Wedding Honeymoon Fund Etiquette: The Dos and Don’ts
11 Apr 2015
Promotional Feature: Gift list experts Prezola shed light on the art of wedding honeymoon fund etiquette
The etiquette for asking for money is yet to catch up with the honeymoon fund and cash registry trend; in search of professional advice, Emma-Lily Pendleton speaks to online gift list providers, Prezola
Can we ask for money instead of creating a wedding registry? It’s a question posed by many brides and groom-to-be who are increasingly adding a honeymoon fund or cash option to their gift lists.
It is estimated that, in 2014, readers’ weddings cost an average £24,500 – a withering figure. The largest contributing cost was the reception venue, at £4,000, but the second largest cost to the couple was the honeymoon, at £3,900. It is perhaps unsurprising, therefore, that couples are looking to alleviate the financial strain: gone are the days when talk of money was taboo… and with couples happily housed before marriage, traditional home-making gifts can be left redundant. For those looking to explore the alternatives, the award-winning independent gift list service, Prezola, has the answers.
Can I ask for cash?
“Cash towards something important is perfectly acceptable, as long as guests know what they’re helping you to achieve,” says Ali Beaven, co-founder of Prezola. “The easy solution is to try and add a mixture of cash and actual gifts to your list. Saving up for a new sofa? Add this as a cash option with a picture of the sofa to show your guests what you will be using the money towards.”
The way in which you receive the cash is an important detail to consider, however – remember to check with venues whether cash and cheques can be received on the day, as many enforce restrictions for security and insurance purposes.
Even when a venue allow it, proceed with caution, advisees real bride Amy Horton: “We had been saving for our dream honeymoon for months, but asked our guests for cash contributions in place of gifts – we had a generous response, but on the morning after the wedding discovered that the ‘letter box’ we had placed out for guests was empty – we’d had all of the gifted money stolen.” Wedding day festivities can easily lead to mislaid envelopes and errant cheques – ensure a safe keeper is left responsible for leaving with the gifts at the end of the day, or use an online service to minimise risk. Online services will transfer funds direct to your account in full, ready for your disposal.
How about a honeymoon fund?
By breaking down the honeymoon fund into specific cash options, guests can choose the experience that they’re gifting: “Build your list as experiences such as ‘romantic meal on the beach’, ‘flight upgrade’ or ‘diving in the Maldives’ - the cash is yours to do as you wish, with no ties to any travel agent or tour operator, but your guests will feel that they've bought you something truly personal and memorable. In reality, however, you can spend the money on whatever you like.” Sending a thank you card, complete with a honeymoon snap, will see you tick every honeymoon fund etiquette box.
Mix and Match with over 50,000 gift options
If the pressure to make a choice is leaving you in a quandary, don’t panic – there are services that allow you to mix and match; with Prezola, for example, you can choose from over 50,000 gifts by 500 top brands, or select charity donations alongside your honeymoon fund and cash options.
“Although many traditions are changing and younger generations embrace the modern-day wedding, older guests may like to give gifts and good etiquette would be to offer them that opportunity alongside your honeymoon fund option,” explains Ali. “It is a chance to ask for those special upgrade things like top-of-the-range towels and dinnerware that might replace existing homeware, or perhaps travel items, such as luggage.”
Prezola lets you choose from stores and brands all over the high street - 30,000 products, giving the expediency of the high street in the convenience of one, easy-to-use website with one check-out system. Guests use the one-stop service and are presented with all of your options – from The White Company, Heal’s, Cox & Cox, Liberty and House of Fraser homeware to cash, charity and honeymoon contributions. The added benefit of using an online service is that it’s discreet – don’t fret over the wording on your invitation, as on logging-in and entering your individual gift-list number, as guests will be presented with all of your chosen options.
Co-founder of Prezola, Ali Beaven’s, Dos and Don’ts
DO consider a cash or honeymoon fund, as they’re perfectly acceptable.
DO give your guests options, from cash and honeymoon contributions to gift options for those with more traditional sensibilities.
DO carefully maintain a list of guests’ addresses at the invitation stage, later adding gift details, ready for thank you letters.
DON’T leave it until the last minute – advise your guests of your registry intentions with your invitations.
DON’T mislay cash and cheques on your wedding day, when distractions are rife and envelopes are easily misplaced. Consider using an online service instead, to minimise risk and to maximise ease of transaction for guests.