Saturday, September 7, 2013

Wedding Gifts in the Digital Age

Once upon a time, when a couple got married, they were young people just leaving their parent's homes. People showered them with wedding gifts as they had a new household to set up and needed just about everything. Today things are different.  While many people are marrying for the second or third time, even new brides are often in or near their thirties, and have been living in their own homes (with or without their intended husbands) for quite some time.  Their household is already set up, or they are about to combine two. Either way, they don't really need an influx of new stuff, so wedding gifts are much more difficult to buy.  Of course, you can always just write a cheque, but what's the fun in that?  Somehow giving money has always felt so impersonal to me.

Of course, I've heard of gift registries before, but I've never seen any evidence that anyone ever used such a thing until just recently.  The digital age has made wedding planning and gift giving so much easier.

A young friend of ours is about to get married. While we still got the traditional invitation by snail mail, it came with  a card directing us to a website at .  There we could see the whole story. We could read about the proposal and see pictures of the engagement. Not only does the site tell you where and when the wedding will be held, there is a list of who will be taking part in the upcoming wedding and a complete schedule for the activities of the day.  I wouldn't be surprised if the actual wedding photos ended up being displayed there also.  In this digital age, you can also RSVP right there, online.

There was also a link to a gift registry that was set up in a way that made it so easy for us to give a gift without ever having to actually go shopping. Couples can simply list the things they need, and you get to choose the item and how much you want to contribute towards it.

This couple is one of those that already have well established homes and didn't need a lot of stuff that would likely just go into storage. They decided that they would like to go on a lovely honeymoon, touring Europe. The registry listed such things as airfare, hotel nights, romantic dinners, a boat ride, a train pass, and even wine and cheese.  The only things for their home that they put on the registry were a new couch and a washing machine.  Dollar amounts ranged for $8 to $75 with a box to choose multiples of these dollar amounts if you wanted. So all you had to do was choose how much to give and what you felt like aiming it towards.  I wondered what would happen if not enough money was directed at the airfare or the hotels.  Would the trip still be on?   As it turned out the money went directly into the bride's Pay Pal account, where it would accumulate, separated from any actual bank account for the time being. This means they can likely spend the money however they choose when the time comes.  We at least had the chance to participate in their dream, and contribute to which ever gift idea appealed to us most.  That was much more fun than just writing a cheque.  I highly recommend this site to all of you who are now planning a wedding and don't need that extra toaster.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Karen,

    Nice blog!

    We got inspired from a friend wedding and decided to do the same with and for our gift registry. It was much more easier! We were able to communicate with guest without much difficulties. Also, thanks to youtube, we were able to post videos for people that prefer to look at ASL or LSQ.

    It give us more time to focus on more little details to plan for the ceremony and reception.

    In case you were wondering, the Europe trip will still be a go even if we didn't collect enough money. All contribution is making the honeymoon even more special as we will be able to do more romantic things that we could ever dream!

    Thank you all!!!