It is often said that travel is only glamorous in hindsight. Without proper planning, the act of traveling is decidedly un-glamorous. When you’re fighting jet lag, can’t find your way to the hotel, or waiting in long lines at your destination, frustration can set in. There’s nothing worse than realizing you’re unprepared midway through your journey. The good news? A little foresight can go a long way to stave off the more annoying parts of travel.
Your honeymoon is a chance to relax, celebrate, and enjoy time together as newlyweds. If you’ve got a once-in-a-lifetime trip planned, it’s worth a little extra preparation to minimize stress and maximize fun. Keep these tips in mind as you plan ahead!
Redeem reward points for travel
One great way to save on travel costs is to redeem reward points for flights, hotels, or car rentals. If you’ve been diligent about racking up points on your credit card, this can be a great way to get some freebies or discounts on your honeymoon travel. Your honeymoon is a great excuse to spring for business class tickets or a room with a view at a luxury hotel. But it’s even better if you’re not paying out of pocket for those luxuries!
Of course, the most important thing with reward travel is to start early, plan ahead, and always pay your cards in full. Want to learn more about travel hacking for your honeymoon? Check out this article with our top tips.
Relax en route in an airport lounge
Airports can be stressful places. They’re also likely to be your first stop on your honeymoon. To start your trip off right, consider gaining access to an airport lounge. These are designated spaces within an airport where only certain travelers can enjoy perks above and beyond those offered in the terminal. Most are either affiliated with airlines or credit card companies. Typically, you can only access these lounges if you’re flying first class, have reached a specific status level in an airline rewards program, or if you have a certain credit card in your name.
Extra perks can totally transform your airport experience. There are typically free food and drinks available in these lounges, as well as comfy seating and access to outlets, free Wi-Fi, and printers. Lounges are truly the calm in the middle of the storm – if you’re looking for some peace and quiet in the midst of chaos, an airport lounge is the place to be.
If you’re unsure whether you’ll be able to access an airport lounge on your honeymoon, look into the perks associated with your frequent flyer membership as well as any credit cards you have. Day passes are also sometimes available. LoungeBuddy offers affordable access to lounges at airports around the world for relatively nominal fees. In fact, a LoungeBuddy credit would make for an excellent addition to your honeymoon registry!
Skip the line with TSA PreCheck, Global Entry, or Clear
Nothing kills the momentum of traveling quite like a long line at airport security. If you’re hoping to skip the line, you’re in luck: there are two fantastic options for travelers. TSA PreCheck is a government program designed to help move travelers through security more quickly.
After paying an $85 application fee and completing a background check, you’ll gain access to the TSA PreCheck line for the next five years. It’s typically much shorter than the average security line, and you’ll be able to keep your shoes on, laptop stored, and liquids in your bag. Many of the top travel rewards credit cards offer statement credits for PreCheck, so it’s definitely worth exploring this option.
Clear is another popular option for skipping long airport lines. Unlike PreCheck, Clear is offered through a private company. It’s a bit more expensive than PreCheck, coming in at $189 per year– but they also offer a new discounted couples membership. For only $239, couples can travel seamlessly through the airport whether they are going to a wedding or on the way to a honeymoon.
While TSA PreCheck expedites the physical screening process, Clear expedites the document and identity screening aspects of travel. Some frequent flyers opt to have both. There are pros and cons associated with each program, so be sure you know exactly what you’re signing up for before you commit to one over another.
Invest in quality luggage
Picture this: you’ve carefully checked everything off your packing list. You’ve scored an awesome deal on your flight, and have an amazing itinerary ahead of you. Everything is going well – at least until you notice the zipper on your suitcase is broken, and your clothes are threatening to explode all over the train station. It’s every traveler’s nightmare!
Maybe your suitcase has put in a lot of hours through the years, or maybe you bought luggage on sale and are just realizing that you get what you pay for. Either way, you’ll want to invest in a quality replacement. The right luggage can make all the difference in your travel experience. When a suitcase rips, tears, or breaks unexpectedly, stress levels can skyrocket. You’ll need to spend precious time on the road finding a replacement. You may even end up paying a premium for a suitcase you don’t really love, simply because it’s the only option available.
