18 Tips for Saving On Your Honeymoon Costs

Honeymoons can get expensive, so we're sharing some tips and tricks that can save you $$$ without sacrificing the experience.

Honeymoons are sentimental, once-in-a-lifetime experiences. But the costs can add up significantly if you're not careful. Luckily, you don't need a lot of money to have a memorable, romantic honeymoon. You just need to follow a few cost-cutting tips and strategies to enjoy a budget-friendly wedding trip. Below, we'll share 18 ways to save money on your honeymoon costs without compromising on the experience.

Tip # 1: Travel During the Shoulder Season

We don't want to tell you to travel during the off-peak season. There's a good reason why those periods have few people traveling to certain destinations. Undesirable weather conditions can make a destination less appealing during off-peak seasons. However, if a destination has an off-peak season due to other factors, like schools being in session, travel at that time by all means.

But the most ideal time to get a great honeymoon deal is the shoulder season. It's the period between a destination's peak and off-peak seasons. During these periods, the airfare and hotel rates are typically lower. You'll also enjoy a more intimate experience without crowding.

Tip #2: Consider an All-Inclusive Resort Package

Paying for everything upfront might seem expensive at first. However, you can get a better deal this way and stick to your budget. Research all-inclusive packages for your ideal honeymoon destinations. For a set price, they include almost everything you'll want during your stay, such as accommodations, meals, and activities.

Tip #3: Use a Travel Company

Booking with a travel agency is another way to combine costs and save money. They can offer package deals that include airfare, hotel, and rental car for discounted rates. But ensure you score a deal with an overall cost lower than booking each component separately.

Additionally, you can check for honeymoon packages or deals specifically for newlyweds from different resorts or cruise lines. Most businesses offer special promotions or added amenities to give you a quality experience. Grab those offers, but evaluate them carefully.

Tip #4: Book Accommodations via Vacation Rental Sites Like VRBO

Accommodation is one of the most costly honeymoon expenses, especially for longer stays. So, instead of staying in a traditional hotel, consider booking through vacation rental sites. These can be more affordable and intimate. They also come with amenities like kitchens, which means you can cook some meals and reduce your food costs significantly.

Tip #5: Create a Honeymoon Registry or Use a Crowdfunding Platform

You may not want to burden anyone with your honeymoon costs, but you'll be surprised by how many of your friends and family are happy to contribute towards your dream honeymoon as a wedding gift. This can be especially workable if you don't need most of the common gifts people receive on their special day.

Tip #6: Take Advantage of Free Activities and Attractions

There will always be free or cheap activities and attractions in most destinations. These might include hiking trails, public parks, and free museum days. So, research the local area thoroughly to know what you can take advantage of while there. Use these activities as complimentary experiences to explore the region on a budget.

Tip #7: Consider a Domestic or Local Honeymoon Destination

You don't have to travel outside the country to enjoy an unforgettable honeymoon. Instead, you can find local hidden gems and lesser-known romantic spots. This way, you'll discover domestic destinations and still have a memorable trip. Most importantly, you can save money on airfare and transportation.

Tip #8: Book Your Flight Strategically

Do you know that you can fly at a discounted cost if you travel on less popular travel days like Tuesdays or Wednesdays? This is also the case if you choose early mornings or late nights. These off-peak days and times are significantly cheaper than the busier ones.

Tip #9: Choose a Less-Popular Destination

Destination is everything when it comes to reducing costs. Celebrity and hotspot locations will not make your list if you want to save on honeymoon expenses. They come at a premium price due to the demand and perception. Your best solution is to opt for less-popular places. This will help you avoid inflated costs for hotels, activities, and more.

Tip #10: Use Credit Card Rewards Points

Don't let all the purchases you make, especially during the wedding planning, go to waste. Start earning points on a rewards credit card as you pay for wedding expenses. By the time you're going on the honeymoon, you'll most likely have significant points that you can redeem for free or discounted travel.

Also, you can get bonus points with airline and hotel-branded cards. They often offer these rewards for simply signing up and meeting specific spending requirements. So, if you don't have a travel rewards credit card, consider applying for one.

