While a bread maker or espresso machine are great gifts for a newly married couple, let’s be honest: there’s nothing quite like the gift of cash (or checks!). Cash provides options. It pays bills. It settles debt. It can contribute towards a new car or home, all things that ultimately trump an upright vacuum or a new set of his and her towels. But brides and grooms may feel awkward soliciting cash from guests. After all, the wedding registry is a long-standing tradition and a way for guests to offer a gift that’s more personal.
So how to request cash gifts while minding social etiquette? Here’s what I’ve recently discovered:
- Crowdfund Online: Crowdfunding is a unique way to leverage the Internet and raise money through your network of family, friends and friends of friends for practically any type of project. The concept began about 10 years ago primarily as a way to fund creative ventures, but today is much more widespread. At GoFundMe.com, for example, you can register to raise money for your honeymoon, house, car or all three. Once you’ve established your online fundraiser, indicate on your wedding invitation or wedding web site that you are registered at GoFundMe.com. Highlighting a specific goal for your fundraiser like — “Our First Home” or “Honeymoon in Europe” can help gift-givers feel like they’re really contributing to something meaningful, as opposed to just a random money fund. Guests can pay directly to the fund using Paypal. Other online sites like GoFundMe include IndieGoGo and KickStarter.
- Register for Gift Cards: Gift cards are sort of like cash and at CardAvenue couples can register for gift cards from hundreds of stores. If Prince William and his new wife Kate Middleton did have a gift card registry, here’s what the web site suspects it might have looked like.
- Register For Your Honeymoon: Whether you hope to take an African safari or tour the Greek islands you can now ask your guests to contribute to your honeymoon expenses with the help of HoneyFund, a free online honeymoon registry. Guests can contribute to specific parts of your trip, too, like airfare, dinner, champagne and event tickets.
[Related Article: When Financial Opposites Attract]
Image: Marcus Hansson, via Flickr.com