With wedding planning as a priority, many couples find themselves wondering how to plan a honeymoon at the same time.
As special as your wedding day will be, don’t forget to dedicate plenty of time to planning your honeymoon! Wedding preparations range from booking a venue to choosing a photographer, which can take significant amounts of time.
However, this doesn’t mean you can wait until the last minute to plan your honeymoon. Just like you’ll need to start making arrangements for your wedding in advance, it’s important to get a jumpstart on honeymoon planning.
When Should You Start Planning Your Honeymoon?
Honeymoon planning often takes a backseat when wedding planning is such a momentous task, but planning early offers a huge advantage. If you start planning early and run into any issues, you’ll have plenty of time to resolve them rather than scrambling to book a room right before your wedding day.
Start planning at least six months in advance. It doesn’t hurt to begin preparing even eight months before your trip.
Although this seems in the distant future, having more time to plan will be essential when it comes to looking for the best deals. Booking a hotel can be tricky during peak seasons.
For example, if you’re having a winter wedding and hoping to unwind on a beach in Mexico, you’ll need to have a reservation months in advance. Exclusive resorts and restaurants will require reservations, and you want to be able to have those spots for the limited days you’ll be relaxing at your honeymoon destination.
For trips out of the country, be sure to renew your passport. This process can take a few weeks. Before leaving, take the time to confirm your reservations and double check that you have all the documents you need to travel.
If you plan on leaving for your honeymoon immediately after your wedding, you may want to pack a few days earlier, so you don’t need to take care of packing right after the excitement and rush of your wedding day.
Honeymoon Planning Tips
Your honeymoon is the perfect time to get away from the hectic nature of wedding planning, and you and your partner can enjoy some time relaxing as newlyweds. Use these tips to make planning your honeymoon easier!
Start Planning Early
As we just mentioned, it’s best to start planning your honeymoon early – ideally at least six months before the trip. The earlier, the better – planning early gives you more time to book, can usually help you get better prices, and ensures that you aren’t trying to plan a honeymoon while also putting together the final touches on your wedding day.
Figure Out Dates
When most people think of a honeymoon, they imagine the happy couple setting off to the airport at the end of their wedding night. Not all couples go on their honeymoon directly after the wedding, however.
Figure out what dates work best for you and your future spouse while planning a honeymoon. Look at work schedules, seasonal and weather-related factors, budgets, and the best time to visit your destination of choice.
Often, couples push their honeymoon to weeks or months after the wedding due to financial reasons. If you’re funding you’re own wedding, you may not have enough money to also book a dream vacation at the same time. There’s nothing wrong with postponing your honeymoon until a later date when you’ve had time to save up a bit more.
Some couples choose to do a small honeymoon in a nearby city or beach town while they save for their real honeymoon. You can even consider planning a honeymoon for your one year anniversary – that way, you can celebrate your first year together in style, and take the year to save for the perfect trip.
No matter how close to your wedding you plan your honeymoon, consider how long your honeymoon should be so that you can schedule your trip.
Set a Budget
Figure out how much you can afford to spend on your honeymoon. Sit down with your partner and try to agree upon what you can responsibly spend in total. Be sure to account for everything from travel costs, hotel accommodations, activities, food and drinks, and any other costs.
If you’re not sure how you’ll afford your honeymoon, consider adding a honeymoon fund to your wedding registry! Some couples choose to forego the traditional department store registry for a honeymoon registry, where wedding guests give gifts like money towards your airfare or pay for specific activities on your trip.
Once you have a budget set, you can start putting that money towards your trip – just be sure to keep an eye on how much your spending and look out for any hidden fees that may affect your budget.
Pick a Destination
When you start planning your honeymoon, one of the first things you’ll likely discuss with your partner is where to visit. There are a variety of top honeymoon destinations, and popular locations include white, sandy beaches in Hawaii or stopping by the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre in Paris, France.
Honeymoons are usually associated with beach trips or tours of Europe, but if these trips aren’t your style, then find another destination that fits. When you’re deciding on a honeymoon destination, think about what you and your partner would enjoy the most.
