New research reveals that wedding guests in the UK spend more than £4billion every year on wedding gifts but a staggering £118 million is wasted on unwanted presents.
More than half of newlyweds admit they don’t like the gifts they receive with 1 in 3 grooms selling, exchanging or giving away their unwanted presents.
The research, commissioned by the Saint Lucia Tourist Board, one of the UK’s leading wedding and honeymoon destinations, looked at couples’ attitudes to wedding presents over the decades and at current trends in creating wedding lists. The survey found that 1 in 5 couples today ask for cash so that they can buy what they want, when they want with an increasing trend towards using the funds to pay for unique experiences whilst on honeymoon.
As a result, the Saint Lucia Tourist Board has created an online Wedding Gift Converter at www.saintlucianow.co.uk/weddinggifts which reveals the cost of a range of unique honeymoon experiences on Saint Lucia versus the price of a number of home and kitchen wares that are a favourite on UK wedding lists. These include:
For approx £70, instead of two Diptyque scented candles, a couple could enjoy a romantic sunset Caribbean cruise
Two people could enjoy a helicopter tour of Saint Lucia for the same price as a Dualit Expressivo coffee machine (£170)
For less than half the price of a John Rocha Waterford crystal vase, a couple could go horseriding on a stunning Saint Lucian beach (£61)
Two thirds of couples in their 60s who married 30-40 years ago simply did not expect or ask for any gifts – a stark contrast to couples marrying today where just 1 in 3 couples have an altruistic approach to their wedding day
Nearly 1 in 5 grooms ask their guests for something original vs just 1 in 10 brides who are much more cautious
Two thirds of couples now live together for an average of 2 years and 8 months before getting married and have already set up home together, negating the need for a standard ‘brides book’ or wedding list
Says Louis Lewis, Director of Tourism, Saint Lucia Tourist Board, ‘Our research revealed an increasing trend in couples looking for unique and memorable gifts and experiences that will make their honeymoon time together really stand out. Saint Lucia offers an incredible array of unforgettable experiences for honeymooners and the memory of a champagne sunset cruise or a whale watching trip will stay with you much longer than a pasta making machine or a king-size duvet set.’
Further research revealed the top 10 wedding gifts most likely to be sold on, given away or hidden in the attic are
1. ornaments (especially animals)
2. brightly patterned towels
4. tea towels
5. photo frames (especially pewter ones)
7. place mats
8. comedy aprons
9. mug trees
10. table linen