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How To Save Money on a Honeymoon: Cutting Costs, Not Quality

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If you’re looking to save money on your honeymoon, you’ll want to read these savvy tips. Learn how to make the most of your honeymoon budget!


Shifting economic tides may threaten your salary, retirement savings, and grocery bill, but they might not be coming for your honeymoon just yet. The current average honeymoon cost of $5,000 can be intimidating to many, but fortunately, there is a lot you can do to significantly undercut that bill.

Your honeymoon will not be the only treasured vacation of your marriage, but it will be the first. So, naturally, you want it to feel magical and memorable. The great news is that there is plenty you can do to plan a beautiful trip that doesn’t leave your savings in shambles.

Make Strategic Choices Upfront

The first and most significant way you can save money on your honeymoon lies in your early decisions about what that honeymoon is. Where will you go? When will you go there, and for how long? What do you plan to do while you’re there?

Coming in below the $5,000 average honeymoon cost for US couples takes some strategy.

Five days at a lake house a few hours away will be much cheaper than a two-week, multi-country tour of another continent. Of course, these are equally valid options, but the decisions you make at this stage will have a much more significant impact on your cost than anything you can do once the plan is in motion.

If you are planning a more extended honeymoon, consider taking it during a time that will be cheaper to travel. For example, avoiding peak summer tourism, school breaks, and location-specific peak times can slash travel and accommodation costs. The same goes for days of the week — it’s usually better to avoid weekend flights if you can. 

Location will likely have just as much impact as timing. Where you choose will affect the costs of your flights, lodging, food, local transport, and more. If you are more interested in the feel of a particular place than the location itself, there is likely a similar but less well-known destination that could help you save big.

Prioritize and Compromise

One budget tip for honeymoons that extends to wedding planning, in general, is to decide on a few priorities. Of all the things you could spend extra money on, which are the most important to you and your partner?

When you can choose between first-class flights, luxury resort stays, spa treatments, top-tier food, memorable activities, and more, maxing out on everything would quickly wipe out most couples’ honeymoon budgets.

Instead, talk to your partner about what each of you considers most important to a magical honeymoon. Then, pick a few things to splurge on and use that as your motivation to save money on the other stuff.

If a red-eye flight and some free outdoor activities give you room in your budget for multiple Michelin-star meals, that might be a road worth taking. Or, a few nights in a modest hotel may be the road you take to spending the last two nights of the trip luxuriating in a four-star room with fluffy robes and top-notch room service.

Use The Tools at Your Disposal

Once you’ve done all the foundational steps to build a perfect and low-cost honeymoon, you can still do a lot leading up to the trip to drive down the final bill even further. 

Credit card points and travel miles are one great resource for helping to fund your first marital adventure. Some cards offer hundreds of dollars in sign-up bonuses, which could be cash in your pocket to take a big bite out of expenses. Travel cards also often provide access to discounts on flights and hotels, concierge services, and more.

Consider what you can bring from home to cut unnecessary costs while on the trip. For example, packing a mix of snacks, essential toiletries, first aid, etc., can save you from overpaying for these same products in a gift shop, convenience store, or airport newsstand.

One unexpectedly helpful tip for honeymooners is to let people know you’re on your honeymoon. People love to celebrate love, and you will be surprised what can come from vocalizing it. As a result, sharing your exciting news could lead to free flight upgrades, bottles of champagne, and complimentary desserts wherever you go! 

Kicking off Your New Partnership in Style and Savings

A honeymoon is many things. It is a much-needed vacation for two people who have likely spent a year or more planning one of the largest events of their life, their wedding. It is also a celebration of their newly forged union, potentially the first beautiful memory of this new stage of their lives.

One thing a honeymoon should not be is a stressful event that swallows up a new family’s savings and leaves them grasping for cash. Fortunately, with a little bit of strategy and a few tools, yours doesn’t have to be. With the right attention to your budget, your honeymoon can be a beautiful and peaceful celebration to kick off your new marriage. 

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Sam is the creator of the personal development blog Smarter and Harder. His mission is to start exciting new conversations that empower people to improve their work, lives, and money, and have fun doing it. In all things, he strives to lead with positivity, understanding, and more than a bit of enthusiasm.