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The No Gift Wedding RegistryThe No Gift Wedding Registry

published July 23rd, 2014

When you come to get married there’s a good chance that you’ll compile some sort of gift registry, rather than be inundated with unwanted presents like multiple toaster ovens… or a kettle in a ghastly shade of green that really doesn’t go with your kitchen decor. But what if you really don’t want any gifts? The problem is that some people will “insist” on buying you a gift, regardless of what you say. Some guests may deem showing up empty handed to be “rude”, so even though you insisted on no gifts you may find yourself lumbered with a few anyway. That’s where you smile politely, say thank you and contemplate how much you might get for it on eBay.

So what can you do to combat this unwanted gift predicament? Some couples favour the cheesy approach with words on their wedding website like: “The greatest gift you can give us is your presence at our wedding” but that still won’t dissuade an ardent gift buyer from whipping out that fruit mixer with the words: “I know, I shouldn’t have… but I thought it’d be rude not to!”. When it’s actually ruder to go against the wishes of the couple and buy something anyway…

Rather than just say “we don’t want any presents” you may wish to consider some alternative options…

A honeymoon registry is a tactful way to ask for money to put towards your romantic getaway. Whether the money goes toward the cost of the flights, accommodation or spending money while you’re there… it will all help. There’s a good chance that the cost of your wedding has left you counting the pennies so don’t get all proud and refuse monetary donations. They could really make a huge difference to your honeymoon, and the giver will be happy that their money contributed to something so memorable.

Alternatively, if you’re already swimming in dollar bills or don’t want to accept money then there are plenty of charity organisations that will be only too happy to accept donations. JustGive.org offers a charity wedding registry, and since its inception six years ago, the site has raised nearly $1.7 million for charitable organisations by honouring 2,300 couples through their online registry. It’s a great option if you want to give to a charity close to your heart - or you just simply have too much stuff already.

In order to create a charity wedding registry you simply need to produce a personalised registry page with details about your wedding and then select your favourite charities. Guests can then select one of your chosen charities and donate. Couples can choose large national charities (such as Feeding America or American National Red Cross) or local grassroots charities. As long as it’s a recognised charity and not something you’ve just made up.

Most couples select a charity for personal reasons. For example if a close friend or family member has recently passed away from cancer then they’re more likely to select a cancer charity. It could even be that your pet dog has recently passed away and he was meant to be the ring bearer on your big day… in which case you may want the money to go to an animal charity.

Don’t be afraid to think outside the gift registry box. If you’re a couple of entrepreneurs on the brink of starting your own business empire then it wouldn’t be cheeky to ask for donations to boost your start-up costs. You’ll find that your friends and family will be only too happy to help! Also don’t forget that if you’re planning to decorate or renovate your home then monetary donations could go a long way… but it doesn’t even need to come in the form of monetary donations. Don’t feel uncomfortable about asking your guests for gifts of paint, wallpaper, even carpets or floor tiling… as long as you choose it all yourself!

This is your big day and you’ll find that friends and family members will be only too pleased to contribute to it in a way that makes you happy. Just be specific about what you want, no matter now bizarre or unconventional it may sound. Otherwise your guests will go out of their way to be “creative” themselves…

The No Gift Wedding Registry