A practical guide to an amazing honeymoon on any budget

How To Pay For Your Honeymoon

How to Pay for Your Honeymoon

You’ve run the numbers, and you figure out how much your honeymoon is going to cost  including your pre-vacation eyelash extensions and mani-pedi. Awesome! Now how are we paying for this?  

By combining some of the options below you can find ways to cover some or all of the expenses for your big trip, without feeling like you are sacrificing on style or experience.

One of the more recent trends in wedding planning is setting up honeymoon registries. With honeymoon registries, your guests can contribute cash to fund your honeymoon or pay directly for specific experiences (tours, excursions, spa treatments…) for you to enjoy on your trip.  You can even register for that pre-vacation mani-pedi, making it one less expense you have to pay!

Champagne at hotel
Credit Cards Photo by Pexels

If you love to travel or want to splurge for luxury travel experiences from time to time you should consider getting in the credit card hacking game. Effectively what you do is open credit cards with huge bonuses that support your travel goals.  Then you make the minimum spend requirements (usually pretty easy to do if you are planning a wedding concurrently), earn the miles, book your honeymoon travel with those miles, then close the credit card.  Lather, rinse, repeat for various cards and you have a lifetime of free travel ahead for things you were going to purchase anyway. There are lots of great sites out there that break down the nuances of various credit cards, mileage programs, and bonuses. Just make sure the spend amounts, as well as the redemption values, align with where and how you want to travel.

Once you pick a destination sign up for Group On/Living Social or other deal sites for that area. This serves two purposes: you might 1.) find an awesome deal on a tour or day trip you were planning to do at that destination and 2.) learn a little bit more about the destination by understanding what types of activities are available.  Just be sure to read the fine print on the deal before you buy to make sure that the redemption time aligns with your target travel dates.

Find out when the peak /off-peak times are for your target destination and use that to your advantage (talk to a travel agent if you are not sure). The cost of a hotel room can drop by as much as 60% by traveling in March instead of June.

If you are traveling abroad and there is a national airline carrier for that region (e.g. Air New Zealand, Air France, Qantas – Australia, etc…) sign up for that carrier’s promotional emails. For our honeymoon, we saved 50% on our flight to New Zealand by booking during one of their promotions.  Do the same with international hotel brands like Marriott and Hilton.  Hotels have sales too!

Hands on keyboard Photo by CreateHerStock

Book Alternate Accomodations

Lodging tends to be one of my larger expenses when I travel. We aren’t luxury travelers but we aren’t budget travelers either.  Usually, we can save 20-50% off lodging pricing by using host-provided lodging.  Consider sites like Airbnb, HomeAway, VRBO, HouseSwap, etc. for noncommercial accommodations.  Staying in apartments can reduce your dining expenses by allowing you to prepare meals.

look for package deals

Coupling services through one provider can sometimes provide huge savings as opposed to paying separately.  Examples of coupled packages may be tours or meals that can be added to hotel stays, or flight plus hotel packages offered through various airlines and travel websites.  An underutilized resource for vacation packages is Costco and other wholesalers.  After reading this article on Costco Travel, I always use it for finding travel deals.

Sometimes the best solution is the simplest: save money.

There is no statute of limitations on honeymoons.  If you want to take a honeymoon five days or five years after your wedding, it’s your prerogative.  Sometimes postponing your honeymoon can give you the time to save up the necessary money to take the trip of your dreams.  Waiting can also allow economic conditions to change and exchange rates to work in your favor (or against it, as well).  

Set up a separate bank account with automatic contributions from every paycheck. What you can’t see, you won’t spend.  If you and your partner both deposit $2 a day for a year that’s $1,460 and before you know it, that vacation starts to look a lot more realistic.