5 Amazing Honeymoons That Only Seem Expensive

By Amanda Meadows on 18 December 2015 2 comments

Europe. Asia. Remote islands. When you hear these, you immediately think "$$$." But that's not necessarily the case! You can easily find ways to afford these five amazing honeymoon spots!

1. The Caribbean

This may sound crazy, but there are ways you can make a trip to the Caribbean work within your budget.

All-Inclusive Resorts Can Be Cool

All-inclusive resorts like Sandals, or cruise lines like Royal Caribbean, are really stepping up their game for young people to buy their packages. You can find competitive rates with reasonable add-on packages for specific excursions. For couples short on time, don't overthink your itinerary. (See also: 6 Questions to Ask Before You Book a Vacation Package)

Don't Forget Puerto Rico!

The U.S. territory of Puerto Rico uses U.S. dollars, has a large English-speaking population, and has really affordable flights from the states. For example, a flight from LAX to SJU in November (right before the busy season of December through May) is only around $300 per person.

Prices for everything from hotels to restaurant meals are comparable to nearly everything in the states, as opposed to many of the fancier Caribbean islands (St. Bart's, Bermuda), where there is a high markup for fine dining and shopping. (See also: 7 Fun, Frugal Vacations for People Over 30)

When to Travel for Deals

The rainy season of September through November is good for lower rates and fewer crowds. The mid-summer peak time can work if you pick cheaper destinations such as Belize, the Dominican Republic, or Puerto Rico.

2. Italy

You can live that Tuscan dream if you play it smart and plan it yourself.

When to Fly

The most affordable time to fly to Italy is November, but you will be facing a few trade-offs: Fewer attractions may be open and weather can start getting rainy and harsh. October is just before the lowest month and can be just as affordable with more options for accommodations and temperate weather. April is also a good, affordable time, as schools are still in session.

Trains Are Your Deal Machine

Consider getting a Eurail pass, as it will pay for itself very quickly. For as low as $190 per person, you can get a pass that will allow you to visit multiple cities across Italy. This means you can hop on a train, go to a new city, and have a new budget adventure with little planning.

Airbnbs Are Gorgeous

You don't want to settle for a two-star hotel or a hostel. Getting an Airbnb rental is definitely your best bet for a honeymoon-appropriate, Instagram-worthy stay. Accommodations like this chic studio in Milan or this spacious canal-view apartment in Venice are great examples of luxury on a budget.

3. Mountain Ski Resort

So you want to be snow bunnies by day, and cuddle by a fireplace in a chalet by night. It's entirely possible without paying Vail or Swiss Alps money.

Stay at an Underrated Resort

The countless great mountain ranges in America means lots of ski towns are relegated to "deep cuts." This equals savings for anyone looking to celebrate their winter nuptials in a less famous setting with equally dramatic views. With places like Red Lodge Mountain in Montana, Taos Ski Valley in New Mexico, and Mt. Bachelor Ski Resort (fun irony) in Oregon, you've got some great affordable options.

When to Travel

Shoulder seasons are your friend. Late October through mid-November, and the tail end of the season from March through April, are great times to still get some skiing in while enjoying the peace and quiet of non-peak times.

4. Hong Kong

If you've always wanted to galavant a dazzling city scape, savor Chinese cuisine, and enjoy the luxurious shopping experiences of Hong Kong, know that it can be done without the sky-high prices.

Exchange Rates Are Good Right Now

China has recently made it much easier for American tourists to plan their trips with a new tourism website and easier to follow visa guidelines.

When to Fly

Flights are getting cheaper from all kinds of cities. From LAX, for example, one can fly for as low as $600 per person. That's low enough to afford another day or two of travel! The cheapest times of year to buy tickets are October, November, and December. (Noticing a pattern? A good reason to have a fall wedding!)

Accommodations

Airbnb is, again, a great way to go. You can rent a brand new luxury condo for half of what a hotel room will cost you, before tax! This trendy flat, this cozy suite, and this roomy apartment are all great options for well under $200 per night.

5. Hawaii

This classic U.S. bucket-list vacation spot sounds like an expensive splurge, but it's totally reasonable and within reach for couples on a budget.

When to Fly

Luckily, there are lots of little pockets to fly to Hawaii throughout the year: January through late February, the first half of March, late April through early June, mid-August through early November (just watch for storm advisories), and the end of November through mid-December. Any major holidays, three-day weekends, or school breaks should be avoided.

Hotel Deals

During the above times of year, you can find boutique hotels at discounted rates. Larger resorts tend to start their rotating renovations and repairs during the off seasons, so be sure to ask for the lowest rate while asking to be placed in a room as far from the renovations as possible (you might have to get a manager on the phone, but it'll be worth it). Follow Beat of Hawaii for up-to-date Hawaii deals.

Self-Guided Tours

Don't get stuck on expensive and boring group tours. Simply rent a car and go on your own self-guided excursions. You can even make friends with fellow hotel guests and go on long drives in a friendly caravan.

Any other great frugal honeymoon ideas?

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Damian Davila's picture

As a Hawaii resident since 2007, I wouldn't recommend to visit the islands during the last days of April and the first days of May. The Hawaiian Islands are overrun with tourists during Japan's "Golden Week", when most businesses are closed and travelers from Japan head in droves to Hawaii. The bulk of our visitors are from Japan. During that week, you'll have a harder time finding accommodations and renting cars and, if you're able to get them, you're very likely to pay a premium!

Guest's picture
Guest

You do know that Hong Kong and China have different currencies right? HK is tied directly to USD (7.75) so the exchange rate argument is moot.