5 reasons to use a honeymoon registry instead of a travel agent

These days many couples are asking for honeymoon contributions rather than household gifts as wedding presents. A honeymoon registry is a wonderful way for guests to contribute to something meaningful while still being a practical gift (that you actually want!)

When Shane & I (Katie, one of the co-founders of Honeypot) got engaged, we considered using a travel agency for our wedding registry. However, I quickly realised that I prefer arranging travel myself. In fact, I enjoyed organising our honeymoon more than our wedding! I wanted a way to ask for contributions towards travel, without the restrictions of using an agency. This was the start of our journey to create Honeypot! Previously, we’ve compared Honeypot to wishing wells so here are some reasons we rate a honeymoon registry over travel registries.

1. Flexibility in booking

For our honeymoon, we wanted to stay in a variety of accommodations – from a boutique hotel in Niseko, to a very basic AirBnB in Toyko, to a traditional ryokan in Mt Fuji. When we’ve used travel agents in the past, I’ve found the options can be somewhat limited, and often restricted to hotels. If you’re like me, you’ll want the flexibility to book wherever and whenever, and the ability to make use of deals available from different providers.

2. Spend your contributions how you like

A friend of ours used a popular New Zealand travel agency for their wedding registry, unfortunately before Honeypot existed! They said the biggest downside was being forced to spend more on their honeymoon accommodation than planned. While it’s lovely that their guests were so generous, they discovered the agency would only allow them to spend their contributions through direct bookings. This meant they were limited to either airfares or accommodation, rather than spending money for the trip.

3. Get the contributions in your pocket

The other downside of using an agency is that they hold all the funds on your behalf. Some agencies will even forfeit any remaining funds if not used within a certain period. This is often buried in the terms and conditions and we think it’s totally unfair. With Honeypot, your contributions are transferred directly to your bank account every fortnight. If you end up with more than expected – no worries! You can decide whether to put the extra into savings, upgrade your honeymoon plans, or even use it to pay off wedding expenses.

4. Guests get a more personal gifting experience

What sets Honeypot apart from other registries is the ability to customise your registry by adding individual gift items. We always get feedback from guests that they love contributing to a specific gift, rather than just adding some more cash to a fund or wishing well. When our own friends used Honeypot, we contributed to their accommodation in Florence, a city we loved visiting ourselves. It meant a lot more to know that we could help them enjoy one of our favourite places, rather than just adding to a generic travel fund. To read more, check out our blogs on about personalising your registry or using Honeypot to tell your story.

5. Personal customer service from your registry provider

There’s a great scene in The Office, where Jim & Dwight show how they can compete with the ‘big boys’ (in this case, large national paper companies) by offering great customer service. This is exactly the level of service we want to provide at Honeypot. If you ever have a question or need some advice, our team are just a phone call, email, or Facebook message away. We often respond outside of business hours, and because Honeypot is our baby, we take every customer very seriously – as you can see from some of the feedback we received below.

“[Honeypot] was a great way to ask for money without feeling funny about it, and we had lots of great feedback from our guests about how much they enjoyed looking at our honeymoon plans and deciding what to give us! I found it really easy (and fun) to set up, and when I had a few initial issues your communication was excellent. Thank you so very much for providing us with such great service and we can’t wait to go on our honeymoon!”

If you think Honeypot might be right for you, feel free to register below for a no-obligation account. You can start a draft registry straight away for free – you only pay our one-off fee once you’re ready to ‘go-live’ and send out to guests.

Get started button to create a Honeypot Registry free account

Using Honeypot to tell your story

Last month, we compared Honeypot Registry to wishing wells and it was probably our most popular blog to date. This month, we wanted to elaborate on using a personalised registry to create a connection to your guests. We’ve seen hundreds of registries, and one thing we can say without a doubt – those that tell a story are by far the most popular with guests! So here are some of our tips on how to do just that:

Introduce your registry

Each Honeypot has a ‘details’ section at the top which introduces your registry to guests. This is your opportunity to explain why you’ve opted for Honeypot, and a bit more about yourselves too. For example, a couple who used Honeypot for their Queenstown honeymoon shared:

Thanks for visiting our registry. We are lucky enough to already live together with plenty of things for our home. As you all know, we are huge adrenaline junkies! Gifts are by no means expected but if you would like to give us something, we would love your help to fund some of our adventures in Queenstown. Bungy, here we come!

Tell the story of your honeymoon

If you are planning to use Honeypot for your honeymoon (if not, check out some other ideas here), we recommend sharing all the exciting details with your guests. For example, if you’ve always dreamed of visiting Paris, guests will be thrilled to contribute towards your Eiffel tower tickets. Honeypot co-founder Verity and her fiancé Matt are using their Honeypot to tell the story of each destination on their honeymoon adventure – from New York, to London, Berlin and beyond!

