Your honeymoon is a big deal! Your first time away as a married couple, this is a trip you’ll be telling your kids, and even grandkids about. But amidst the stress of wedding preparations already underway, it’s easy to see honeymoon-planning as an additional burden, which can be overshadowed by the myriad of plans to be made for the big day. But we’re here to tell you – it doesn’t have to be this way. Planning a memorable honeymoon can not only be simple, but the process of planning the perfect trip tailored to the two of you can bring you even closer together. We’ve compiled a list of tips to help you plan a honeymoon that maximizes the romance, and minimizes the worries. Yes, it’s possible.
1. Brainstorm together
A honeymoon is not an ordinary vacation. While it is great to get away and relax, what makes this trip so special is the chance to spend quality time doing the things you enjoy together as a couple, and to rediscover each other in this new chapter as newly-weds.
In order to do so, it is important that the trip truly reflects what you both want. This means that, regardless of who takes the lead on the actual planning, where you go and what you do should be decided by you as a couple. In the brainstorming stage, it is worth spending some time discussing what kind of honeymoon you want to have – whether it be filled to the brim with activities and excursions, or a more intimate and low-key time spent relaxing together. This will not only make your planning easier, but will ensure the trip is equally unforgettable for both of you.
Once you’ve discussed your vision for the trip, it’s time to do a little research. If you haven’t yet agreed on a destination, take a look at different options based on what it is you want to do. Say you both envision a trip of sun and sea-based activities, take a look at the top beach or tropical vacation spots and compile a short list which you choose from together. Alternatively, you might have a country in mind for a trip filled with art and culture, but can’t decide which city or town to visit specifically. You could then research interesting cultural sights across the country, and see where the spots that pique your interest the most are clustered.
2. Set a budget
Having been through it for the wedding, you’ll be no stranger to budgeting – but don’t worry, it’s a lot easier to plan a budget-friendly honeymoon than a wedding. Still, just like with the wedding, it is important to have an idea in advance of how much you are able to spend on your trip. This way you can choose to either make your trip fit your existing budget, or save for the more lavish honeymoon you want to have. If the latter is the case, you may want to start making small changes to your normal spending habits, pick up some extra hours at work, or dip into your savings to help finance your trip. Perhaps you would also rather skip a gift registry and ask your wedding guests for cash gifts towards your trip. In any case, knowing your budget, however big or small, will allow you to make the most out of what you’ve got.
3. Choose where to stay and how to get there
When choosing where to stay, you will want to do a little digging again and familiarize yourself with the accommodation options. For most destinations, there are a number of different types of accommodation – ranging from five-star hotel suites, to waterfront villas, to cozy wood cabins, to just a comfortable and convenient Airbnb apartment. Whatever your choice may be, take advantage of online price comparison tools before making your booking in order to get the best value. Also if you’ve found a great place early on, but want to search a little more without losing the deal, see if free cancellation is offered. This way you’re able to keep looking for even better places and prices with the safety of a good backup – just be sure to cancel any unwanted bookings in time! And when you do make your booking, be sure to let them know that you’ll be on your honeymoon. With a little luck you just might receive some special surprises.
What’s more, if you’re looking for a way to make your honeymoon even more magical, you might want to spend a few nights somewhere unconventional and exciting. Many websites will offer options for unique stays that are guaranteed to make for a magical experience – a moonlit tent, a treehouse under the stars, or a houseboat on the river. It doesn’t get much more romantic!
When it comes to how you’ll get to your destination, the same logic holds as for booking your accommodation – start looking early, look widely, compare, then decide.
However, if all this booking of flights and accommodation seems too much for you, there is also another convenient option – a package deal. Especially for honeymoons, many travel agents offer all-inclusive deals of flights, hotels, and activities, which take all the weight of planning off your shoulders. All you have to do is just pick your dates and your destination and they’ll take care of the rest. While this may be a little pricier, it is still a great option for those who just want to avoid the hassle entirely.
4. Decide what to do
While your honeymoon doesn’t have to be the trip where you cram in as many activities as you possibly can, you probably want to have a few activities planned before-hand, to get to know the local area a bit more. If you’re looking for good places to eat, drink, and visit, searching your destination on social media or scanning websites like TripAdvisor can give you some popular and well-reviewed recommendations. Beyond what’s online, and especially since it is a special trip, you might want to buy a guide book for your destination. Not only is this practical, it’s also a great souvenir you can keep on your bookshelf of your trip.
On top of this, it’s also a good idea to talk to people. Don’t be shy to ask your friends or colleagues who might have visited for tips, or even call the Embassy or tourist office for your destination to ask for advice.
Once you feel you have enough to do, put together an itinerary of your trip. This doesn’t mean you can’t be spontaneous when you get there, it just means you won’t be stuck with no idea what to do. And if it’s possible, book some of your excursions in advance. Particularly during the tourist season, attractions and activities often fill up or double in price. You don’t want to have to miss out.
But however certain you are of your plans, you can be sure that when you arrive and speak to the locals your plans will change at least a little – they’ll be able to tell you which restaurants and activities are authentic, what the must-see’s are, and what hidden gems you must visit.
5. Sit back, relax, and soak it in
When you’ve taken care of these steps, it’s all done! The time you invested researching and planning will soon be rewarded. Once the chaos and excitement of your wedding day is over, you’ll be relieved to know that a fantastic, fully-planned honeymoon awaits you. All you have to do is pack your bags and get going! During your trip, make sure to relax and soak in every moment of your time together. And don’t forget to take lots of pictures and keep souvenirs – this is truly the trip of a lifetime, you will want to remember it forever yourselves, and document it for your friends, family, and future family.