The Almighty Dollar

Restoring some fiscal sanity in our -- negative savings rate -- lives


Don't shortchange your honeymoon

A shout out to all couples in the wedding-planning stages: Don't shortchange your honeymoon -- it's the best part!

Let's face it. Planning a wedding is a stressful experience and one you don't want to repeat in the near future. You spend months worrying about annoying details, such as which chairs to rent for the reception (gold or silver) or should the centerpiece be a fruit or a flower? After it's all over, your guests won't care and neither will you.

What you will care about is putting that whole wedding business behind you and spending quality time getting reacquainted with your new spouse (yes, that person you pledged to be with your entire life). So doesn't it make sense to devote just as many resources to your post-wedding period as the ceremony itself?

I am surprised that the honeymoon seems to be an afterthought for so many couples. Call me crazy, but I think I began planning my honeymoon at the same time, if not before, my wedding! For those of you new to my series, I wrote earlier that my husband and I were married on the Amalfi Coast and from there took a train to the southernmost part of Italy for two weeks of R & R.

Although we are avid travelers, for most trips we keep a tight budget, stay in cheaper places and often dine out in grocery stores. For our honeymoon, we loosened our purse strings a bit and stayed in slightly better hotels and ordered wine with our meals without guilt. We foot the bill for our wedding and honeymoon, so naturally money was a concern and priorities had to be set.

In the end, we spent the same amount for both -- I think it came to about $2500 each. It was worth every dollar. When I look at my wedding pictures, they still make me smile. But when I look at my honeymoon pictures, I wonder when can I go back?