Your honeymoon is a much-needed break from all the excitement—and hard work!—of planning a wedding. While celebrating with friends and family is, of course, tons of fun, it’s time for you and your new spouse to step out of the spotlight and have a little one-on-one time. And while there’s no wrong way to celebrate your honeymoon, packing the wrong items can easily dampen the whole trip.
However near or far you decide to go, you’ll want to pack all the basic traveling essentials, including weather- and activity-appropriate clothing and shoes. Don’t forget copies of passports, visa, immunizations, and other important documents, too. Always keep a change of clothes in your carry-on, and store copies of your documents in your suitcase and carry-on–just in case. On top of that, you may have destination-specific items, like a winter coat for your Alaskan cruise or flip flops for your beach-side resort.
But there are certain items that you should have on-hand for your honeymoon—no matter where or when you go. These items are practical, so you don’t find yourself panicking in a foreign country. And they’re also romantic, so your honeymoon is unique from any other trip you’ve taken before, or will take in the future.
An unplugged honeymoon is a rising trend where couples turn off their phones, or leave them at home, before jet-setting. This might be necessary for international travel, as data can get pricey. But avoiding your phone means no distractions—you are completely focused on your new spouse and the new location.
However, if you’re used to reaching for your phone to snap a photo, you’ll be left wanting when you travel device-free. Be sure to dust off your digital camera—or invest in a durable, waterproof one—to record special moments without the temptation to check your Instagram feed.
Yes, credit cards are easier than carrying around wads of money during your honeymoon. But it’s always a good idea to have a little emergency cash tucked away. (Both in U.S. currency, and that of your destination.) A local restaurant might only accept cash, or you might have forgotten your wallet in your room. Either way, having some cash on-hand can help you get out of a pinch.
Ditch the purse before embarking on your honeymoon. Carrying a purse around can be cumbersome if you plan to do a lot of sightseeing. Plus, it adds stress on your neck and shoulders, which can lead to headaches and tight muscles. Definitely not something you want to deal with on your honeymoon! And if you’re envisioning walking around the beaches of Hawaii with your middle school backpack—think again! There are plenty of backpacks that are as cute as purses, and all without added stress to your body.
Birth Control (and Backups!)
Let’s face it—it’s your honeymoon, and you’re probably going to get a little frisky. For women on The Pill, always bring more than you’ll need for your trip. If you only pack just enough and then drop one, you can’t call your doctor for a refill.
But we also recommend bringing a backup method, like condoms. Traveling to new places exposes you to new bacteria, which can upset your stomach. Throwing up can compromise the effectiveness of The Pill. And if you end up visiting a local doctor, antibiotics can also interfere with your birth control. Sure, you might not feel like fooling around with a stomach flu, but it’s always better to be prepared—especially as you start to feel better.
Notebook or Journal
Pictures are a great way to capture special moments and sights. But they don’t always convey the way something feels, or that funny joke your spouse made. Keep a small notebook or journal with you as you travel, to jot down important details—like the name of the delicious wine you shared at dinner. Or the song you both got up and danced to. You can also tuck postcards or important papers within the pages, too, so they don’t get bent during the course of your honeymoon.
Personal Survival Kit
Each day, there are probably a lot of things you do out of habit: Making your morning cup of coffee. Reaching for the floss after lunch. Applying lip balm throughout the day. It’s not until you interrupt your daily routine–by going on a honeymoon, for example—that you notice (and miss!) your daily habits. A few weeks before your honeymoon, pay attention to those habits, and take a few with you. We’re not saying to pack the anti-nausea medication if you’ve never been sick flying before. But keeping some of your at-home habits can make traveling less stressful.
Music and memory are deeply connected within the brain. So deeply connected, in fact, that dementia patients can recall important life events while listening to special songs. Like, for example, a wedding song or significant honeymoon track. Not only will you be able to set the tone for your adventures with a custom playlist—but you’ll also be able to remember those moments for a very long time. This can include music from your wedding day, or simply a list of your favorite beats to help you relax.
If you’ve traveled before, you know the drill—extra underwear, toothbrush, and don’t forget your glasses! You might even have your own travel packing routine. But your honeymoon isn’t just any ol’ vacation, and there are some unique items you can bring along to make the trip more memorable, without taking too much space.
Do you have a packing routine? What items would be in your personalized survival kit?