Picking the Place
It might be very difficult to narrow down the exact right spot for the two of you. What if, for instance, you love the mountains, and she loves the ocean? Or what if you've had your heart set on traveling across Europe while she'd much rather check things out Stateside? Is there any middle ground? Can your honeymoon be saved?!No-Go's
Before you dismiss your fiancée's hatred of hiking and plan a trip to the Rockies, think the entire thing through. Is there a
If she's determined to check out the southwestern United States when you're really shooting for Asia, is it because she has family in the area? Are the two of you always on the lookout for an interesting place to move, and she's been talking about Albuquerque a lot lately?
She may have something in mind when she's suggesting potential honeymoon spots. Before you go ahead and surprise her with a honeymoon she might hate,
Now, if she's looking to spend a week on the slopes and you want to hit the beach, the planning might be a little trickier — but here's where the art of compromise — and picking the right location (like California) — comes into play.
Even if you've already hit every corner of the world, don't feel as though there's nothing special left for the two of you to discover on your honeymoon. You're in a perfect position to re-visit the spot(s) that you found most romantic.
Honeymooners are usually looking for several things in a trip: Sun, romance, relaxation (reading, shopping, spa visits, etc.), adventure (sports, gambling, camping, etc.), culture (museums, shows, etc.). Depending on your personalities, you and your bride-to-be may be looking for one or all of these traits in a destination. Some of the most popular honeymoon sites include:
Of course, anywhere the two of you go will be a honeymoon destination, so don't feel pressured into choosing a place simply because hordes of honeymooners have gone before you. (Don't shy away from a place for that reason, either. Resorts that cater to honeymooners usually know a thing or two about making each couple feel special.) Think about your own wants and needs and go from there — and don't be afraid to use a travel agent.
Communicate. Sounds like a simple enough plan, but some couples have a problem clearly stating their expectations and/or wants, opting for the old, “Oh, whatever you want, Hon,” response — and speaking up only when it's too late. Communication will make your planning infinitely easier (by narrowing the list of choices from the get-go).
Consider whether you're looking to travel a good long distance, or whether you'd like to stick near home. Know what your budget is. Have an idea of what you'd like to do on your honeymoon (Relax? Ski? Swim? Visit museums? Shop? Hit some nightclubs?), as your interests will dictate the location. Are you interested in an all-inclusive tour or resort?
This information should help you eliminate a big chunk of the world; your travel agent can help you choose from the locations that are left.Cutting Corners …
If you've looked at your budget and decided that you can only afford to hit the road if you scale things way back, do so at your own peril, recognizing that traveling standby in the days following your wedding may cost you what precious little sanity you have left at that point.
Jennifer tells the tale of her honeymoon ordeal, which started out in a grand fashion. Her father had given her and her new husband passes to fly anywhere — the catch was that the tickets were only good for standby seating. The newlyweds planned a trip to Hawaii in June, figuring that because they were traveling in the off-season, they would have no problem reaching their destination.
Computer savvy, are you? If you're completely comfortable with booking a trip online, go for it. Some of the best bargains are out there for you to hunt down from the comfort of your ergonomic chair.
Jennifer recalls: “We forgot to figure in all the connections we had to take to get to Hawaii, which ended up being quite full. Our journey ended up consisting of these flights: Buffalo to Chicago. Chicago to San Francisco. San Francisco to Los Angeles. Los Angeles to Honolulu. Honolulu to Maui. And we ended up buying tickets for the last leg of the flight (Los Angeles-Honolulu, Hawaii) because twenty-four hours had passed and we just couldn't take it anymore.
“Not to mention the fact that on the first day of travel, we were running on literally two-and-a-half hours' sleep and had nasty little hangovers, which made my mental state a bit unstable. I burst into hysterical tears after the third Chicago-California flight took off without us on it.” Her suggestion?
“If you're going to cut corners, be mentally prepared for the unexpected. Keep in mind that it may be a little too much to handle after all the wedding stress, and that it might be worth the extra money to go with trusted airlines, accommodations, or resort packages. Even if you
Fortunately for Jennifer and her husband, both of them bounced back from the travel trauma once they were able to settle into their ocean-front digs. If you or your bride is not the type who recovers well from bad travel experiences, plan yourself a foolproof trip instead of looking for creative ways to pay less. In the end, it'll be more than worth it.