Personalise each item

Since our ‘unlimited’ item became available, many couples have used this option for larger items. Where possible, we always recommend adding a personal touch to help guests feel a connection to the gift. For example, one couple used Honeypot to fund a commissioned piece of art for their new home together. We thought this was an awesome example of an item that has both practical and sentimental value. Most importantly it creates a strong connection as guests will get to admire the painting when they visit!

Use humour

Some of the most successful registries we’ve come across have used humour to allow the couple’s personality to shine through. These registries are very popular with guests as they’re not just a registry, but an entertaining experience! One couple photoshopped each item photo with their faces, which was both hilarious and also reminded their friends and family that the money contributed was going towards real gifts that would be enjoyed & cherished by the couple.

We hope that this has given you some ideas about using Honeypot to tell your story, in order to create a greater connection between yourselves, your registry & your guests. However, we can’t take credit for these ideas as we are inspired everyday by the creative and unique registries made by our very own Honeypotters! If you would be interested in having your registry featured on our blog, please get in touch at support@honeypotregistry.co.nz

5 reasons to use Honeypot rather than a wishing well

In today’s world of couples living together before marriage, a wishing well is becoming an increasingly popular option for modern Kiwi couples. However, we think that there’s an even better option out there for couples wanting to keep their guests happy and still receive a practical gift straight into their bank account. Here are some reasons why you should consider Honeypot Registry if you’re thinking of asking for money:

1. Avoid the awkwardness of asking for cash

While it’s becoming more commonplace to ask for cash as a wedding gift, you will likely have some guests who still feel a bit uncomfortable (think your great aunt Doris!) With Honeypot, you can direct guests to your personalised registry, where they can choose any amount to contribute to their gift of choice, making it feel far more special than just bringing cash. Guests can also choose to keep the amount contributed anonymous – we’ll still let you know the other details so you can thank them afterwards!

2. Make it personal with specific items

Honeypot allows you to create a personalised list of gifts that you really want. You won’t be tied down to any store or travel agent – at the end of the day you’ll still receive the cash straight into your bank account. But your guests will be choosing what that cash goes towards, whether it’s accommodation in a traditional Fijian burre or a hiking trip in the Andes!

Time and time again, we get feedback from couples and guests about how they appreciate the personal touch of contributing to a specific item rather than just giving an envelope of cash. To read on about unique gift ideas in Honeypot, check out this blog.

3. Manage your budget with contributions every fortnight

If you’re planning to use a wishing well for your honeymoon, it can be tricky to budget and pay in advance when you have no idea how much you’ll receive. Especially when you’re trying to pay for your wedding at the same time! With Honeypot, you can check how much has been contributed at any time. Unlike other registries that pay out after your wedding, we also transfer your contributions every fortnight, so you don’t need to pay everything out of pocket.

4. Avoid the hassle of banking cash

When we asked couples about the biggest downside of wishing wells, their answer surprised us. Many mentioned the logistical difficulty of looking after and banking a large amount of cash after the wedding. This is something you don’t want to be worrying about – instead, you should be basking in post-marital bliss!

5. Make it easier for your overseas guests

Honeypotters often feedback to us how useful Honeypot was for their overseas guests. For those who can’t make it to New Zealand but would still like to send a gift, they can easily find your registry and contribute using their overseas credit card. For the guests who can make it, using Honeypot is still far easier than withdrawing and exchanging cash.

For these reasons and more, Honeypot Registry makes the giving experience exceptional. Set up your no-obligation account here and get started on creating your own personalised registry!

Get started button to create a Honeypot Registry free account

Your registry, your way: New features for your wedding registry

Well, it’s been over a year since Honeypot launched, and what a year it’s been! As we come into our second wedding season, it’s so exciting to see how many happy couples have used Honeypot for their dream honeymoons or to fill their homes with special items that they absolutely love.

Now, we’re excited to offer a couple of new features based on the feedback we’ve been getting from you. They’re set to make Honeypot even more flexible and customisable than it was before.

So what’s new?

Customised URLs

You ask; we provide! Several Honeypotters asked if they could make their own URL so that they could include it in their invites or on their wedding website and send people directly to their registry instead of to the homepage. Now you can! When you’re setting up your registry, simply choose the name you want and you’ve got a personalised URL to share with your guests.

Open-ended items

So many couples have been amazed by the generosity of their guests. In fact, some guests have given so much that the gifts the couples included in their registry were fully gifted well before the wedding and they had to add extra items. To save you from needing to keep adding extra items, we’re now giving you the ability to create unlimited items.

