific from your registry but still wants some thoughtful options nonetheless.
Traveler’s Joy allows you to draw inspiration from couples’ registries, which can help model your own honeymoon registry if you’re still dawdling. All gift redemptions in the U.S. are free. Contributors can give a gift with cash or check for free. They can also use a credit card but will be charged a customary card processing fee.
The gist of it:
- They have a very straightforward website design, making it very simple for your guests to follow, but they do ask for descriptions of every gift you request or face a wall of blank space.
- They’re mobile device friendly, which is a huge plus, but they also ask their guests to fill out chunks of information when contributing, which ends up feeling like a hindrance.
- Traveler's Joy charge 5.9% + $0.99 per contribution. Even if the couple absorbs the fee, guests are still charged $0.99 per contribution. There are no hidden fees for cash registries.
Purpose-built for honeymoon registries, Traveler's Joy has made its mark – but it does favour guests in the U.S.
Image by Wanderable
You’ll follow the yellow brick road with Wanderable, taking what Zola does and channelling it into a honeymoon registry without the frills. You’re led through the process of picking a place and then choosing one of Wanderable’s collections or start adding from the list of experiences. This honeymoon registry focuses on creating an attainable and real experience for you, exclusive to each location, which is quite exciting as you watch it unfold.
Guests can select from a list of highly-rated merchants on Yelp or TripAdvisor, known as their Experience Provider Network. If you choose to book your activity with their suggested merchant, you won’t need to pay any fees. Big on looking accessible, Wanderable pushes for a visually captivating honeymoon registry, with storytelling areas, an itemised wish list and plenty of space for photographs.
The gist of it:
- The design hasn’t changed much over the years for the mobile app or the website, which means its functionality is middling at best – but it does do the job.
- Wanderable allows you to receive your gifts as you wish, whether it be through gift cards (incurring no fees), a check, or direct deposit (2.5% + $0.99 per contribution)
- Their “choose your adventure” format is unique and fun for couples that haven’t settled on a location for their honeymoon yet.
You’re sure to find a lot of couples’ stories on Wanderable, sharing their adventures and excitement, which will make your upcoming honeymoon even more thrilling.
Image by Kouki Photography
Some useful asides:
- Remember to have a backup plan for planning your honeymoon. It’s not realistic to expect guests to cover 100% of your vacation, so budget around what you can afford and when.
- Service fees suck. Don’t ask guests to absorb the fees for you. Do it yourself because they’re already contributing to your big day, and that’s plenty. Hitchd has the lowest processing fee here, dipping down as low as 1.4% depending on the currency/country. If you don’t want to do it yourself, choose to deduct the fee from the gift amount you receive.
- If guests don’t feel that contributing to a honeymoon registry is “personal” enough, make it personal. Share your dream as a couple, send notes of gratitude, spread the love – it’s a more modern form of gift-giving, and some people are still adjusting.
- Trust us: being mobile device-friendly matters. You’re going to want to be able to send thank-yous, check your fund and more with just your phone. Please factor it in as you make your decision, no matter how much you adore your laptop.