So, with the ending of The Nuptial Series, we shall now see the birth of The Honeymoon Series, an essentiality after the wedding, for us to spend some quality time with each other without the interference of work or family.
Here's Part 1 of The Honeymoon Series, where we begin with firming up the period of travel, budget and venues. This may also be your step-by-step guide on where and how to plan for the honeymoon without being too fussy or spoilt for choices. Read on.
DECIDING ON THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE GOING
Yes, a honeymoon, traditionally, should be enjoyed by two persons namely the newly-weds. But these days, with many overseas trips enjoyed way before the wedding already, it is not surprising to hear that some couples include their family members into their honeymoon.
PLANNING THE BUDGET
This is very important as it helps you to determine the places you can afford to visit, as well the length of the honeymoon. It may also give you an idea of when you can finally go for the honeymoon.
Do you have surplus "earnings" from the wedding ceremonies or monetary wedding gifts you can set aside for honeymoon? Or have you already saved up for it, or intend to start saving up for the honeymoon after settling the wedding expenses? Or do you prefer a shorter honeymoon that does not strain you financially and physically?
SETTLING ON THE PERIOD
How long a honeymoon we can take is very important, as it determines the locations we can then plan to visit, how many cities we can cover, as well as calculating the total costs. Also take into consideration if your company allows for the long leave you intend to apply, or if any other membership, activities, commitment may be affected by your long absence.
Then decide on the season you wish to travel. Are you looking to do a Winter vacation with picturesque snow-capped mountains, trying out skiing, visiting Christmas wonderlands etc? Then bear in mind too that you may need to forgo shopping as most malls would carry winter wear, which is not suitable for the weather back home (Singapore).
We wanted the start of Winter, so that the weather would be neither scorching nor too cold. White Christmas sounds tempting for me but by then it would be too cold and my skin cracks in extremely cold weathers so I would rather not spoil our honeymoon with bad mood each time my skin flakes. The ending of fall / beginning of Winter is just nice.
SELECTING THE DESTINATIONS
The first step is to decide on the venue. Somewhere far, somewhere we have not visited before, and wish to explore.
We have between the both of us covered most of Asia itself, including the Australasia regions. Therefore a honeymoon in these continents are out.
How about a nice beach resort, where we get exclusive privacy, be close to scenic waters and totally relax? Such as Bora-Bora, Maldives, Mauritius etc? We could live in resorts on stilts, dine over the waters, swim with the fish, and close our eyes to the sound of lapping waves. We took that option out as well, as resort trips should be one of those usual trips for us, and we thought it was too un-exciting for a memorable honeymoon.
On my to-visit list are Europe, America, Alaska and Egypt.
We eliminated North America since it was never at the top of the list, and we had visited Vancouver 2 years back, the culture and places bearing close resemblences to the USA. Maybe another time, then.
We decided against Egypt as well, because while I love the exoticness of it all - tents, deserts, tunnels and pyramids - it wasnt on The Beau's top priority.
We did ponder over Alaska, so that we could see my polar bears, visit the ice palaces, bars, museums etc, and most importantly see the Northern Lights (rumor has it that this is the last year until another decade later). We did some research, on Alaska and Iceland, but other than the Northern lights and ice buildings, we didn't find anything else of interest.
So we settled on Central Europe, because it encompasses some of my favorite cities such as Paris, Fontainbleu, Venice, Rome, Florence, and UK and Switzerland. We hope to be able to work Santorini and Athens in too. This should be the best time to visit Europe, so we could explore a few countries at a go.
MODE OF TRAVEL
Finally, at this stage, before you launch into the detailed research, it is vital to determine mode of travel. Are you thinking of going by guided tours , so that there is safety in numbers and your land transport and accommodation are all taken care of? This would also be good if your honeymoon includes family members.
Or do you prefer to go Free and Easy, so that you are not subject to the brutal hours of the tour itineraries, and can roam anywhere, anytime as you please?
Once you have decided on all the above, it is now time to go into in-depth research of the chosen destinations, the travel agents (if applicable), the hotels and flights etc. Keep a lookout for Part 2 of The Honeymoon Series, where I will share with you on my research.