Ahhh, the thought of the island breeze, endless pina coladas and spending quality time as newlyweds at your honeymoon… can’t wait, right? Before you close your eyes and wish you that you could be there with the snap of a finger, read our guide to honeymoon planning first. You’ll see that for a relaxing honeymoon, there is quite a bit of planning involved and the sooner you start (we recommend about 10 months in advance), the more relaxing your honeymoon can be!
We’ve broken it down for you based on a timeline of when to take care of what to make things a bit easier for you. Follow this guide to get that romantic honeymoon escape well on its way!
8-12 Months Before
This is when you’ll figure out the basics like your budget, where to go, what to do and start the planning process.
- Decide on a honeymoon budget: this will narrow down the choices of places you can travel to. The average honeymoon budget ranges around $4,000-$5,000.
- Share your fantasies with one another. Everyone vacations differently and while you may be hoping to hop from one European city to the next, your spouse may want to do nothing but relax at the beach. It’s important to come to an agreement on activities and how you want to spend your honeymoon so that you can both enjoy your honeymoon.
- Pick a place! Whether you come to an agreement and pick a place on your own or with the help of a travel agent, deciding where to go will let you get into the fun stuff.
- Book your plane tickets. The earlier you book your plane tickets, the cheaper they will be and the likelihood of scoring direct flights will be higher. Especially if you plan to use your frequent flyer miles, booking in advance will help you guarantee your seats on the plane.
- Book your hotel. Reserve a room. Tip: let them know it’s your honeymoon! They may have special packages or offers that’ll make your stay extra romantic. Also, you can get a better rate if you use specialized websites to book your trip. For example, the best Bora Bora hotels can be booked within minutes from one site, so that you will save money and time.
- Reserve a rental car. If you think you’ll need a rental car during your trip, call ahead an reserve your rental in advance. When using a travel agent or websites like Priceline, they offer bundles that can help you save money if you book hotel, car and flight together.
6 Months Before
You’ve gotten the big things out of the way and you know where you’re going. Six months before the honeymoon, there are still a few things you should do to ensure your travel plans are set.
- Get or renew your passport. Wouldn’t that be a shame if you got left behind because your passport expired? Don’t let that happen to you! Also, if you need a visa for the country you’re visiting, apply for it now.
- Get vaccinated (if necessary). Talk to your travel agent and see if the country you’re traveling to requires a vaccination.
- Purchase travel insurance. When everything is set but a hurricane comes to ruin all your plans, it won’t be fun. This step may seem unnecessary but it’s better to be safe than sorry, especially $5,000 sorry.
- Make reservations. Whether it’s reservations to a Michelin rated restaurant you’ve been dying to try or surf lessons, spots quickly fill up at popular vacation destinations so secure your spot by reserving now.
2-3 Months Before
- Start making plans! Look into different activities the city offers. Maybe there is a rainforest hike or noteworthy museums, either way start discussing plans with your significant other to make a list of places you want to see, things you want to do and where you want to eat.
- Buy a camera and luggage. If you don’t already have these, make sure you purchase these travel essentials.
1 Month Before
- Finalize and reconfirm reservations: your flight tickets, car rental, hotel room
- Start your packing/shopping list. Bikini, sunglasses, comfortable shoes for sightseeing, hats, new clothes… you get the gist.
- Contact a pet sitter. Make sure your furry family member will be taken care of while you two are away.
- Refill any prescriptions.
2 Weeks Before
If you’ve done everything in the checklist up until now, most of your plans should be set in stone. Now it’s just time for the nitty gritty, but nothing too bad.
- Make sure you have all your documents. Your plane tickets, passports, visas, international driving permit, and copies of your documents (just in case).
- Exchange money for local currency. You may be able to use your credit card in the country you’re traveling to, but it’s always nice to have some cash before you get there so you can at least pay for transportation from the airport to hotel and pay for your first meal. $200 should be a good, safe amount.
- Call your credit card company. Let them know you’ll be traveling so they don’t block your card from use.
- Make arrangements for your mail. Either have your post office hold it or ask someone you trust to pick it up for you.
- Start packing. If it’s winter where you live but you’re traveling to Jamaica, chances are you won’t need any of your summer clothes, bikini or flip flops. Getting a head start on packing can eliminate stress days before you leave.
2-3 Days Before
- Check the weather. You may need to throw in a sweater.
- Reconfirm flights and hotel.
- Make ride arrangements to and from the airport.
- Pack a carryon with any essential items. There’s nothing that’ll ruin your trip like your luggage getting lost. Make sure you have your basics in a carryon so you can still enjoy your time in case your luggage takes a few extra days to get there.
- Order champagne to your hotel room so that you can have some bubbly awaiting your arrival.
1 Day Before
- Check your flight for any changes.
- Make sure you’ve packed everything.
- Prepare yourself mentally for the time of your lives!
With this 12 month honeymoon planning guide, you should be set to have the honeymoon of your dreams! At the end of the day, this is a time for you and your new spouse to enjoy some R&R however you decide to do it, so breathe, relax and have fun!