It appears as though the perfect gift idea. You purchase a star, name it after the one you love, and then present them with a certificate, the star coronets and all sorts of this other fancy stuff that causes it to be seem like you bought a star for them.
But don't be fooled - no commercial company has the to name stars.
There are at least six companies that offer to market you the rights. It even looks like it's legit - you receive a very prestigious and official looking certificate, pamphlets and other details about your star. And also the price is right - it's only between $40-$60 to purchase a star.
However, what many of these companies don't let you know is they do not have the right to name any star. The only officially recognized source that may name stars is the International Astronomical Union, and last I checked they aren't a commercial organization.
Whenever you visit the website of most from the firms that offer to sell you a star, you will find that they're a bit duplicitous, when it comes to the reality we discussed above. They frequently speak in half-truths, or hide information of your stuff in tiny print at the bottom from the page.
Only when you press them and asked the hardball questions, will you get a straight answer. However, I did locate one exception.
The International Star Registry is probably the most straightforward with precisely what you receive, by collecting a star from their store. In fact, if you place a call on their own 800 number, you'll probably find what I discovered - somebody who provides you with direct answers, and never launch into a sales hype.
Even though the name you allow the heavens won't be officially recognize, it still is quite a cool gift. In fact, for less than $55, from the Star Registry you can purchase certificates on parchment paper, recognizing the name of the star, a booklet explaining consolations, and an astrological chart together with your newly named star highlighted. There are more options you get the certificate frame, and also a letter of congratulations to be sent to the person you're giving the present to.
While it's correct it's more of a novelty gift than anything, it's still a thoughtful gift none the less. If you are going to purchase a star for a loved one, do so from the company that will be straightforward with exactly what they're selling, not someone who is simply attempting to pitch you and also bring your money, while causing you to be to believe that you simply have the rights to the name of the star.