The Thrifty Wedding: 13 Ways to Save on Your Honeymoon

This is a series focused on how any couple headed to the altar can find ways to cut back on spending without sacrificing their vision. This is the last post in this series, but you can read previous posts here.

We've covered a lot of ways you can save money on your wedding. Here are thirteen ways you can save on your honeymoon.

1.Go in "shoulder" seasons. Every destination has a peak and off-peak season. The off-peak season usually is off-peak because the weather isn't great, like Boston in the winter. However, there are "shoulder" seasons, which are seasons on the cusp of the off-peak and peak seasons. For Europe that means mid-late spring and early fall (April/May and September/October). Flights and hotels are more reasonably priced during these times. As a bonus, your destination won't be packed with tourists like it would in the peak season.

2. Fly during off-peak days and/or times. Flights are most expensive on Sundays. So if you're getting married on a Saturday, you may want to leave the next day, but if you do, your flight will be more expensive. The cheapest days of the week to fly are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. If you delay your honeymoon by just a few days until Tuesday, you can save some money on your flight. In addition, flying at less desirable hours, will also save you money. The cheapest times of day to fly are 5 - 7 a.m. or after 8 p.m.

3. Skip the flights and choose a driving destination. You'll save plenty of money if you choose to drive to your destination. For instance, Montreal is a five hour drive from Boston, and Toronto is an eight hour drive. If you want to go somewhere further away, you can make part of your honeymoon a road trip and drive down to Florida, for example.

4. Go to a less well-known or popular destination. More popular and well-known destinations are more expensive to fly to, as well as more expensive to stay in. For example Hawaii is a very popular honeymoon destination, but that also makes it more expensive. But if you still want an island experience, the Florida Keys are less popular and less expensive. If you're thinking about going to a Greek island, skip the more popular Santorini, and look into the island of Corfu, which has a similar experience.

5. Use Credit Card Miles/Cash Back. If you've been using a rewards credit card for all of your wedding items (and you should), cash in those rewards to reduce the cost of your honeymoon. 

6. Get a hotel or airbnb with a kitchen. Dining out for every meal can add a lot of extra expense to your trip. If you can cook a few of your meals and have a romantic dinner, you'll save a lot of money, and add something more intimate to your experience.

7. Look into honeymoon packages at your hotel. Some honeymoon packages will save you money, like six nights for the price of five. However, some packages might bring an evening rose petal turndown services with champagne for an extra $200. Don't fall for it; instead, you could buy yourself a bottle and celebrate over saving money.

8. Tell everyone you're going on your honeymoon. Hotels and other businesses know that honeymoons have sentimental value for couples. If a couple had a great time on their honeymoon, they're more likely to think back on that trip with fondness, and do it again. This means mentioning you're going on your honeymoon can bring in some extra value to your trip, like complimentary room and airplane seat upgrades.

9. Set up a honeymoon fund on your registry. Many couples set up cash funds on their wedding registry for people to donate directly to their honeymoon. Especially if you don't need new household items, this can be a great way for your guests to contribute without getting a bunch of stuff you don't need or have space for. You can even customize it so your guests can contribute towards a couples massage, or scuba lessons.

10. Make it a shorter trip. The average honeymoon is eight days. If you're not sure you can or should afford a trip that long, make it shorter. You and your partner could still enjoy your honeymoon destination in four or five days. It will still let you have a nice break, without the cost of a typical honeymoon.

11. Chose your hotel wisely. Consider what your trip will entail before you book your rooms. For example, if you plan to spend most of your time on the hotel property engaging in fun activities, then it might make sense to get a room at a luxurious hotel. But, if you don’t plan to be at the hotel that much, you can book a cheaper hotel that will still satisfy your needs, but won't cost as much.

12. Postpone your honeymoon. If the funds just aren't there after the wedding, consider doing your honeymoon on your six month or one year anniversary. It will give your wallets time to recover, and give you a special way to celebrate a milestone in your marriage.

13. Research your destination. Before you book anything for your trip, make sure you know what you're getting into. For example, if you aren't interested in spending multiple days exploring a city, research what attractions you can access that are farther away. Knowing this in advance will help you budget more appropriately for the costs of attractions, and find ways you can save money, like taking public transportation, or finding cheaper areas to stay in that are still close to the action. Check out our travel book selections to help you get started.

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