SSJKarigan
VIP August 2017

Italy Honeymoon Planning = Overwhelming

SSJKarigan, on November 21, 2016 at 10:15 AM Posted in Honeymoon 0 24
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I was wondering if anyone has planned a European honeymoon. My fiance and I know for sure we want to see Italy, but we are also considering visiting other parts of Europe. I did some research and I'm starting to feel overwhelmed. I'm thinking it may reduce stress to stick with just Italy (after all, a honeymoon should be fun and relaxing, right?). Has anyone been to Italy? How did you go about planning it? Is it worthwhile to use a travel agent? I've never used sites like tripadvisor or travelocity, are they any good?

Additionally, we registered on one of those honeymoon sites so people can pay for parts of our honeymoon instead of a gift or money. What are your thoughts about those types of registries?

ETA: Should I start learning some basic Italian? How well are Americans received in Italy? (I mean... most European countries don't seem to like Americans, but what exactly can I expect?)

24 Comments

Latest activity by LibbyLane, on September 10, 2017 at 10:48 PM
  • NikNak
    Master September 2018
    NikNak ·
    • Flag

    Hi there, definitely a good idea to stick to Italy, you definitely want to relax... but just be prepared, you've asked about a honeyfund and they are really a hot button issue around here. You may want to search the forums and see the other responses that people have left.

    But to answer your first question. The Amalfi coast is gorgeous!

    • Reply
  • OG Brittany
    Master December 2016
    OG Brittany ·
    • Flag

    Not touching the honeymoon registry you have...search on WW for this topic, and you will see that is very much frowned upon in this community. How do you have 4 stars and not know this by now?

    Secondly, how long do you have for this honeymoon? That will be a big factor in if you should visit other countries or not. If you have only a week or 10 days, then I would just visit Italy, as there is a lot to do there. Or maybe look into a cruise if you are interested in visiting multiple countries in a short amount of time. Also, a lot of people in Europe speak some basic English, and are accustomed to seeing Americans. They aren't going to throw rocks at you or anything just because you are American.

    • Reply
  • Van Pear
    VIP January 2017
    Van Pear ·
    • Flag

    You don't need Italian, if you're in the central (tourist) areas, you'll be just fine.

    Honeymoon registries are a hot topic and frowned upon on here. You should be able to pay for your own honeymoon, as it is a luxury and not a necessity.

    I used to work at a travel agency and worked a lot with Italy trips and excursions. I recommend keeping to one region. You can do a lot in Tuscany with trips to Florence, Siena, and Pisa and countryside excursions. Or you can do Rome and travel down to Amalfi or Naples, Pompeii if you like history. Or you can do Sicily. There are plenty of options, just narrow down what you want to do (country, city, or coast) and then take it from there.

    If you plan on doing a lot of day trips or tours, I would say a travel agent is a great idea. I worked for a Virtuoso sister, you can look on there and find a local agent to work with.

    • Reply
  • OGJessieJV
    Master July 1867
    OGJessieJV ·
    • Flag

    Stick to one area of Italy. Florence, Venice, Sicily, Calabria, Tuscany, Campania, Sardinia or Lazio (Rome/Vatican City). It's not a huge country, but there is a lot to see in the various regions.

    ETA: Americans are seen as boorish sometimes because they don't learn the customs of the area. I would get a good travel book and read up on Italian customs. I grew up with a lot of Italians from Italy and they are very nice people, very generous and very open. Their culture is very relaxed but hardworking. Learn a few phrases, grazie, mi piace, and buon giorno are good starters.

    • Reply
  • Penguinlove
    Devoted December 2016
    Penguinlove ·
    • Flag

    What about a cruise? Then you can see multiple places in one trip.

    • Reply
  • OG Sarah
    Master September 2017
    OG Sarah ·
    • Flag

    No no no to the honeymoon registry.

    • Reply
  • Kelly
    Devoted July 2017
    Kelly ·
    • Flag

    We are going to France and Italy for our Honeymoon and I also felt very overwhelmed at first! Two websites that I have found very helpful have been tripmasters.com and visitacity.com. Tripmasters lets you input cities you want to go to and helps you plan flights, trains, and hotels all in one transaction. Visit A City helps with narrowing down what to do in the cities you are traveling within the amount of days you will be there.

    • Reply
  • MrsM.
    VIP April 2015
    MrsM. ·
    • Flag

    We went on to Italy in Oct for our honeymoon. We did about 7 and half days including travel time. We Flew into and out of Milan because it was cheapest. We then took a train to Rome, and spent two days there, the train to Florence and spent about a day and half, then train back to Milan and spent a day there before flying out in the morning.

    I booked and planned the whole trip, because it was double to do it through an agent. Once I found our airfare, I decided about how many days I wanted in each city, then booked the train tickets. I got fairly lucky with our hotels, I decided about the areas we wanted to stay, and then relied on reviews. I booked us a Tour each morning, then we would just trek around the city in the afternoon. We had a great time and it was a good bit of work, but I am glad I did it instead of an agent.

