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Whether you already live together and have all the household appliances you need to start your life as newlyweds, prefer to forego traditional registry items, or want a mix of both money and tangible gifts, a honeymoon fund is a practical option. Here’s what to keep in mind when crossing “creating your honeymoon registry” off your wedding planning to-do list.
On your online honeymoon registry, include:
The place(s) you're traveling to
The month of the trip
Any activities or excursions you're planning to do
The reason you picked the location(s)
It’s never proper etiquette to include registry information on a wedding invitation or save the date. That being said, most guests do want to know where you’re registered/how to give a wedding gift for the big day. So, include a link to your honeymoon fund on your wedding website so guests can easily find it.
Loved ones will want to start contributing once you get engaged, so set up a honeymoon fund or registry ASAP. In addition to wedding presents, people (especially gift givers!) like to give gifts to celebrate your engagement and wedding shower—so having a registry set up makes it easy for them to get gift ideas find a gift you actually want. While you don’t need to have your honeymoon fund completed hours after the proposal, get started sooner rather than later. That way, you won’t end up with four toasters—instead of the plane tickets that you really wanted.
While plenty of guests will happily contribute to your honeymoon fund, some will prefer to get you tangible gifts instead. So, add a few items in case someone would rather wrap up a present instead of donate to your trip. This is especially important for wedding showers, since a main part of the festivities usually involves watching the bride-to-be open gifts. Luckily, Zola makes it easy to register for both a honeymoon fund as well as gifts, all in the same place. Even if you’d prefer a cash gift, add gifts that guests can purchase (20 or so items is a good target).
What’s great about honeymoon funds is that you’re not forced to spend the money on anything in particular. While guests donate to different aspects of your trip (such as airfare, lodging, dining, and activities), they’re not actually purchasing those items.
Instead, the money can be withdrawn by the couple to be used for their honeymoon. This way, if you discover that the hotel you were going to stay at is closed or the museum you wanted to visit is too crowded, you won't lose out on any funds. When you write them a thank you note, just make sure to let them know what you used the cash fund for instead!
Even though we hope your dream honeymoon goes according to plan, life happens. Perhaps you opted to change destinations, had to reschedule your trip, or decided to use the money for something else, like a home down payment. Whatever the reason, if the original trip is no longer happening, you won’t lose the money you were gifted.
The first step in creating your honeymoon fund is deciding where you’d like to go. Not only will this determine what sort of activities and items you request, but it will help your guests feel involved. With so many amazing places to see, it can be hard choosing where to go to celebrate your marriage. So, sit down as a couple and turn the decision into a fun date night! Make a list of places that you both want to go, and after selecting a date that works, narrow down your options.
Once you've picked a dream honeymoon destination, take some time to map out your trip itinerary. You’ll need to decide how long you want to travel for, where you want to stay, and what you want to do. In order to do that, you’ll want to create a budget.
Once you have a budget, it’ll be easier to figure out what hotels you’d like to stay in and how many lavish dinners you can afford. Be sure to budget for things like pet sitters, travel gear, and potential fees, such as passport renewals, checked bags, or transportation from the airport.
Now, it's time to decide what you want to do while you're away! Since guests will be donating to specific activities (like going to a museum or taking a cooking class), you’ll want to get an idea of the activities available and how much these experiences cost. While you don’t need an exact number, a ballpark will help ensure that you budget properly.
Instead of just asking for a large, lump sum of money, we recommend splitting funds up into smaller, more personalized gifts. Guests will love contributing to specific honeymoon experiences, such as a wine tasting in Italy or a couples massage in Cabo.
While you might prefer a cash registry contribution, some guests would rather give you something tangible. Even if you hint that you want donations to your honeymoon fund, there will be a few people who head to the store to get something you can unwrap. To avoid being gifted unwanted items, register for a few gifts in addition to your honeymoon fund. Think about things you might use on your trip, such as travel pillows, luggage, plug converters, or even gift cards.
Chances are that there are a few items you’ll need to purchase before jetting off. Register for them, and give guests the chance to purchase something tangible—while still supporting your honeymoon goals. At Zola, you can register for both a honeymoon fund and actual gifts in one convenient location.
What makes a honeymoon fund so simple and flexible is that your guests aren’t actually purchasing the items, but rather giving you money to use toward your honeymoon. Whenever you decide, you can transfer the funds to your bank account. While the first transfer usually takes up to 10 business days, following transfers shouldn’t take more than two to four.
Creating a honeymoon fund is easy and cost-effective. Since all credit card companies charge a transaction fee to transfer money online, you can expect whatever company you utilize to charge a service fee. At 2.4 percent, Zola’s is officially the lowest, and we never take anything extra (or make money off your funds)—it’s all yours to keep! You can either have guests pay the fee with their contribution or you can absorb it on their behalf. Either way, rest assured that you're getting the best rate around at Zola.
Your wedding website is one of the best tools at your disposal. Not only does it make all the information about your wedding accessible, but it’s a great way to help your guests learn more about you.
Tell Your Guests How You Met
While some guests probably know your love story, others might not know the details. Whether it’s parents’ friends or distant family members, giving guests the chance to read more about your partnership is a wonderful way to personalize your wedding experience. Outline how you met, touching upon anything funny or out of the ordinary (just be sure to keep it clean—even grandparents know how the internet works) that will make your guests smile.