If you prefer nature and long hikes, consider exploring parts of Alaska or visiting some of the U.S. national parks. Aside from being a honeymoon destination, national parks can also be an innovative and unique wedding venue.
Affordable and fun destinations outside of the United States include Thailand or Costa Rica. Should you choose a popular spring break destination like Costa Rica or Cancun, you may want to consider the timing of your trip. Popular spring break locations may be overrun with rowdy college students.
If you are hoping to stop by Europe, Portugal tends to be more affordable than other European countries. Canada is also an excellent location for a honeymoon trip.
You don’t need to jet away to a foreign country or an exotic location for a honeymoon. If there’s a state or city in the United States that’s been on your bucket list, consider making that your honeymoon destination.
Consider Working with a Honeymoon Planner
With so many online resources, it’s easy to plan a vacation yourself. However, travel agents can be immensely helpful while planning your honeymoon.
Often, travel agents are aware of fantastic deals, and they can find special packages. They also have relationships with hotels and other venues, so if you have a dream location that’s hard to snag, consider asking a travel agent for some help with booking a hotel or resort.
You can take some stress off of you and your partner by hiring a travel agent or honeymoon planner. Since a travel agent should be familiar with your destination as well as packages and activities in the area, you and your partner won’t need to spend as much time researching. Instead, you can focus on planning your wedding.
Even after you’ve started your honeymoon vacation, your travel agent can be a great resource. If there are any delays or complications, some agents are willing to lend a hand to ensure the rest of your trip goes smoothly. For example, if there’s a flight cancellation, you can ask your travel agent to book a new flight.
A travel agent can even help you get started with basic questions. If you aren’t sure where to go for your honey, you can consult a travel agent who will find your dream destination. Although there are fees with hiring a travel agent, you can also save big on special deals while also gaining insider knowledge on hotels, packages, flights, and more.
Book Your Trip
Once you’ve decided on a location, dates, and your budget is set, begin booking the details of your trip. Book travel plans and hotel accommodations first, but don’t forget to book any activities that you need to schedule in advance.
When you’re booking things like hotels, don’t be afraid to call and ask about special deals or packages for newlyweds. Even if you can’t get a special deal, you may get VIP treatment if the hotel knows you’re on your honeymoon. You can also use hotels as a resource and ask to speak to a concierge about local attractions and activities.
During your honeymoon, take time to relax with your spouse! Even if your honeymoon is well after your wedding, this is a great time to decompress and connect with your partner. All-inclusive resorts often have spa packages, so book a couples’ massage or a spa day.
While taking time to relax is essential, make sure you don’t miss any sights your destination has to offer. Whether it’s just wandering around and soaking in the feel and culture of your destination or selecting specific excursions, there are plenty of ways to stay busy.
Feeling adventurous? At some beach resorts, you can find scuba diving, jet skiing, parasailing, and other exciting activities. Other classic honeymoon activities include wine tours or watching sunsets and sunrises on the beach. For an upbeat night, stop by a nightclub and go dancing. If you’re looking for activities specific to your honeymoon destination, search online for local events or ask a travel agent for some recommendations.
There’s no pressure to go out every single day, either. Your honeymoon is also the perfect time to take some down time in your hotel room. You can continue getting to know your partner and spend some quality time with each other before returning to your hectic lives.
Making memories with your spouse is a large part of your honeymoon, so bring a camera and take plenty of pictures! Overall, it’s important to find a balance between downtime and experiencing all that your honeymoon destination has to offer.
Surprise One Another
You should plan your honeymoon with your future spouse – after all, the vacation is for both of you. We love the idea of scheduling a surprise for your significant other, however! Plan a secret, romantic dinner, surprise your new bride with a serenade from local musicians, or find other small ways to surprise one another!
Make your dream honeymoon one to remember and start off your marriage with a romantic special gesture. Communicating your plans with your partner is key, but don’t be afraid to slip in a surprise during your trip. Whether it’s a reservation at a high-end restaurant or an extra spa package, treating you and your partner is a guarantee to make this trip truly special.
With careful planning, your honeymoon can be one of your most memorable trips! Just remember to start the planning process early, set a reasonable budget, and do some research before picking your destination.
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