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Would You Forgo Your Honeymoon for a Buddymoon?

Keep the party going long after the reception ends by planning a buddymoon!



Photo: Stories Wedding Photography Costa Rica

When Jennifer Aniston wed Justin Theroux the newlyweds decided to spend their first days of wedded bliss with some of their closest friends, instead of just the two of them. They planned a group trip to Bora Bora, which allowed them to keep the party going long after the reception had ended.

And they’re not the only ones looking to plan more of a group vacation than a romantic trip for two after the big day. Over the past few years more and more couples are inviting select friends and family to join them on their honeymoon. “We have been arranging buddymoons for years,” Honeymoon & Destination Wedding Expert Kara Bebell of The Travel Siblings says, “but in the past they were referred to as double honeymoons, shared or a tagalong.”

Here is everything you need to know about planning a buddymoon!


So what is a buddymoon?

“A buddymoon is a honeymoon where you bring some friends along,” explains Susan Moynihan, founder of The Honeymoonist. “It can either be a standalone trip, or tacked on to a destination wedding where you're already together in one place and can extend the fun.”

Couples may opt for a buddymoon for a variety of reasons. They may not get to see friends who live in other cities often and this is a unique opportunity to spend quality time together. Or maybe another couple is getting married around the same time so they’ve all decided a group trip would be fun. Whatever the reason, you can plan to jet off right after your wedding day, or wait a few weeks or months and plan the trip for when your friends are free too.

For couples who are having a destination wedding asking friends and family to stay a few extra days is a great way to spend quality time with those who have travelled a long distance to celebrate with you. “Usually the motive for choosing a destination these days has a lot to do with maximizing time with friends and certain experiential activities they may want to share,” adds Harlan deBell, Honeymoon & Destination Wedding Expert at The Travel Siblings.

If you are planning on adding days on to your destination wedding weekend, be aware that you can’t prohibit guests from adding on days for their own vacation. “Couples love getting time to hang out with their friends after the stress of the wedding is over, but they have to be open to any invitee staying on - when you invite people to your wedding you can’t also ask them to limit their days post-wedding. If you want to get away from the larger group, switch hotels,” advises Susan

wedding party

Photo: The Amberlight Collective

It may be easier to avoid any unwanted buddymooners by flying off to another destination. You can book a buddymoon anywhere in the world: A beach resort, a ski chalet, an adventure vacation, such as cycling along the coast of Italy or a road trip in Iceland. Consider the activities you and your friends would enjoy most and search for locations that offer those excursions.

Limit the group you invite to no more than 10 people so it still feels intimate, suggests Susan. “It's all about quality time with your new spouse and a few special people.”

If you live far from your families you may want to create a vacation plan that will allow you to have more time with them. Pick a place that caters to multiple generations if parents and nieces and nephews will be joining you.
For a trip limited to friends, choose the people who you are sure you’ll have a good time with and who are interested in the same activities. You don’t want to argue with anyone about what to do or where to eat. Working with a travel agent can help you organize some of the excursions in advance so everyone can decide before they arrive what activities they want to partake in. “The trick is, making sure whatever you do suits everyone's interest and budget,” says Susan.

And don’t forget to make time for just you and your new spouse. “It’s nice to have friends tagalong and share the excitement of your honeymoon, but the couple should make sure they schedule a little time alone with each other,” says Kara.

Adds Susan, “If you're traveling in a group, arrange some separate activities for just you two, like a couples' spa time or a romantic dinner alone. You can always meet up with friends later at the bar for drinks and mayhem!”

To ensure that you include some romance on your trip you can book a few extra days after everyone else heads home, or fly off to another destination. “We always suggest planning a couple of days on the end of the trip in a different location to have a little space and romantic time,” says Kara. “After all, it is really a honeymoon.”