No matter how special your wedding day will be, chances are you’re looking forward to your honeymoon more. It’ll be your first trip as a married couple and the ultimate relaxation after months—or years—of wedding planning.
But planning a honeymoon trip isn’t as easy as it sounds. You won’t simply pick a destination, book your flight, and go. In fact, honeymoon planning is almost no different from wedding planning. It’s guaranteed to give you headaches, too.
Thankfully, you can avoid most of the stress if you know what to expect. So here are the highs and lows of honeymoon planning to remember:
1. Starting Late Will Make Planning Harder
If you and your spouse-to-be haven’t gone abroad together yet, start planning your trip as early as possible—ideally, six to eight months before your desired travel date. Try to plan it even earlier if your trip will fall on a peak season. If you’re going somewhere in Asia, China, Mongolia, Japan, and South Korea have the best weather during spring and fall, so most travelers flock to those countries around those times. If you’re going to Southeast Asia, summer is their peak season, given their pristine beaches.
Because honeymoons also take a while to plan, it will probably coincide during your wedding planning. That’s why some couples opt to have their honeymoon a bit later in their marriage. But if budget permits, plan your honeymoon at the same time as your wedding. It will be incredible to travel while you still have the wedding high.
2. Choosing a Destination Can Be Both Fun and Stressful
Choosing a destination is one of the most exciting parts of honeymoon planning. If you and your spouse-to-be have the same preferences for traveling, you can easily pick a destination. Maybe you’re both adventurous, and something like a Mongolia tour will suit your tastes. You can explore Mongolia’s nomadic areas and interact with the locals. You won’t be sleeping in a five-star hotel, but in hostels or tents that might not be the most comfortable, but the most thrilling.
If you don’t have the same traveling preferences, picking a destination can stress you out. Maybe you like backpacking trips, and your partner prefers luxurious tours. This is why it’s best to plan your honeymoon early. It gives you the time to settle your differences and decide which one of you will compromise.
3. A Travel Agent Helps
Today’s travel culture is all about DIY and backpacking, but that might not work so well on a honeymoon. Unless, of course, you and your spouse-to-be have tons of DIY travel experiences. But otherwise, it’s advisable to get a travel agent. They have access to discounts and deals that hotels might not offer to travelers.
Think of your travel agent as someone like your wedding planner. They also handle the logistics, the paperwork, and all the research. As such, you can focus on your wedding or planning your honeymoon OOTDs.
4. You Need to Budget Cautiously
Since the honeymoon planning should coincide with the wedding planning, you might encounter budgeting issues. Chances are your wedding expenses ran higher than you expected. As such, you’ll be tempted to shell out some of your honeymoon budget. But before doing that, discern which between the wedding and the honeymoon you’d really like to invest in. Weddings only last six to eight hours, while honeymoons can last from a week to a fortnight. However, weddings create lifelong memories, like honeymoons. So decide which of the two is more important to you before changing your budget plans.
5. You Might Fight During Your Honeymoon
If you and your spouse-to-be have already traveled together, you’ve probably fought during one of your trips. If your honeymoon is your first trip, expect some ups and downs. Couples typically fight while traveling. It’s not going to end your relationship, but it can create unwelcome tension.
Don’t panic if it happens to you. Even happy couples fight while traveling. When you’re both exhausted, overwhelmed in a new territory, and eating food you’re not used to, your mood can go down. As a result, you easily snap, even more so if you’re jet-lagged as well. So try to keep your cool during your trip; if one of you is already grumpy, the other should stay calm. Both of you can’t be grumpy at the same time, as it can affect the rest of your itinerary.
Despite the many highs and lows of a honeymoon and its planning, it’s still one of the best experiences you’ll ever have in your life. Don’t focus on what can go wrong; just enjoy every step. It’s a celebration of your marriage, so don’t let it go sour.