Here is a confession. For someone with not an iota of conventional sense of romance and dreamy-ness, I’ve never grown up planning or imagining my wedding or honeymoon. But thankfully, my boyfriend has. So when we finally decided to take the plunge, we decided to swim shore to Seychelles.
After weeks of research (a word I am now scared of) and decision-making, we sealed the deal. Here are some points to keep in mind. They aren’t rocket science, but the simplest things are the ones we forget.
1. Research, Research, Research
This one might seem obvious, but trust me, never underestimate the time it takes. Befriend ALL the travel websites (shout out to Tripoto). Save pages, bookmark them, read till your eyes bleed. There is an information overload, but one needs to be smart about it. Zero in on 2-3 options, and then work out an itinerary, keeping in mind your budget.
Tip: While researching hotels and reading reviews on Tripadvisor and booking.com etc, my boyfriend and I came up with a system- not only do we see the rating each hotel has got, we see the ratio of reviews. For example- A hotel has 4 stars with 200 reviews (80 good, 50 avg and 70 terrible). But another hotel has only 110 reviews (but 85 good and 20 average and only 5 terrible), the latter gained some extra points in our list. Maybe not the most foolproof way, but here is to hoping that it isn’t way off the mark.
2. Don’t be shy of asking
Despite through virtual combing of the options, we wrote to a couple of travel agents and tour planners in the country of visit. They gave us some insights no computer can give and helped us find our correct fit.
Tip: Also look up day tour packages in the city. This is a great way of finding a local who can show you around.
3. Listen to each other
This is probably a litmus test for your life together. So you better get it right. Hey, no pressure. Just hear each other out. . List out what each of you like- try finding a place, which has both, in case you have divergent interests. This is the best time to try out each other’s hobbies and hopefully find you a new one. Do you want to chill on the beach or jump off the cliff? Maybe both. This will help you decide a location with much ease. This is also important in planning the kind of place you stay at and the things you want to do.
Tip: Do keep in mind that you’d probably be half dead after all the celebrations. Maybe a relaxing spa, before the bungee jumping, isn’t such a bad idea.
4. Look for the sweet deal.
Did someone just say 30% + 20% discount for summer honeymooners? Yes, please! Stop shying away from being smart about money. Maybe you spend a day less vacationing, but instead spend it on learning how to surf. Sweet deal, I say.
Tip: Decide between B&B and HB (half boards). My boyfriend and I are light diners. So we went for B&B and play the rest of the meals by the ear. If you are particularly skilled at cooking, a self-catering hotel might be a great idea. You also earn brownie points with your husband/wife. Win-win.
5. Try something new
Actually, this must be top of the list. The whole point of travelling is to do new things. It doesn’t always have to be crazy or over the top. Maybe you go swimming with the sharks. Or learn a new language. Or try your hand at pottery. Or volunteer at the local organization. The possibilities are endless. There is no greater joy in discovering a new passion, even if momentary, with the person you love. The smile born out of pure adrenaline rush is unbeatable.
Tip: There really isn’t one. Just have the time of your life.
Oh, and most importantly, don’t forget to have fun. Wherever you are. Even if it is a weekend getaway to the closest hill station, or a month long trip across Europe, always let your hair down and dance to your own music.