The following is a post from staff writer Crystal at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff, where she writes about finding the balance between paying your bills, saving for your future, and budgeting in the fun stuff along the way.
In honor of Daniel and his new fiancee, Lauren, I thought it would be fun to get together some affordable ideas for their honeymoon. My husband and I just recently celebrated our 6th anniversary, so I actually consulted with him on great honeymoons that could be had for less than $1,500.
Affordable Honeymoon #1 – Las Vegas
Mr. BFS and I went to Las Vegas for our honeymoon in 2005 for about $1150, which included the two shows we saw, all of the food, the bus fares, and our gambling as well. It is more expensive now, but we are going back this summer for less than $1,500 ($2,000 if my husband takes some of his fun money for extra gambling).
The trick was finding a combo deal on the plane tickets and nights at a hotel. The second trick was waiting to buy that deal on a Tuesday. The two round-trip tickets from Houston and 4 nights at a hotel on Fremont Street (our favorite strip) were $1,225 on a Sunday and $860 the following Tuesday. We also have bought tickets to see two great shows. With food, the taxi rides, and any bus passes, we are looking at a grand total of $1,420 plus any gambling losses. If Daniel and Lauren can go when school is in session, they could even shave some money off of that!
Affordable Honeymoon #2 – A Cruise
Let me start by saying that cruises are one of the cheapest luxury vacations a person can take! My husband and I have been on two cruises so far – one 5 day trip and one 7 day trip. We have to travel during the most expensive seasons since my husband is a school librarian. Even given that, cruises are pretty inexpensive overall. They run us $1200-$1500 for the tickets and shore excursions and extra if we splurge on souvenirs like art.
The tickets include your room and all of your food unless you splurge at an on-board high-class restaurant. You even get served like royalty in a dining room every night if you wish for absolutely nothing extra (well, we tip really well!). In the off-season, Daniel and Lauren could get tickets on a 7 day cruise for less than $600 total! Then the rest of my made-up $1500 budget could be funneled into awesome shore excursions, alcohol, and a nice one-night restaurant dinner splurge. Even if they can’t drive to a departure port (Galveston) like my husband and I can, I bet they can still find some cheap plane tickets in the off-season too.
Affordable Honeymoon #3 – Local Hotspots
If the budget is a bit tighter than $1,500, local hot spots can be turned into inexpensive but awesome trips! A bed and breakfast right outside of a city can be super romantic for $500 or less. If Daniel and Lauren are outdoorsy (the opposite of Mr. BFS and me), they could drive to the closest state or national park and spend an entire week camping or renting a cabin for $200-$1,000 depending on what they choose. They could even simply rent a hotel room at one of the swankier place and stay under my made-up budget. Staying local simply saves on travel expenses, which is usually the most costly part of the honeymoon.
No matter what they choose, I wish Daniel and Lauren the best!