A honeymoon vacation can range from beach-going to sightseeing to road trips.
There are many details that go into planning a perfect honeymoon vacation that fits the couples personalities and budget. Honeymooners must first determine how much they plan to spend and how long they intend to stay away. The newlyweds must also pick a destination that is ideal, whether that is sun bathing on a secluded beach, exploring the architecture of ancient Rome, cruising the ocean on a massive ship or the exhilaration of an African safari. The time of year is also a large determining factor in the honeymoon location.
Before a couple makes a determination on the type of honeymoon they plan to have, they need to know what their budget will allow. According to Forbes, the average honeymoon cost $5,111 in 2006, nearly three times that spent by other travelers. Of course, the actual cost of a honeymoon varies by a couples budget, destination and vacation length.
A honeymoon registry is a great way for couples who have limited budgets to get the honeymoon of their dreams. This is also a good option for couples who do not need as many household items because they are getting married later in life. Most guests access gift registries to find out exactly what a couple wants for their new home. A honeymoon registry works in the same way, except that wedding guests purchase portions of the honeymoon vacation package. Resorts, such as Marriot and Disney, offer this option. For other destinations, Web sites like Honeymoon Wishes allow couples to register for specific portions of their honeymoon experience, such as admission to tourist attractions, a strawberries and champagne welcome at the hotel or general monetary contributions. Additionally, as an alternative to thank you notes, honeymooners can send vacation postcards to contributing friends and family.
The new husband and wife should be on the same page regarding honeymoon vacation activities, so it is important that they discuss those in advance. Couples should determine if they want rest and relaxation, culture, adventure or an agreeable combination. According to Martha Stewart the following decisions should be a part of the planning process:
Vacation packages, all-inclusive reports and cruises require paying more upfront, but make it easier to stick to a budget. Couples looking for seclusion and rest should consider a beach destination. An option for couples that are always on the go would be an adventure honeymoon vacation, such as whitewater rafting or a safari. Of course, there are also cultural destinations, such as Ireland, Venice, Paris or other family ancestral origins.
The Knot provides insight for couples who still have trouble determining where to spend their first married days, including descriptions of various destinations and what type of person might find those places appealing. Martha Stewart recommends the bride and groom each write a list of their five dream destinations and, if a destination is duplicated between them, then it lends for a good place to start exploring options.
When choosing a destination, couples should consider whether their honeymoon will fall during the peak or off-season. For example, one of the more popular honeymoon destinations in the summer is the Caribbean or Mexico. However, couples that wait and go in the fall can save nearly half of the cost from the peak summer months. Prices are lower to Europe during the less popular summer and winter months. Switzerland will provide more value for the dollar than other European locations.
For couples concerned about the time of year, The Knot offers the following list of romantic honeymoon vacation spots by month:
If romance is a priority, there are many destinations to choose from. While locations like New York City and San Francisco may sound crowded, there are plenty of spots for couples to have romantic moments alone, such as a picnic in Central Park or a romantic drive along Inspiration Point. The castles and beautiful landscape of Prague offer a fairytale-like atmosphere. The picturesque waterfalls and tropical scenery of Honolulu will take anyone's breath away. Barcelona offers magnificent architecture. Of course, there are gondola rides in Venice and the awe-inspiring City of Lights (Paris).
For the adventure-seeking couple, a road trip in the Himalayas from Tibet to Nepal ranks among the most adventurous honeymoon options. If the Himalayas or safari are too much, audacious couples might consider climbing Mt. Fuji in Tokyo or hiking in the ancient ruins in Cambodia. Costa Rica offers a great combination of a relaxing beach and bold rainforest tours.
A popular trend for couples is to take a honeymoon several weeks long and visit various locations, such as hopping from Thailand to Cambodia and then Vietnam; or taking a tour of the various sites in Europe, such as London, Paris and Rome.
Of course, locations with lots of sun, beach and water always poll as the most popular, by far. A poll conducted in 2006 by Conde Naste revealed that 33 percent of honeymooners went to the Caribbean. A close second are cruises, chosen by 20 percent of newlyweds.