While some of your guests probably know the story of how you met, others might not know all the details. Whether it’s parents’ friends or estranged family members, giving guests the chance to read more about how your partnership came to be is a wonderful way to personalize your wedding experience. Outline how you met, touching upon anything funny or out of the ordinary (just be sure to keep it clean—even grandparents know how the internet works) that will make your guests smile.
What do you love about each other? What makes you thankful to be marrying your SO? How did the proposal happen? Outline what your journey has been like together and what you hope your future looks like. Your guests will feel much more connected to you after learning why they should be so excited that you’re tying the knot.
Deciding where to go on your honeymoon is a big deal, and your guests are likely eager to learn more about your trip. If you’re setting up a honeymoon fund, giving friends and family the details will help them feel included. Plus, they’ll be much more likely to donate if they know where you’re going and why you want to go there, so don’t hold back.
Did you two talk about going to Hawaii on your first date? Do you both have a passion for Mexican food? Explain how you decided on your honeymoon destination and what you’re looking forward to doing while you’re there. Chances are, there will be a few people who have already traveled there and would be happy to donate to certain experiences and/or give some must-know advice. Others might want to donate so you can experience something that they loved or always wanted to try.
Make your honeymoon fund special! By adding specific details, giving your wedding guests insight as to why you’re so excited about the trip, and showing them just how much their contributions mean to you, you’re more likely to get donations to enjoy on your vacation.
You don’t have to know every single thing you’re going to do on your honeymoon, but you should have an idea of a few key activities or attractions. In addition to admission to must-see spots, add things like boat rides, plane tickets, and lodging to your fund. Your guests will enjoy feeling like they’re gifting you a specific experience versus just handing you a check. The more specific you are with what you’re doing, the better your odds of people contributing.
Zola makes it super simple to create a honeymoon fund, and depending on where you’re going, there’s a good chance we already have a template laid out for you. That being said, making your trip and descriptions even more personal will help your guests understand the importance of your honeymoon. Have you always dreamed about dining under the Eiffel Tower? Is your SO a wine connoisseur and can’t wait to tour a vineyard? Insert your personality into the descriptions to better encourage your guests to donate.
Where are you going? When are you going? Why are you going? Give your guests the details surrounding your trip. Is this a way to relax after the wedding, or is this an exciting adventure before having children? The more personal and honest you are, the better your friends and family will feel about contributing to your honeymoon fund.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and engaging photos in your honeymoon fund will help draw friends and family to the page. While you might not have destination photos (especially if you’re honeymooning somewhere new!), Zola has a large selection of stock images to choose from. Additionally, for things such as walking tours, dining, or even bottles of wine with dinner, try to find photos of you and your SO together to make your registry more personal.
Your guests want to know that you’re actually using the funds for what they contributed, so keep friends and family updated as you plan your trip. In your thank you notes, tell them when you booked your flights, or go out of your way to ask for dining or lodging suggestions. Additionally, if something comes up and the trip has to be postponed or canceled, be upfront about it. Chances are that your contributors will understand if you decide to use the money for a down payment on a house instead of a honeymoon, but it’s better that they hear it directly from you.
Honeyfund is a popular cash fund option where you can register for contributions to a home down payment, charitable donations, and, of course, your honeymoon plans. There aren't any setup fees, but you will get hit with a fee for automatic deposits. Honeyfund is exactly what it says it is—a fund for your dream honeymoon. So, you'll need to find another provider to host your actual wedding website.
This online registry site is very user-friendly and makes it possible to set up a honeymoon fund registry in a matter of moments. The downside? Traveler's Joy charges fees for any credit card gifts.
Joy is one of the newer honeymoon registry sites, and they market themselves as a zero-fee honeymoon fund option. You can receive monetary gifts through PayPal, Venmo, or Cash App, as well as traditional registry gifts from brands like Cuisinart and KitchenAid. Joy also has a partnership with Spur Experiences that makes it easy to find excursions and activities in various locations and add them to your registry.
Deciding to have a honeymoon fund is a personal decision. While the concept is still fairly new, more and more modern couples are opting to create a cash wedding registry, as opposed to (or in addition to) a traditional wedding registry.
While there are plenty of honeymoon funds on the market, there’s one that stands about the rest—and that’s Zola.
Zola is a great option for your honeymoon fund registry because it's a one-stop-shop. You can use Zola to create a customized wedding website, as well as set up both your honeymoon fund and traditional gift registry. From there, you can link everything together, making it easy for guests to not only get the details for your big day and RSVP to your wedding, but also contribute to your honeymoon fun—all in one place.
Ready to get started? Try Zola’s Wedding Registry and Honeymoon Fund today!
Zola also makes it easy to create a honeymoon fund that truly works for you and your partner, whether that means creating a cash registry (which can be deposited directly to your Venmo account) or adding your dream honeymoon adventures and activities—like jet ski rentals, surf lessons, or wine tasting.
Whether you decide to forego tangible items all together or select a mix of both, Zola makes it easy to register for everything—from gifts and experiences to travel—in one convenient location. From trips around the world to staycations nearby, as long as you’re together, it’ll be a honeymoon to remember.