By Diane Ako
HONOLULU (KHNL) - More than a quarter million Americans honeymooned in Hawaii last year. That number could rise significantly, thanks to a new trend in gift registries. The trendiest wedding presents are now once-in-a-lifetime adventures.
Honeymoons are a trip of a lifetime, and often cost more than a standard vacation package. Now travel agencies and other companies are making it easier for couples to find their way to Hawaii.
Kiriko and Duke Oishi just got married last weekend. "When we were going over the cost of the wedding we realized we'd be broke after the wedding," says Kiriko.
So instead of registering for traditional gifts, they decided to ask friends to donate to their "honeyfund." Duke explains, "We didn't feel we wanted a nice crystal bowl or dishes. Because we like to travel so much we wanted to go on an awesome honeymoon."
WeddingChannel.com says this is a new, hot trend. The Oishis are called transumers- short for "transient consumers."
Contributing Editor Jena Tanaka explains, "Transumers are consumers driven by experience. So it's the couples who want the surf lessons, the romantic beach dinner, or a fabulous trip."
It could spell dollars for Hawaii's tourism industry, by making Hawaiian honeymoons more accessible.
Tanaka continues, "Over half our couples really want a tropical wedding. That's the ultimate dream. This really is a great business opportunity for Hawaii."
Pleasant Holidays travel agency, which has a branch in Hawaii, offers a wedding registry.
Vice President Duke Ah Moo says about 5,000 people have used it so far. "It's hugely popular. Over the last couple years people have decided they have the pots and pans and something more useful like a honeymoon vacation would be more valuable. The registry is a great tool for the state for tourism because the average package price for people on a honeymoon is almost double the package price for a trip to Hawaii."
Couples say it's an idea whose time has come. "We already have all the material things we want and it's more about experiencing new things."
WeddingChannel.com says in 2005 about 69% of its couples were interested in registering for a honeymoon. That's up from 57% in 2003. So this is a continuing trend.
For more wedding-planning advice, tools, photos, and more, visit WeddingChannel.com, the number one wedding and gift registry website, offering comprehensive wedding planning content, interactive tools, and a central location for couples to manage their gift registries.