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How to Plan a Great Honeymoon on a Budget

Then boy and girl (and girl's mother) begin to plan the wedding. They pick out everything from cakes to caterers to flowers to reception halls. Girl's father writes a bunch of checks to pay for it all.

Then boy and girl start to consider their honeymoon. They think about making plans, booking hotels reservations, purchasing airfare, renting a car, and taking care of all the other expenses. But then boy and girl look at their checking accounts. There's not enough money for all this. And no one else is writing checks for their trip.

So what are boy and girl to do? Plan their honeymoon on a budget.

Here are several suggestions for creating a honeymoon if you aren't made of money.

Know what your budget is
Take a hard look at your finances. Consider factors like how much money you are earning, how much credit card debt you think you can handle, and which expenses you will have to incur right after you get married (like finding your own place, for instance). Then come up with an estimated figure for how much you are willing to spend on your honeymoon.

Throughout the process, you may wish to keep a worksheet detailing how much everything on your honeymoon will cost. But it's more than just travel and accommodations. You need to account for everything from passport photos and pet care services to meals, souvenir shopping, and equipment rentals at your destination.

Know how much time you have to spend
Do you want to embark upon a two to three week journey? Or is three to five days long enough for you to relax and enjoy yourselves? If you're on a tight budget, you may want to lean toward a shorter honeymoon – because lodging costs are among the highest charges on any final travel bill. If you still want to lengthen your trip, consider low-cost options like a road trip instead of airfare or relaxing at an in-town resort or hotel.

Don't assume you have to jet off right after you get married
There is no hard and fast rule that a honeymoon has to be taken immediately after your wedding. In fact, it's quite common for couples to delay their honeymoon for several weeks or months after they tie the knot. This approach has the added advantage of allowing you to save up some additional funds which you can enjoy when you finally do go on your honeymoon.

Look at offseason rates
If you have a specific destination in mind, consider waiting until the non-peak travel season to book your reservations. Flights and lodging will likely be less expensive than they would be when everyone else is trying to take their vacations there. If you're not focused on a specific locale, then figure out which travel spots are offering their offseason rates at the time during which you wish to honeymoon. You could potentially save hundreds or even thousands of dollars in airfare and accommodation charges.

Explore the "all-for-one-price" offerings
While it's practically impossible to purchase an entire vacation with one upfront payment, there are options like all-inclusive resorts and cruises which give you great bang for your buck. All-inclusive resorts often offer all of your meals, drinks, and alcoholic beverages for free during your stay. In addition, cruises can not only provide you with all your meals, but also offer numerous onboard entertainment and leisure activities which are all included with the price of your ticket.

Incorporate your honeymoon into your gift registry
This is an attractive option for couples who may already have the traditional items commonly found on wedding registries. If you can plan your honeymoon well in advance of your ceremony date, you may wish to provide your guests with honeymoon gift options such as romantic dinners, couples massages, show tickets, or shore excursions. This will give well-wishers an option to buy you a distinctive gift while reducing the bottom line cost of your honeymoon.

You want to have an enjoyable, rejuvenating, and memorable honeymoon vacation but you don't want to toss yourself into a chasm of debt just as you begin your life together. Making a few minor adjustments to your vacation plans could help you stay within your budget – which will help you feel that much more relaxed during your honeymoon!

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