Whether you want money, a plasma TV, or an amazing honeymoon, we’ll tell you how to get the wedding gifts you really want.
Step 1: Decide what you want Figure out what you want most. These days, you can register for just about anything: cash, mortgage payments, air travel, donations to your favorite charities, stocks, and so on.
TIP: Limiting the registry options makes it more likely that guests will comply--so stick to what you really want!
Step 2: Find a registry Find an appropriate registry or registries by Googling 'wedding registry' and the word for whatever you want--'cash,' 'travel,' 'stocks,' etc.
Step 3: Consider a mixed-bag registry If you want all sorts of odds and ends from many different stores, consider signing up with "www.myregistry.com":http://www.myregistry.com. It lets you create a master list of stuff you want from multiple stores.
Step 4: Request experiences Get cash to pay for your honeymoon—without the tackiness of asking for it—by setting up a honeymoon registry on a site like "thehoneymoon.com":http://thehoneymoon.com or "travelersjoy.com":http://travelersjoy.com. Request specific honeymoon experiences you hope to enjoy--and your guests will feel like they’re buying you something tangible.
TIP: Send a picture of yourself enjoying the gift with your thank you note.
Step 5: Sign up for all price ranges Make it easy for people to give what they can afford by letting them choose from a range of amounts.
TIP: Pick places that let your guests shop in multiple ways--online, over the phone, or in person. Not everyone will be comfortable going online.
Step 6: Get bonus gifts Register on a website that gives you frequent-flyer miles whenever a guest buys something from your list. "Theknot.com":http://Theknot.com gives couples one mile for every dollar spent on their site.
Step 7: Get the word out You’re ready to rake it in, so enlist the help of close friends and family members in spreading the word about where you’re registered and what you’re really hoping for. And do what many modern couples do, and set up a wedding website, where you can nudge guests to your registry in a classy way.
TIP: Because the point of a bridal shower is to 'shower' you with gifts, your registry information should go on the invitation--but it’s considered tacky to include it with the wedding invitation.
Step 8: See if you can cash in See if you can cash in the gifts made toward something you end up not using, like an airline trip.
Step 9: Check return policies Before you sign up with a national chain, check if gifts that were bought online can be returned to a local store. Many couples secretly swap lots of smaller gifts for one large one.
FACT: Americans spend $19 billion a year buying gifts from wedding registries.