There are a ton of stores where you can buy baby stuff and most of those stores want you to create a baby registry with them so that all your friends will have to visit that store to buy you baby shower gifts, etc. Some stores, like Giggle, will even give you cute little cards to include with your baby shower invitations and/or birth announcements that tell everyone which store to visit to find your registry (helps prevent “Oh, you didn’t have a registry at the store I visited so I just bought you these bottles from a brand you don’t like and baby booties that you already have enough of.”). And, of course, every store will give you a checklist of the baby “essentials” you need to buy.
But even if you think nobody is actually going use your registry (and you might be surprised – we were), you should absolutely still make at least one (or as many as possible in case you have non-internet savvy family members who can only shop at actual stores nearby them). Here’s the first good reason: registry completion discounts. Most stores will give you a coupon for 10% off any of the items remaining on your registry that weren’t bought for you. So, if you’re going to end up buying stuff for yourself, put it on your registry and then wait for your coupon!! (Note: the coupon is mailed after your due date, so up your due date by a few weeks when registering to make sure you get the coupon in time to use it before you bring baby home).
Second reason to create a registry: free gift bags!!! Now, I am a bit of a gift bag addict, but I think everyone likes free stuff, especially when they’re things you actually need. I’ve only found 3 stores that give actual gift bags just for creating a registry with them: Target, Buybuy Baby and Babies”R”Us so of course, I did the “hard” work of trying them all out for you. :) Probably based on the season and availability, I know that what you see here is probably not exactly the same as what you’ll get, but it’ll give you a good estimate (2 years ago, with my first baby, I got a car sunshade and a bib, for example, which were not in the gift bags this year). These gift bags benefit stores because after you try the products and like them, you’ll use the enclosed coupons to go back to that store and make a full-sized purchase. And I loved that there were very few duplicate gift items between stores. Here’s the breakdown:
* Buybuy baby gift bag: Fit Pregnancy magazine, Baby Talk magazine, a NUK orthodontic silicone pacifier 0-6m, an Avent 4oz baby bottle with nipple and lid, sample of grape scented saline Boogie Wipes, sample of Belli elasticity belly oil, sample of Johnson’s Natural baby lotion, sample of Mustela baby body lotion, Medela breastfeeding information guide, and coupons from BabyGanics, Gerber and most of the companies mentioned previously.
*Babies”R”Us gift bag: American Baby magazine, Disney baby growth chart, 2 samples of grape scented saline Boogie Wipes, sample of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste (perfect for diaper bags), 1 newborn Pampers Swaddlers diaper and sample of Pampers Sensitive wipes, the Babies”R”Us new baby buying guide (but contains no prices!), $25 voucher and additional coupons for Kiddie Kandids portrait studio, assorted coupons from Huggies and most companies mentioned previously.
*Target gift bag: 1 Newborn Huggies diaper, 1 set of Lansinoh nursing pads, 2 Lansinoh breastmilk storage bags, $20 Shutterfly gift card, baby guide with Target coupons, and other assorted coupons.