    • Reply
  • Polly
    VIP May 2017
    Polly ·
    • Flag

    I spent 2.5 weeks and went to Rome, Sorrento, Venice, Lake Como, Milan (for a few hours), Bologna (for a night), Pisa (for an hour, overrated) Florence, and Palermo. I was 20 and went with friends and it was fun but exhausting/too much in many ways. If you like the water I'd just do Sorrento/Amalfi Coast with a day in Rome since you'll probably fly in and out of there. If you like history and tourist things, do Rome and Florence. If you want quiet do Northern Italy/Lake Como. You don't need Italian unless you go somewhere rural but a few basic phrases is always polite. As for honeyfund, I'm of the "know your crowd" opinion. Many folks on this site will say "How dare you have someone fund your sexcation/sex vacation when they can't afford their own/service fees are so rude/I give a toaster to people who ask for cash" etc. If you think most of your guests will be like "oh cool, now I don't have to buy a card and can just do this online/great I didn't want to really try and figure out how to nicely wrap towels" etc then I think you're fine. I started out with a cash fund for honeymoon on Zola before FH poo poo'd the service fee and we both talked and realized our crowd is older and probably doesn't dread finding a check/stamp/envelope as much as some of our 20 something friends do (#notall20somethings everyone, just many of our friends).

    But I'm very pro-Italy! It's definitely a bucket list place and a small area will achieve the bucket list feel!

    • Reply
  • Anne
    Master April 2017
    Anne ·
    • Flag

    I can't say enough about Cinque Terre. Most beautiful place I've ever been! If you have time to make it there for a few days, I would highly recommend it. Other than that - I loved Florence and Venice.

    • Reply
  • Emma
    Master May 2017
    Emma ·
    • Flag

    Not for our honeymoon, but we went to Rome last year and it was fabulous and amazing. Most people spoke enough English that we figured it out. But I also learned a few words like 'hello, thank you, bathroom, please, lost.' It was a very friendly place!

    • Reply
  • FreshToDeathAng
    Master September 2016
    FreshToDeathAng ·
    • Flag

    Honeymoon registries don't actually gift you those flights/experiences - It's a lump sum of cash, and the company/website takes a percentage of it from what your guests contributed. They're tacky.

    Just use the cash that you'll receive regardless towards your honeymoon.

    I love Italy.

    The end.

    • Reply
  • Emma
    Master May 2017
    Emma ·
    • Flag

    Also, I'd definitely stick with one place. We actually ruled out Europe because as much as we loved it, it wasn't as relaxing as it was exciting and new. We decided that for our honeymoon we really wanted to just relax (because if we went to Europe, we'd spend it all exploring rather than being pampered), so we're going to an all inclusive resort.

    • Reply
  • MrsM.
    VIP April 2015
    MrsM. ·
    • Flag

    As others have said, Italian is not necessary. Most Menus had Italian and English on them. And someone spoke English most places.

    Also most places take credit cards/debit but you need to make sure you have chips in the cards ahead of time. We actually didn't use euros much at all, because we were able to pay for almost all dinners and souvenirs on the credit card (Capital One) at a straight conversion rate with no fees.

    We took out about $200 Euros just to have cash when necessary, but we just took it out of the ATM in Italy, again at a straight conversion rate from our Capital One360 account. We limited the amount so we didn't have to worry about converting it back at the end of our trip.

    • Reply
  • tinkerpsu
    VIP November 2016
    tinkerpsu ·
    • Flag

    We went to Italy this summer and planned it ourselves. Did everything through orbitz. Flew into Venice and out from Rome. We did Venice, Florence, Lucca and Rome (Vatican).

    You only need a few days in Venice. We were glad we didn't devote a lot of time there.

    It is very easy to get around and mostly everyone spoke english. We took trains in between cites and it was super easy. It is very easy to take day trips from Florence. Definitely go to Il Latini in Florence and get the tasting menu, one of the best meals of my entire life!! Be careful about theft in Rome and only use "official" taxis there. Eat gelati everyday and have fun!!

    • Reply
  • SSJKarigan
    VIP August 2017
    SSJKarigan ·
    • Flag

    Thanks so much for all the helpful information. I feel a lot better, and will definitely skip the honeymoon registry. As for my four stars, I have no idea how I got them without knowing the controversy - take it up with WeddingWire, haha. But I certainly know now. I'm really glad it was brought to my attention.

    • Reply
  • Future Mrs. Holz
    Super June 2017
    Future Mrs. Holz ·
    • Flag

    I've studied abroad twice and once in Italy. It's very doable. My fiancé has never been to Europe so I figured for our honeymoon I'd break him in by doing a cruise. We're doing a ten day cruise to Spain, Italy, and France. I'd look into that avenue.

    Additionally, most girls on here will tell you to nix the honeymoon registry. I don't see a ton of issue with them, but I get where everyone's perspective is on it as well.

    Watch/listen to a little Rick Steve's if you're feeling overwhelmed!!

    • Reply
  • OG Brittany
    Master December 2016
    OG Brittany ·
    • Flag

    OP - Glad you see that it is considered rude/tacky now! =) Just make a small registry and people will more than likely give you cash that you can then put towards your honeymoon if you choose.

    • Reply
  • 80kt
    Dedicated August 2016
    80kt ·
    • Flag

    I love Italy. Regardless of how long you plan on going there are tons of different areas of Italy to visit. When I was there I spent a few days in Venice (lots of people find it too touristy, but I loved it), a few days in Rome then we took a train up to Cinque Terre (stopping in Pisa on the way for lunch). Cinque Terre is amazing.

    I think it's always a nice idea to learn a few phrases in the mother tongue of the country. Even if you just learn please, thank you and do you speak English. I think it goes a long way. I would say of all the European countries I went to both the Italians and the French gave me a bit of attitude if I ever assumed they spoke English without asking first.

    And good call on nixing the honeymoon registry!

    • Reply
  • OG Sarah
    Master September 2017
    OG Sarah ·
    • Flag

    Yay for ditching the honeymoon registry!

    • Reply

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