Around 99% of couples who choose a traditional wedding also take a honeymoon and so if you’re planning to get married in the near future, a honeymoon is likely in the cards. You probably have the big “how much does a honeymoon cost” question.
Although not every honeymoon is an over-the-top luxury vacation, the fact is that even the typical honeymoon is relatively expensive. The average honeymoon cost is between $4,000 and $5,000, which is usually between 11% and 14% of the wedding budget.
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The Cost Breakdown of Honeymoons
The average price of a honeymoon is just that — an average that isn’t necessarily reflective of every honeymoon. For example, luxury honeymooners could spend upwards of $7,000 on their romantic getaway.
Each honeymoon is unique. To answer the “how much is a typical honeymoon” question, you need to look at and understand the various factors that can affect the cost.
Your honeymoon location will play a significant role in determining overall costs. For instance, a road trip in an RV will run up a very different bill compared to a cruise around the Mediterranean, or destination honeymoon at a popular resort.
While honeymoons tend to be pricier compared to the average vacation, having a memorable honeymoon doesn’t have to break the bank and you can still enjoy the best honeymoon destinations and travel on a budget. There are great location options even if you’re on a budget, including luxury honeymoon destination regions like the Caribbean, Hawaii, and the South Pacific.
The cost of traveling will likely be one of your biggest honeymoon expenses. However, depending on your means of transportation, the time of year, and how far you’re traveling, the cost of travel will vary significantly.
Air travel tends to be the most expensive and usually costs at least a couple of hundred dollars even for domestic flights. Nonetheless, you can get better prices during the low season compared to the peak season when most people take their vacations. Additionally, some couples cut down their airfare by using travel rewards towards their honeymoon.
Traveling by car is usually least expensive, but you can also get some great cruise deals usually in the late summer and fall because of hurricane season, when you can find bargain sailings. Despite the mode of transport you use, the cost of travel will come down to how far you are going to travel, with domestic trips likely costing less compared to international travel.
In addition to travel, accommodation is another one of the biggest honeymoon expenses. Couples spend, on average, $2,635 on lodging. The most common types of accommodations include luxury hotels, standard hotels, hostels, and Airbnbs.
Deluxe hotels are, perhaps unsurprisingly, the most expensive option with an average cost of $884 per night, although you can get some luxury hotel rooms in the U.S. for around $300 per night. Standard hotels average around $150 to $300 per night, although this price can be jacked up during peak season. Hotels are pricey but some couples cut their hotel costs using travel rewards.
Generally, Airbnb tends to offer better rates than hotels in most locations. For example, in Europe, Airbnb usually costs half as much as hotels in the same area. In addition to Airbnb, hostels tend to be the most budget-friendly option and can typically cost between $15 and $45 per person per night.
Food is, of course, a necessary and fun expense. Some hotels include breakfast in their rates but if you’re using other types of accommodations you may have to foot the bill for all your meals. Wine and other alcoholic drinks will also affect your budget, and you may also have to account for service charges and tips.
You’ll also likely want to try the local cuisine if you travel for your honeymoon and you need to factor this into your budget. Unfortunately, the food part of your budget can be particularly difficult to tackle if you have dietary restrictions and you may have to budget more for food that caters to your requirements.
Honeymoon activities are one of the most variable factors when it comes to budgeting for your honeymoon. Activity costs will depend on where you’re going and what you enjoy doing. Some great budget-friendly vacation activities include:
- Exploring your honeymoon location on your own instead of using a guide;
- Visiting the less popular tourist attractions;
- Taking sunrise or sunset walks.
You can also opt for activity packages that allow you to take part in several activities at a lower cost.
General Tips to Reduce Honeymoon Expenses
Honeymoons can be costly but they are like any other vacation and you can use some vacation money-saving tips to reduce your expenses.
Booking your travel, accommodations, and activities early is great when you’re traveling on a budget and doing so can guarantee that all the affordable options won’t be gone. Booking early also means you can draw up your budget more accurately and you might even save as some airlines and hotels offer discounts for early bookings.
Use an Airbnb
As highlighted earlier, Airbnb is often less expensive than getting a hotel. You will also likely get a better price/value ratio considering that the average cost of an Airbnb rental for an entire home is $160.47. Compared to the benefits of getting an entire property, this price will likely only get you a single standard hotel room.
Choose Where You Eat Carefully
You will probably not want to be cooking during your honeymoon and while this means you need a bigger budget for eating out, it’s not impossible to cut costs.
Moderately priced restaurants typically offer meals that average between $60 and $100 for two and luxury restaurants will cost more. However, you can enjoy inexpensive meals if you opt for local cafes, small family restaurants, or street vendors over trendy restaurants.
Travel in the Off-Season
Certain times of the year yield different prices in different locations. For instance, during dry and sunny months, travel, accommodation, and activity prices tend to increase as vacation destinations get an influx of tourists. However, traveling off-season is one of the best ways to save on travel as you will likely get price breaks along with fewer crowds. The best part is that off-season isn’t always synonymous with bad weather and you can still enjoy some ideal temperatures.
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