AT PDM we’re happy to help our clients with all kinds of travel arrangements – but one of our favourite jobs is helping to arrange a honeymoon. Here is our guide to organising the perfect post nuptial getaway.
John Steinbeck said: “A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it.” But making honeymoon decisions doesn’t have to be stressful – you’ve already worried about choosing the perfect dress and agonised over the seating arrangements – planning the honeymoon should be a treat.
First of all, you need to sit down together and decide what kind of honeymoon you want. Take time to sit down and talk about your dream trip. Do you want a beach holiday where relaxation is the only thing on the menu? Do you want to explore a city together, or spend your first weeks of married life learning to scuba dive? It’s entirely up to you, but experts agree it is a good idea to choose a place that neither of you have visited before, so you can discover a destination for yourselves, and create your own story there.
So where to go? Some people know where they want to go for their honeymoon even before they knew who they would marry. If you’re still in the deliberating stage, here’s what the experts say. In a recent survey by Modern Bride, Hawaii held on to its number one spot on the list of top 10 overall destinations for the ninth year in a row. Italy followed in second place, while Tahiti’s beaches earned it the number three spot. The Caribbean is currently fashionable, with Anguilla, St. Barths, Jamaica and St. Lucia all in the top 10. Fiji, Mexico and France were also popular among those surveyed, and the major honeymoon cities are Paris, Venice, Honolulu, San Francisco and Sydney. Then there’s the unspoilt natural beauty of Mauritius, the Seychelles, offering immaculate, uncrowded powder-soft white sandy beaches, the romantic atmosphere of Barbados, the Maldives, famous for its beautiful beaches and breathtaking underwater scenery, Thailand’s intriguing culture and glorious sun-soaked beaches, or the increasingly popular Dubai.
If you yearn to spend time with your honey in one of these destinations, but have a limited budget, fear not – there are ways to save on some of these ever-popular honeymoon spots.
Honeymooning just before or just after the destination’s high season yields significant savings on hotels, and you’re likely to receive more attention and more upgrades when the crowds are thinner. In the Caribbean, hotels may charge up to 40 per cent less outside of the mid-December to mid-April high season. Also consider travel packages that include airfare, lodging and car rentals, which are often more economical than purchasing the components separately. Packages can be particularly attractive for expensive destinations like Hawaii and Tahiti. And look out for boutique hotels, which can be an affordable alternative to luxury resorts, also having the bonus of providing an intimate, unique atmosphere.
Don’t be shy about your newlywed status – it’s a great way to get upgraded. Make sure you tell your travel agent and the hotel staff that you’re honeymooners – you never know when you’re going to run into somebody who wants to make things extra special for you. However, exercising some caution with honeymoon hotel packages is a good idea. Sometimes the honeymoon extras – often in essence a bottle of champagne and a red rose – are not worth the extra price of the honeymoon suite.
And a final word on ensuring your honeymoon and your honey are happy? Try to remember that marriage and travel are all about communication and compromise!