After months of sometimes stressful wedding planning and preparations, the honeymoon is for many couples a chance for a much-needed break. Still, having to do honeymoon planning on top of your wedding planning can easily get overwhelming.
Thus, at Wedding and Function, we have endeavoured to find you handy tips that can save you the stresses of honeymoon planning. After all, your honeymoon is supposed to be your trip of a lifetime as a couple.
If you are not planning to honeymoon abroad, check out some of our wonderful local honeymoon destinations at Home, Food & Travel. Honeymooning locally is actually not a bad idea since one will not need to save up a lot of leave days from, which they might still lose transiting to a faraway honeymoon destination.
Deal-seeking honeymooners in South Africa, visit Bargain Buys for amazing savings on your accommodation, restaurants, spas, activities and adventures.
10 do’s and don’ts of honeymoon planning
If you want your honeymoon planning to be stress-free and budget-friendly, here are some do’s and don’ts.
- Start searching for and book your honeymoon early
If you were wondering when is the right time to start looking or to book a honeymoon – the answer is the earlier the better. As soon as you get engaged, you should start thinking about where you want to honeymoon. Ideally, you want to get your honeymoon sorted six to eight months prior to your date of departure.
This also ensures you have enough time for a change-of-plan if anything were to happen. Booking way ahead of time often also means you book at good rates when space is available especially if you’re planning to go to an exclusive resort. Planning in time also means you get your documentation (passports and visas) and vaccinations (if going into Africa) in order.
- Budget for the honeymoon
It’s advisable that you both work together on the honeymoon planning so that every person’s needs are catered for and within budget. Discuss what you are looking for – adventure, relaxation, touring? Remember that while a wedding ceremony typically lasts six hours, a typical honeymoon is up to two weeks or more!
Thus, it is important that you have a proper budget for the honeymoon or you will end up hating your experience. Many resorts offer all-inclusive honeymoon packages – so you know ahead of time exactly how much you should budget. However, typical honeymoon expenses are flights, car hire, accommodation, travel insurance, visas and for activities.
- Beware of hidden costs
Make sure you understand what is included in the cost of your bookings. For example, if you’re going to honeymoon at a remote island, does the hotel rate include transportation to and from the airport? Unexpected fees, such as a resort fee or baggage fees, deposits and credit card holds can put added stress on a vacationing couple – do your due diligence.
- Use a travel agent if you require guidance
Consider talking to your travel agent if you want extra guidance planning your honeymoon. They can save you endless research time and a penny as they often have insider knowledge on destinations, fees, honeymoon packages, deals and discounts since they enjoy relationships with hoteliers, airlines and activity offerings.
If you miss a flight or get stuck somewhere, your travel agent will always try to help you out – their job is not complete until you have returned home.
- Consider going on your honeymoon off – season
Most newly-weds perhaps do not know this; but you do not have to go on a honeymoon immediately after the wedding. Yes, you can go on a local ‘mini-honeymoon’ and on your lengthy honeymoon when everything is in order. Again, deal-seeking honeymooners in South Africa, visit Bargain Buys for amazing savings on your accommodation, restaurants, spas, activities and adventures.
Not going on a honeymoon soon after the wedding means you can book at destinations during the off season – or the ‘shoulder season’ as it’s called in the travel industry, when rates are always cheaper. That’s especially true for popular honeymoon destinations like the Caribbean, Maldives or Africa.
- Sample the culture of your honeymoon destination
While planning your vacation to an exotic region, it’s advisable to sample that country’s culture, environment and foods at a local restaurant or on TV. You don’t want to arrive in a country and then suddenly realise that what you thought you would find is totally different from what is there in reality.
If you get a chance, you can find out from those that vacationed there previously about their experiences.
- On your travels
Experts advise that you use your maiden name while on your bookings as you might not have time to change your name if you are going to leave soon after the wedding. Stick to what is still on your passport and personal documents. Perhaps a no-brainer, but still do make time for yourselves; don’t commit to too many activities, you can always go exploring on another trip. The honeymoon is your free time!
While you may be excited about your wedding ring, but it might be a good idea to take it off especially when going on adventures. Losing it just days after your wedding can spoil the whole honeymoon!
For ease of communication with your hotel and activities, use one phone number or email address. The hotels and resorts will be able to contact you directly should there be any problems. Again a no-brainer, take more spending money than you think you might need – you don’t want that awkward ‘do we still have enough money’ conversation on your honeymoon.
- Talk about your honeymoon
Without going over the top, tell everyone, who will listen, that it’s your honeymoon. You will find that man hotels, restaurants and activities offerings will gladly indulge a happy couple with anything from complimentary champagne to discounts on activities.
By the way, booking a honeymoon suite, as opposed to just a normal room, offers a host of benefits tailored to be ‘romantic’. You often get a private room with extra amenities and spectacular views – just because you are honeymooning!
- Get a list of the important numbers
If you are visiting a new country or region, it’s important you have a list of important contact numbers. Know the local police, ambulance and other emergency numbers. Also have your credit card company or bank’s numbers so you can quickly call if there are any problems. Again if travelling to a new country, you should know the location of your country’s embassy or consulate – just in case!
- Confirm everything!
It’s probably an obvious one, but before you leave for your honeymoon, confirm again that everything is still in order with your hotel/s, restaurants and other places. Things could have changed since the last time you spoke. Remember some things do need to be booked in advance like private dinners on the beach; couples massages, breakfast in bed. Check the weather; has everything been packed including your phone chargers; GoPros; and foreign currency?
Your honeymoon is your first step into life as a married couple. We hope this guide on honeymoon planning has helped you – wishing you all the best!
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