As the wedding celebrations wind down and you hug the last of your guests’ goodbye, you’re probably more than ready to spend some time alone with your new spouse. Hence why some couples choose to leave for their honeymoon immediately after the last glass of the champagne is poured. Enjoying a relaxing trip together right after the hard work of the wedding is complete is certainly tempting, but it’s not for everyone.
A delayed honeymoon—waiting a few days, weeks, or even months post-wedding—is another popular option. It can give you more time to save up again after endless wedding spending depletes your funds. It can also give you something else to look forward to after the excitement of your nuptials is over.
Here’s how to decide when the best time to go on your honeymoon.
Should we leave right after the wedding?
Annie Banks-Mackenzie did it in Father of the Bride—and you can, too! If you want to make a grand exit, going straight to the airport as the wedding ends is certainly a luxe way to start your honeymoon.
An immediate start to your honeymoon means you can rest and recuperate post-wedding without worrying about reality (your messy apartment, work, etc.). Instead, you start married life enjoying your partner’s company in a beautiful destination (and hopefully with room service for a few days)
That’s exactly why Mitch Glass, founder of the travel blog, Project Untethered, chose to take his honeymoon right after his wedding last year. “I think from a relationship standpoint, the perfect time for a honeymoon is right after the wedding,” he says. “My wife and I were exhausted after weeks of stressful wedding planning, and our honeymoon gave us time to unwind, re-connect, and kick off our marriage with something special.”
If you want to extend the bliss of your wedding celebrations, take off for your honeymoon ASAP.
Photo Credit // God's Wedding Photographer
On the other hand, leaving for your honeymoon immediately after the reception can be challenging, too. On top of all the last minute details that take place in the week before the wedding, it’s stressful to even think about packing and planning for the honeymoon, too.
That’s what happened when Analisa Jolley, founder of the honeymoon blog, The Honeymoon Vagabonds, took her honeymoon right after the wedding. “We thought it would help us decompress after the stressful months of planning our wedding. I was dead wrong,” she says. “Not only did this make planning that much more stressful, but since we left the day after the wedding we also didn’t get to open any wedding gifts and some of the gifts we could have used while on our honeymoon like money and gift cards.”
Giving yourselves a week after the wedding to rest up at home and take time to pack and regroup before the fun of the honeymoon starts may be your best bet, she thinks. That way, you won’t have to worry if your partner has their passport and swimsuit packed while you’re in the middle of your vows.
Should we postpone our honeymoon?
Saving your honeymoon for later may not sound super appealing, but there are obvious pros to giving you and your partner some downtime before taking off.
There’s a lot of excitement leading up to the wedding day. But once the wedding weekend ends, it’s back to your daily life. A delayed honeymoon will give you something else to look forward to, plus it gives you more time to enjoy some post-wedding fun with your friends and family, explains Lauren Grech, CEO and co-founder of LLG Events & LLG Agency in New York City.
Leaving straight from the reception means you miss the after-party and you also miss the farewell brunch the next morning, she says. So, you may miss the chance to spend extra time with your loved ones. The delayed honeymoon may work better for you and your partner, leaving you more time to enjoy a bucket-list trip or adventure, Grech says. Plus, it may mean you have more time to save money and work out better weather-wise, depending on where you want to go.
Photo Credit // Simpson Photography
If you choose to postpone your honeymoon for even a few weeks, you do have to contend with reality. After months of planning, you may feel like your balloon is deflating faster than you expected. You can certainly revel in wedded bliss together with your spouse, but the excitement may wear off more quickly once you’re back to your regularly scheduled programming like working or writing one hundred thank you notes.
What else should we consider?
Realistically, the best time to take your honeymoon may come down to a few different factors. Here are a few more to consider.
- When can you get the best deal? To keep the budget realistic, consider when you can get the best deal on flights and hotels and travel then. If you get married on a Saturday evening, you might get a better deal on a hotel and flight if you wait until Tuesday to leave. Set up Google flight alerts and book well in advance to get the best deals. If you’re traveling to a trendy destination, you may save money by avoiding its busy season and visiting a few months later.
- How's the weather? You may have chosen September on the East Coast for a gorgeous fall wedding, but it’s now hurricane season in the Caribbean. Waiting a few months for peace of mind may work best in cases like this.
- How much time can you take off work? You and your partner may have already taken a few days (or a week) off to prepare for the wedding. You may want to delay your honeymoon until you’re both free to devote a longer amount of time to the trip. You can always take a mini-moon or a weekend road trip together in the meantime.
- What do the actual travel logistics look like? The honeymoon should be something you look forward to, not another thing to stress over. If you’re getting married in a remote location and it’s going to take three hours to drive to the airport post-reception, it’s fine to go home for a few days and regroup before heading out.
- What do you actually prefer? Go on your honeymoon when it works best for both of you—not because your mom thinks it’s cute to make a grand exit for the airport post-reception.
As per usual, the best time to take your honeymoon is whenever works best for you as a couple. Take your destination, goals for the trip, and any other logistical details in to account before makikng your decision.