Investing in quality luggage ahead of your honeymoon can save time and stress. There’s no shortage of amazing options on the market these days. Some offer durable, telescopic handles or collapse and expand depending on how much space you need. Others include USB ports and built-in batteries for charging your electronics on the go. While these options may cost a pretty penny, look at the purchase as an investment into your future travels. A one-time splurge is always going to be better than constantly replacing cheap luggage!
Kick back in comfy clothes
Once upon a time, people dressed for success on planes. Men donned stylish suits, women wore heels, and everyone was expected to look their best for their journeys. These days, attitudes about travel fashion have relaxed considerably. Most people turn to athleisure and even pajamas when traveling. While comfort is key, there’s no reason to throw style completely out the window.
Fabric that contains a bit of stretch can help you stay comfortable on a long flight or drive. Look for options that provide a little more room so you can easily move around in them. Some options even feature moisture-wicking material to help you stay fresh even when you’re hours away from your final destination. Compression socks can help promote circulation, and cozy sweatshirts allow you to quickly adjust to chilly temperatures en route. While there’s no guaranteed formula for selecting travel clothes, allow comfort to guide your search. Keep packability in mind, too – you don’t want to be stuck with a bulky coat in your lap the entire journey!
Zone out with a travel pillow and noise-canceling headphones
Sometimes, the best way to pass time while traveling is to take a nap – or at least try! Whether you’re trying to block out noisy plane engines or simply drown out some of the chaos around you, noise-canceling headphones are a real lifesaver. They work by limiting unwanted ambient sounds with active noise control. A microphone captures ambient sounds while an amplifier generates sound waves. The music you’re listening to cuts through the noises you don’t want to hear.
Consider pairing your favorite noise-canceling headphones with a cozy travel pillow. A quality neck pillow is made from light, breathable material. They’re typically firm enough to support the neck but contoured to the movement and shape of your head. Portable and easy to take care of, travel pillows are a must for any journey. Look for something supportive and made from memory foam. This design will help keep your head and neck supported in whatever position you end up napping.
Upgrade to business class for long-haul flights
If you’re flying on a beer budget with champagne tastes, a business-class upgrade may indeed be worth the splurge. Last-minute upgrades are fantastic for long-haul flights. When airlines have empty seats at the front of the plane to fill, they’ll send out promotions via email or text. Pay attention to the offers made available in the week leading up to your flight. The closer to your travel date, the better the offers are likely to be. You can even check for last-minute upgrades at the airport upon check-in.
If you’re a frequent flier or you have a great travel credit card, you may be able to trade in miles for an upgrade. If the odds of a free or cheap upgrade are looking unlikely, this may be your best bet. Just be sure the miles are worth the expense! Short flights are generally not worth upgrading unless you’re tall and worried about legroom. Instead, save your upgrades for long-haul flights. That way, you can really bask in the perks of business class and get good value for the money.
Select strategic upgrades to splurge on
Another way to upgrade your travel style is to splurge on a few key items that will make your trip more comfortable and enjoyable. For example, if you’re traveling to an exotic destination, you might want to consider renting a villa instead of staying in a hotel.
Another area to splurge on could be your activities. Perhaps you want to take part in some of the most epic experiences your honeymoon destination has to offer. Check out Airbnb experiences or browse activities in your destination on Viator.
By carefully selecting a few areas where you’re willing to spend a bit more, you can upgrade your overall travel experience without blowing your budget.
Make stress-free travel a reality
It’s true what they say: the journey is often more important than the destination. While you might have your dream honeymoon itinerary planned out, it’s necessary to spend some time thinking about how to make the trip there as relaxing as possible. Thankfully, you don’t need to spend a lot to get the most out of your honeymoon. Keep these tips and mind for your next trip, and you’re sure to see them pay off in spades.
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