Whether a general “honeymoon food fund” or “post-wedding date night treasury”, you now have the ability to make any item unlimited. Once the other items get filled up, guests can keep adding to a more general fund. To make it more personal, why not ask them to suggest what you should do with the money? A place to eat or a date night idea?

As you’re setting up the item, just tick the box that says ‘Open Ended’ and guests will be able to keep giving as much as they like towards that item right up until your registry closes!

Last opportunity for a lower price

One other thing that’s changing is the price for using Honeypot.

You see, as is often the case with new businesses, we realised that we didn’t quite get the pricing right – and because we want to be able to keep investing in the platform and updating it in the ways that our awesome customers have been asking for, we will be raising the price to a flat fee of only $150 (NZD) from 8 October 2017.

So what does that mean for you?

Luckily, not too much! So long as you go live by 7 October, you’ll still pay our old price of $130. You’ll still get to create your own customised registry with all the items you want – and your guests will still get to feel like they’re giving you the perfect gift.

PLUS because we’ve already launched our new features, you’ll get to take advantage of them without paying any more than you would have before now.

So are you ready to get your registry up and running? Get started now.

Getting creative: Our top 5 unique registry items

Now we’re at the end of our first big summer wedding season, we decided to look back on some of the more unconventional gift items we’ve seen on Honeypot. The beauty of using a cash wedding registry like Honeypot is you can add absolutely anything you can think of for your guests to contribute towards. Plus, you’re not tied to one shop or supplier. These creative couples certainly used that to their advantage! So let’s count down our favourites…

5) Donations towards a favourite charity

One generous couple added an item for their guests to give to an organisation of the couple’s choice instead of giving something for the couple themselves. If you feel somewhat uncomfortable about accepting gifts, this could be a lovely option for your guests to contribute towards a special cause.

4) Babysitting for the kids

For those getting married with young kids, weddings can be a bit of a stretch on the family budget. One couple added a babysitting fund so they could have some alone time on their honeymoon – what a good idea!

3) Vote for a honeymoon destination

This couple were struggling to decide on a honeymoon spot – so instead they set up a few different locations as items on their honeymoon registry. Whichever item ended up with the biggest fund would be the final destination!

2) A touch of nature

These Honeypotters had a big landscaping job planned for their new house. They had a huge list of different native plants to buy, and their guests certainly helped them achieve this!

1) New addition to the family

By far our favourite Honeypot item yet – a puppy! Who could resist contributing towards that, especially if you were guaranteed a cuddle in the future?!

We hope this list has provided you with some wedding registry inspiration. For more creative gift ideas, check out our alternative gift items blog. We can’t wait to see next year’s selection of registry items!

How we used a honeymoon registry for our perfect honeymoon

It seems crazy that it was a year ago that Honeypot co-founders Katie & Shane got hitched and headed off on their honeymoon. We’ve had several people ask what kind of things they could use Honeypot for on their honeymoon, so Katie decided it was about time she shared a little about how they used it to have the most perfect honeymoon possible.

In April 2016, Shane and I set off on an amazing 4 week adventure. If you were going to choose a theme for our honeymoon, it would have to be “fire and ice” – we went from skiing in Japan to sunsets in Bali! However, it wouldn’t have been possible without our generous guests contributing to our Honeypot. We decided to make our wedding registry a mix of flights, accommodation, and special treats that we probably wouldn’t have been able to afford without help from our guests.

Here are a few of our highlights:

Staying in a luxury ski lodge

One of our Honeypot items was a stay in Kimamaya Lodge in Niseko, Japan. This boutique hotel was simply amazing. Some of our favourite aspects were personal shuttles to the chairlifts, a complimentary bottle of bubbles on arrival and two private onsen rooms (a Japanese hot pool tradition). We loved skiing in Japan so much we recently returned over New Year for a week!

Cherry blossoms in Kyoto

We timed our trip to Japan to coincide with the legendary cherry blossom season. Japanese people go absolutely NUTS for sakura! We saw cherry trees everywhere but the best spot has to be the ancient city of Kyoto, where there are temples and Japanese gardens galore.  Our guests contributed to a hanami party, a nightime picnic under lit up blossoms. I loved the scenery but I think Shane was more into the takoyaki (octopus balls!)

Experiencing Tokyo

We added a general item on our Honeypot for “Tokyo Spending Money”. This allowed us to really experience the craziness, beauty and hustle of Tokyo without having to plan too much in advance. Some of our favourite activities were visiting an owl café, seeing Tokyo from a bar on the 34th floor, and shopping in the massive department stores. Being squeezed onto a train with literally thousands of people at rush hour was less enjoyable, but still quintessentially Tokyo!

