There’s no denying that weddings can be a very expensive affair. No matter how well you manage to stick to your wedding budget, the expenses can still add up which makes it harder to justify jetting off for a honeymoon afterwards.
If you’re worried about being able to afford a honeymoon, then why not make the most of your wedding gift list and ask your guests to help raise money for your post wedding getaway? We spoke to the teams behind some of the UK’s top gift list sites to get their expert advice on having a honeymoon gift list.
Find out more: The best wedding gift lists
Why have a honeymoon gift list?
As mentioned above, your funds may be limited when it comes to booking a honeymoon, or perhaps you and your other half already have everything you want and don’t need any more items for your home – in which case, a honeymoon gift list would be the perfect option.
“It's really common for couples to live together before getting married, so chances are that they won't need many extra items to fill their home,” explains Ali Beaven, the Co-Founder and Creative Director of Prezola. “Setting up a honeymoon fund is a great way to have guests contribute to your romantic getaway without bluntly asking for money.”
Of course, it’s not mandatory to go abroad and there are plenty of no-fly honeymoon ideas that you could consider. However, if you’ve both got your hearts set on a romantic trip abroad, then a honeymoon gift list means that you won’t have to delay the trip until you’ve saved up enough money after the wedding (which could take a while depending on how well you stuck to your budget!).
We also spoke to Jemma Purvis, a Public Relations Officer at Kuoni, who gave her take on this growing trend: “Increasingly more couples are looking for an alternative to the classic gift list. A honeymoon gift list allows friends and family to contribute to a couple’s once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon.”
If you’re shy about asking for money instead of gifts at your wedding, then take comfort in the fact that more and more couples nowadays are opting to go down this route.
“Honeymoon gift lists are definitely gaining popularity,” reveals Ali. “50% of couples who use Prezola have a mixture of cash and gifts on their wedding gift list, whilst 20% only want cash.
“So don't be shy about asking for money - guests really want to buy a gift to commemorate your marriage and if money towards your honeymoon is what you want, then they should be more than happy to help.”
How do I organise this kind of gift list?
Honeymoon gift lists can be set up in the same way that you’d create a wedding gift list. Most couples choose to create electronic lists online through one of the many retailers and websites that offer this service.
If you have a very specific idea of what you want on your gift list, check out Prezola’s specialised Honeymoon Fund service - it allows you to completely personalise your list to the type of holiday that you’re after or your preferred honeymoon destination.
“Unlike department stores on the high street, there's no commission fee with Prezola’s Honeymoon Fund and 100% of the money goes straight into your bank account,” says Ali. “Your money is also insured so it's a completely safe way to set up a honeymoon gift list.”
When you announce the gift list to your guests, don’t feel like you have to explain the reasoning behind the decision to have this over a normal gift list. However, if you do want to go into more detail then that’s absolutely fine.
With Kuoni’s online service, a gift list can easily be personalised to include a message from the couple.
Jemma explains more: “With Kuoni’s online gift list service, you can customise your page with a welcome message and tell guests about your honeymoon plans.
“Couples will also receive a welcome pack which includes 100 announcement cards that can be sent out to friends and family – on these you could explain that you have already set up a home and have everything you both need, but would love guests to contribute towards the honeymoon.”
With honeyfund.co.uk, you can even set up your own app so you can keep track of your gift list on the go – the perfect solution for a modern day couple with busy lifestyles.
“With the honeyfund.co.uk app, it's easier than ever to create a custom honeyfund.co.uk page in just a few minutes,” explains CEO and Co-Founder Sara Margulis. “There’s even a new social post generator which makes sharing the news of your wedding extremely fun!”
What can we include in a honeymoon gift list?
Honeymoon gift lists don’t strictly have to ask for just cash, if you can afford the flights but not the actual holiday then you could even ask for guests to buy you ‘experiences’ for when you go.
For example, if you both want to go on an African adventure, then you could ask guests to buy you a day safari trip or a romantic dinner for two so that the activities for when you’re there are sorted. Perhaps they could even get you a camera so that you can document your trip.
Or if two weeks lying on a beach is more your cup of tea, your guests could book you experiences such as scuba-diving or a massage on the beach.
With a Prezola honeymoon gift list, you have the option of creating a list that has contents of your choosing, or alternatively, you could choose from the hundreds of options already on the site if you’re stuck for honeymoon ideas.
“Prezola offers many honeymoon experiences that guests may not be able to buy otherwise, such as cocktails on the beach or a spa day for two,” explains Ali. “Of course, you can still ask for money that isn't tied to anything and is yours to spend however you wish (if you spend it in duty free, we won't tell!), but some guests may feel better if they're contributing to something specific on your special holiday. Whatever they spend on you, don't forget to thank them and send pictures on social media of the romantic dinner they’ve funded!”
If you’re well and truly stuck on what destination to go for, you may even get inspiration from your honeymoon gift list provider. The hottest places to go right now? “Our top honeymoon destinations right now include the Maldives, Bali, Mauritius, Sri Lanka and Thailand,” reveals Jemma.
Can I combine a honeymoon gift list with an ordinary one?
Yes you can! If you’re sold on the honeymoon gift list idea but there are still a few items that you feel would complete your home, then it’s perfectly acceptable to combine both types of gift list.
“As Kuoni is the exclusive travel partner of John Lewis, couples can simply add their honeymoon to their John Lewis gift list,” says Jemma. “This is so guests have a choice of contributing presents, gift cards or something towards the honeymoon.
“Couples can arrange appointments to discuss their honeymoon with Kuoni’s personal travel experts throughout stores across the UK, plus at Kuoni concessions in selected John Lewis department stores.”
Can guests with a small budget still contribute?
If you’re worried that some guests may not be comfortable funding your honeymoon because they don’t have a lot of money themselves, then it’s a good idea to create a gift list with varied values so that even guests with low budgets can contribute to your trip.
“There is never any obligation for a guest to buy a wedding gift, and the cost of a gift should be completely up to the giver,” says Sara.
“What's nice about honeyfund is that guests can choose to buy the couple experiences such as a sightseeing tour, flight upgrade or cocktails by the beach, which aren’t necessarily that expensive but still provide a cherished contribution to the trip.”
With Prezola, it’s easy for every guest to contribute something to the gift list, regardless of their budget or relationship to the couple.
“You can add different values to your Prezola Honeymoon Fund by including a selection from the site’s extensive gift options, which means that guests with budgets high and low can contribute,” explains Ali. “Just some of the options include flight upgrades, car hire, glamping, hot air balloon rides to name but a few – you have complete flexibility. Put thought into your gift list and you’ll be able to create the honeymoon of your dreams.”
Once you’ve set up your gift list and have decided where you’re going after the wedding, don’t forget to download our ultimate honeymoon checklist so that you’re fully prepared!