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July 17 2024 / 01:55 PM
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Travelweek
'Buddymoon' trend rises as newlyweds invite friends and family to join their honeymoon

It used to be that honeymoons were a time for newlyweds to ‘discover’ one another and enjoy some much-needed privacy. Having lived separately up until then, the post-wedding trip represented the first time a couple could truly be alone together. But with many now marrying later in life and living together before tying the knot, ‘quality alone time’ isn’t such a novelty anymore.

Enter the ‘buddymoon,’ a modern-day honeymoon that wedding couples are now taking with close family and friends. Whether it’s just one other couple tagging along or a big group of extended family members, either for the entire duration of the trip or just a few days, buddymoons are gaining in popularity, particularly since the solitary years of the pandemic, says John Hawks, Executive Director of Destination Wedding & Honeymoon Specialists Association (DWHSA).

As the saying goes, there’s strength in numbers, which is ever so true in travel. Larger groups travelling and booking together are often privy to better rates, bigger discounts and additional perks. If splitting the cost of the trip evenly amongst the group, buddymoons can also be a cost-savvy option for newlyweds. Plus, inviting friends and family is a great way for couples to ‘keep the party going’ and prolong the magic of their wedding day.

But of course, buddymoons aren’t for everyone. After the hustle and bustle of planning a wedding, couples may simply want to de-stress on their own, without the ‘burden’ of acting as hosts on their honeymoon. Travelling in a group also means having to accommodate a wide range of interests, preferences and personality types, which can lead to potential drama. 

 

How many people should you invite? 

A good rule of thumb is to keep the group to under 10 people, big enough so that newlyweds still get the benefit of travelling with multiple friends and family, but intimate enough so that they don’t feel overwhelmed. But of course, buddymoons come in all shapes and sizes. For more introverted newlyweds, inviting just one other couple would make for great dinner conversation and added laughs on excursions, but those who are more sociable and love a good party may want to ask 10 or more friends and family members to share in the fun.  

 

Where should you go? 

To avoid a logistical nightmare, it’s a good idea to choose a short-haul destination that’s easy for everyone to get to. Also, while a road trip is a good way to stay local, having to rent multiple cars and book several rooms at various hotels along the way is a lot to coordinate among a big group of people. Keep it simple by choosing an all-inclusive resort, a city break destination with one hotel as a primary base, or a cottage or villa rental by the lake or sea.

 

How long should you stay? 

Couples opting for a buddymoon often find that inviting friends and family to join the middle portion of the trip is best. This allows couples to enjoy a couple days on their own at the beginning and end of the trip, with a few days in between to be with their loved ones. With this in mind, anywhere from 10-14 days is the perfect amount of time for a buddymoon that’s private and sociable, the best of both worlds.

 

Tips for travel advisors

“Travel advisors should take the time to confirm that both spouses are on board with the idea of friends and family coming along on the trip,” says Hawks. “If he’s inviting his college fraternity brothers and she’s unhappy with that idea, no one will be happy in the end!

Hawks also tells advisors to help couples add some structure to their buddymoons, which may involve pre-planning activities, excursions and special meals. “Nothing feels more awkward than the couple and their arriving friends sitting around the hotel room, asking each other what they want to do for the day!” says Hawks. 

Jun 25, 2024

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