Your Top 10 Wedding Registry Etiquette Questions, Answered
Let’s face it: creating a wedding registry can be overwhelming. There are decisions to make, people to please, and, of course, the logistics of shipping, returning or exchanging. Lucky for you, we know wedding registry.
We answered the top 10 questions we’ve received from Zola couples about dos and don’ts.
Where do I start? I'm overwhelmed!
Totally understandable. Your wedding registry is a perfect opportunity to take inventory of what you already own and see if there’s anything you’d like to upgrade. So often we settle for pots and pans handed down from parents or dishware we bought right after college. You can also check out Zola’s registry checklist to help you cover all the essentials and save you from accidentally adding duplicate items, like six toaster ovens.
How do I ask for cash in a classy way?
Asking for cash is not greedy. We’ve found that guests love it when you personalize your fund, though. So don’t just call it "Honeymoon," but split it up into a specific dinner, an activity, or hotel rooms, so your guests know what they’re contributing to. You will inevitably still have a few guests who love giving something physical, so make sure to keep those people happy and add a few gifts to your registry too.
Is it rude to return a gift that I changed my mind on?
Not at all. We all change our minds sometimes. I digitally exchanged several beautiful items that my husband and I really loved, but we realized had no place in our small N.Y.C. apartment.
We've lived together for many years, so we really don't need anything. What do you recommend?
My husband and I lived together for several years before tying the knot. We registered for gifts that we really wanted to complete our home, like a Dyson Fan, Sonos Speakers, and a Vitamix, but we also registered for experiences we could share together, like a Thai cooking class, as well as created our own cash funds for our honeymoon and some fancy date nights out. Couples these days want to have it all—gifts, experiences, and cash!
How do I tactfully tell people about my registry?
It’s true—if you don’t tell people that you’re registered, you won’t receive any gifts. We recommend printing the information on your save-the-dates and wedding website.
How far in advance should I set up my registry?
Once you’re engaged, it's never too early to start. This especially applies if you’re having an engagement party or a bridal shower and have invited guests who would like to bring physical gifts to that event. And nothing’s ever set in stone—you can edit your registry by adding or removing gifts even after they’re made visible to your guests.
Is it OK to register for something expensive if that's what we really want?
Of course! Your registry is the perfect time to upgrade your kitchen appliances or finally get that sofa you’ve always dreamed of having. Sometimes, it's possible that multiple guests contribute to one bigger ticket item that you really want.
Do we really need to register for china?
Ten or 20 years ago, it used to be that you registered for what you thought you were supposed to have in your home. But the rules have changed: If you don’t need it, don’t register for it! So if you’re not fine china kind of people, then don’t even think about registering for fine china. There are plenty of dishware options you can add that are as elegant every day as they are for a gourmet dinner party. And if you don’t need dishware, take a look at the life you two share, then find gifts that’ll make those experiences even more wonderful.
Is it OK to register for gifts that my partner will never use?
This is bound to happen. One person might love cheese, while the other is lactose-intolerant. You can still register for Cheese of the Month Club, but make sure to add some tasty crackers and fruit to the plate … that’s what marriage is all about—compromise! The key is to let your partner do the same—they should register for a few things specific to them. And who knows, they might surprise you.
How many registries can you have before you start getting side-eye?
They say that more than three puts you in the danger zone.