Planning The Perfect Honeymoon
Finding and booking the perfect holiday isn’t always straightforward, so we ask one travel expert for her advice on how to have the perfect honeymoon
‘If you have an expert working with you it takes away all the stress and leaves you feeling far more relaxed and pampered,’ says Rachel Tredwell of thetredwells.notjusttravel.com. ‘You feel more like a VIP, because the person looking after you cares about getting you the perfect honeymoon. They can make suggestions that you may not have even thought of, give you extra guidance and can also set up a honeymoon list for you, so instead of getting yet another saucepan, guests can contribute to your honeymoon instead,’ she explains. ‘Importantly, a honeymoon expert will think of the important little things that you may not have considered, or simply not known. They often have special relationships with hoteliers and helpful insider knowledge on deals and discounts, and can also offer you flexible payment terms – every little helps!
‘One thing I always advise is that honeymooners ask themselves about what is really important to them, and what they definitely won’t compromise on. Knowing what you don’t like is equally important as what you do like. If you work with a planner, they can help guide you though the pitfalls of certain destinations that may not be common knowledge. If you want to have a multi-centre honeymoon, which is quite popular, then you need to think about distances, and how much time you actually want to spend travelling,’ says Rachel. ‘The best piece of advice I would give couples who are starting to think about booking their honeymoon is to set a realistic budget to avoid disappointment. I often get honeymooners come to me and want an all-inclusive, over-the-water villa in The Maldives in peak season for 5,000. Sadly, and inevitably, they are going to be disappointed.
‘I would say the biggest mistake most couples make is not really thinking about the weather,’ Rachel continues. ‘Getting married in the summer can cause problems when choosing where to go, especially if they are thinking of going long-haul. They also need to start planning early as popular places do get booked up, especially in the busy summer season.
‘The one tip all couples should follow (which is especially important at the moment given the impact of Covid) is to book with a travel agent so that you get a fully protected package, meaning that all elements of the honeymoon are financially protected should something go wrong, which should help reduce stress levels.’
We ask Rachel for her dream destination. ‘I love Bora Bora and the nearby islands,’ she says. ‘It has all the beauty of The Maldives but is a living, breathing island, rather than just a resort. Equally, I have a real passion for safari and Zambia has to be top of the list for that feeling of being at one with nature and getting away from everything.’
Rachel is also a green ambassador for notjusttravel, meaning that they work alongside environmental partner Mossy Earth to help protect the planet, and 5 per passenger for every booking goes to help one of their chosen projects.