Tip #11: Use Mass Transit

When you get to your honeymoon destination, taking public transport can help you save further. Mass transit options like buses and trains are often less expensive ways to get around. Besides being budget-friendly, bus or train rides allow you to experience the local culture. You can even discover hidden gems around your destination this way.

Tip #12: Chat with Locals

How do you know when you're overpaying for foodstuffs and other touristy items? The locals can help you out. Talk with them when moving around your honeymoon destination. They can also tell you about budget-friendly experiences, cool neighborhoods, happy hours, events, discount days for museums or attractions, and more.

Tip #13: Beware of Big Events

Find out if there are major events or festivals in your chosen destination at the time you travel. Also, beware of big conferences or holidays. Such events often cause a surge in hotel rates and airfare. Prices of other general items can skyrocket as well. This is due to an influx of visitors and increased demand. So, research and avoid those days or seasons if possible.

Tip #14: Avoid Remote Destinations

Hard-to-reach locations typically have a higher cost attached. Such destinations, such as an exotic private island, may sound dreamy but often have fewer flights. As a result, the airlines charge a premium to get you there. Even driving several hours from a major airport can mean spending a lot on expensive gas, meals, and overnight stays en route. Additionally, items in that location may have higher price points due to importing costs.

Instead, opt for accessible honeymoon spots with convenient transportation. This way, you can anticipate the costs and have options.

Tip #15: Go on a Mini-moon

When there are budget constraints, opt for a mini-moon. It's a shorter and more cost-effective getaway. Typically, it should be close to home and offer quality time for newlyweds. Ideally, mini-moons last a few nights. You could choose a cozy cabin in the mountains or a relaxing beach town. a mini-moon can also take the pressure off trying to plan a complicated, expensive honeymoon after a wedding.

But it doesn't have to be the end. Most couples enjoy the newlywed experience. After a few months or a year, they travel to more dreamy locations when they've saved up for it.

Tip #16: Go Incognito

When you're researching destinations and other travel-related things, use private mode to browse websites. The Chrome web browser has an incognito mode that doesn't track your web history. Switch to that window when searching online.

If you use the regular browsing mode, various factors might work against you and cause you to be overcharged. These include your browsing history, location data, operating system, and even the type of device used. They can all impact the prices you see for the same travel itineraries and accommodations. That's because companies often capitalize on seemingly affluent or motivated customers.

Tip #17: Mention You're Newlyweds

Don't be shy to say you're shopping around for honeymoon experiences as newlyweds. This applies to different items you'll need, such as travel and accommodations. Many hotels, resorts, airlines, and travel providers offer special packages, discounts, or amenities for honeymooning couples.

For instance, resorts can offer extras like couples' massages, candlelit dinners, room upgrades, or Champagne and chocolates upon arrival. On the other hand, airlines may extend discounted airfare, bonus miles, or the ability to reserve premium seats for newlyweds. But remember there's no guarantee of a special deal just because you've mentioned your wedding, so don't feel bad if that doesn't happen.

Tip #18: Volunteer Honeymoon

If you're more adventurous, try volunteering. This can allow you to mix your honeymoon with giving back to a different community. Some organizations have volunteer programs around the world. For instance, you can teach English or work on various local projects. It can be a rewarding way to create an unforgettable experience while making a positive impact.

Wrapping Up

As you can see, there are endless creative ways to save money on your honeymoon costs. Whether you're flexible on the destination or taking advantage of free activities and attractions, you won't lack strategies to enjoy and make memories. You might even have more of an unforgettable experience on budget-friendly adventures or trips than overpriced destinations. 

Cover photo: Oleksandr P; Photo 1: RDNE Stock project; Photo 2: RDNE Stock project

Written by Starr Savoy: Starr Savoy is a graduate of the University of Louisville who received a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications. She is currently a Producer for Dotdash Meredith. She has published work in Instyle, PEOPLE, Byrdie, US Sun, ELLE, PREME Magazine, The Zoe Report, EBONY Magazine, and WWD. Formerly, Savoy worked at ELLE.com as a fellow. 

Before her fellowship, she worked in editorial/social media marketing intern positions at EBONY Magazine, Louisville Magazine, and Louisville Scoop. While at the University of Louisville, she worked as a feature writer for the Louisville Cardinal newspaper. 

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