Cocktails in Bali

After three weeks in Japan, we needed a week to relax and kick back in Bali. After a stressful flight to Bali from Tokyo (piece of advice – always book excess luggage BEFORE you arrive at the airport!), it was wonderful to arrive to a cold drink at our hotel. I’m not ashamed to say we then proceeded to work through the entire list of cocktails throughout our stay at the Tanjung Sari, on Sanur Beach. Once again, our guests had contributed to this via Honeypot.

We sent out thank you notes when we got back, and heard from lots of guests that they loved the photos we included of us enjoying their contributions. Similarly, we hope everyone using Honeypot has an amazing honeymoon experience – we’d love to hear your stories, so if you’d like to share how you used your Honeypot registry, just get in touch!

Wedding registries: How much should we ask for?

Ah, the age old question. Someone more sarcastic would come back with the classic dad answer “how long is a piece of string?” but we at Honeypot know that it’s actually a pretty tricky question!

Judging how much to ask for on your honeymoon or gift registry can be hard – you don’t want to ask for so much that you look greedy but you also don’t want to put so few items that people run out of things to give you.

Too many isn’t a thing

Well okay, if you put 500 different items on your registry, it MIGHT be a bit of overkill… But generally no-one’s going to be offended if you put heaps of options on your registry – after all, it allows them to choose something that they think would be special coming from them.

Assume everyone will give at least $50…

And then add in some leeway. While everyone may not be able to afford a huge amount, it’s likely that many will give at least $50 each, and some generous (often older) relatives could give even more. Therefore make sure you’ve added gifts that total an average of at least $50 per person coming to your wedding (and preferably add a bit more just in case).

Add a mix of small and bigger items

Everyone will give a different amount towards your wedding registry, so try to include a mix of both smaller items (such as cocktails on the beach or a dinner out) with bigger items (such as concert tickets or skydiving). That way people have lots of choice and can give at a level they feel comfortable with

Include a couple of big ticket items

Your guests may surprise you with how generous they are – so make sure you’ve always got a couple of big ticket items up your sleeve on your gift or honeymoon registry. This could be a lounge suite for $3000 or flights to Bali for $2000 – either way, it means that should the smaller, specific items be gifted already, there’s always an opportunity for guests to add to the pool of money for bigger items.

However many gifts you decide to add, don’t forget to make them things you really want, and thank your guests as soon as you can. It truly won’t matter how much you ask for if you show real appreciation for their generosity. And don’t forget – with Honeypot you can always add extra items later!

Thinking outside the honeymoon – alternate wedding registry items

People have started asking what you would like as a wedding gift, but you’re stumped. Perhaps you already have all the traditional items such as kitchenware, and a honeymoon isn’t on the cards for you.

To help you out, we’ve come up with some ideas for larger items that multiple guests can contribute towards – after all, what wedding guest doesn’t want you to help you achieve your dreams? Using Honeypot will allow your guests to get excited about what they’re putting money towards and allow you to thank those who contributed.

Deposit on a house

For many couples, purchasing your first home is a big step towards your future life together – and with the house prices in New Zealand (okay, mostly Auckland), it couldn’t hurt to get some help. Allowing your guests to be a part of this may be the perfect option for the budget-conscious couple – just remember to throw an awesome house-warming party for everyone once you move in!

Renovation costs

If you’re already past the step of purchasing your first home, you may be considering renovations. You could list items needed, such as timber, tiles or even tradesman costs. Once your renovations are finished, invite everyone around to thank them and show off the house!

Large appliances or furniture

If you’re anything like the Honeypot team, your furniture and whiteware is probably a mishmash of hand-me-downs, TradeMe purchases and leftovers from old flatmates! Asking guests to contribute to a good quality dining table, lounge suite, fridge or washing machine could be a great practical option that will last for years to come.

Home entertainment

Maybe you’re less of a homemaker and more into gadgets? A new TV or gaming console could be the perfect gift for you. Just remember to invite your guests over to watch the game or for a gaming afternoon to thank them!

 

Whatever you decide you need some help with, add it to your Honeypot gift registry and let your guests choose what they’d like to help you save for. Rather than just giving you impersonal cash, they’ll get to make a contribution to your future – and who doesn’t want to do that?

What on earth is a honeymoon registry?

Get the gift you really want – in other words, what on earth is a honeymoon registry?

So you’re getting married. Congratulations! I’m sure by now you’ve looked at several wedding mags, scrawled through countless blogs and been inundated with wedding advice. Never before have you been asked to make so many decisions!

One thing that might feel like too much hard work to think about right now is your wedding registry. Continue reading “What on earth is a honeymoon registry?”