Engaged couples typically pay a visit to a department store and register for household items as wedding gifts. People expecting a baby also fill out gift registries.
But now you can register and buy all your wedding or baby gifts with a few clicks of a mouse.
Gift registries are a $10 billion business for weddings and that doesn't include cash gifts or presents purchased without using the registry. But like a lot of things, the Internet is making it easier for engaged couples, new graduates or expectant parents to register for gift cards online.
Sites like CardAvenue, Gyft, CardHub and OurWishingWell, make it fast for people to register for gift cards online and for people to give them.
On the Gyft website, people can register for up to eight gift cards they'd like to receive from more than 150 companies and then share what they picked with friends and family on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter or through email. Others can then buy and send the cards through Gyft's website or through the company's mobile app. All the gift cards are digital, not plastic.
CardHub's Gift Card Marketplace offers discounts on gift cards of 10 to 30 percent off. For example, an Amazon gift card on the site is 25 percent off while Starbucks is 18 percent off.
While it may not seem as personal as going to a department store and picking out a gift from the registry, there are advantages to gift cards, like no shipping costs since they're all electronic. Plus, gift cards can be pooled together to buy big ticket items and if they aren't used, they can be sold for cash.
Your Money Matters