|Initial planning. Choose a reputable travel agent with whom you have worked before, or get a trusted recommendation. Many travel agents don't charge a fee, so take advantage of their services and spare yourself the research. Meet the agent in person with a firm budget range and some desirable destinations in hand.
NEW PASSPORT REGULATIONS TO TAKE EFFECT
The United States Department of State and Homeland Security has new regulations for all US Citizens traveling outside the country. Beginning December 2005, anyone traveling to Bermuda, the Carribean, Central and South America must have a passport to re-enter the US. This new requirement will add Canada and Mexico by December 2006. Here is the official schedule from the US passport office and Department Of State.....
"The travel initiative requirements will be rolled out in phases, providing as much advance notice as possible to the affected public to enable them to meet the terms of the new guidelines. The proposed implementation timeline is as follows:
December 31, 2005 – Passport or other accepted document required for all travel (air/sea) to or from the Caribbean, Bermuda, Central and South America.
December 31, 2006 – Passport or other accepted document required for all air and sea travel to or from Mexico and Canada.
December 31, 2007 – Passport or other accepted document required for all air, sea and land border crossings."
UPDATE: The Department of Homeland Security has pushed back the implementation dates for this to take effect. However, Cruise lines have the option of requireing passports for identification on an individual basis. If you are cruising for your honeymoon, check with your travel agent or the cruise line directly to see what their requirements are.
IF this is your first passport, plan ahead. It can take up to a month(sometimes longer) to get the passport after you apply. You’ll need to apply in person if you are applying for a U.S. passport for the first time. If you are planning a name change, try to make your name changes official before you leave. There are also new restrictions on what you can take with you either in your checked bags, your carry-on's and on your person. For more information on what you can & cannot carry,
Applying for your first passport? Click Here for information and a downloadable form.
To renew your current or expired passport, Click Here
Evaluating all-inclusive packages or cruises. Generally, all-inclusive resorts or cruise packages can offer good value for honeymooners, but be sure to look closely to see exactly what is included in the price, and then compare it to an "a la carte" vacation.
One of the best things about all-inclusive's is that they allow couples to know exactly what they will spend ahead of time; often, another benefit for active honeymooners is the chance to try snorkeling, horseback riding or other new experiences without worrying about extra cost.
Packing. Prepare a master packing-list well before the wedding, so that you don't have to spend any extra time debating about what to bring before you depart.
Check to see if your hotel provides hair dryers, irons and robes so that you don't have to lug your own. Stock up on basic sundries such as Band-Aids, aspirin, sunscreen and toothpaste -- these items often are expensive at a resort shop.
Put a contact name and address on the inside and outside of each piece of luggage, and carry essentials with you, including your itinerary with emergency contacts, your travel agent's phone number, and hotel and car-rental confirmation numbers. Another recommended travel tip is make copies of your passports and/or drivers license and put a copy in each piece of luggage, including your carry-ons. This way if they get lost there is a way to get them returned to you. Should you lose your passport, having a copy of the first page(the one with your picture) will make it much quicker to get a replacement. Also, it's a good idea to make copies of your travel plans and leave them with someone at home.
Trip safety. It's easy to get caught up in the fun and romance of a honeymoon -- to the point where basic caution is forgotten. Be realistic about security: Keep a close eye on your luggage en route; use traveler's checks or credit cards instead of flashing cash. Ask your rental car agency about emergency assistance or request a car phone (you're often only charged if you use it); store valuables and airline tickets in your hotel or room safe.
Use Credit Cards When Out Of The Country. Almost all countries will accept US Dollars in tourist areas. Unfortunately, local merchants are experts at ripping you off using the Dollar conversion value to their currency. Almost all major US credit card companies will automatically convert your purchases to US Dollars using the correct current conversion rate. Check with your bank for details.
The National Safety Council has brochures on safe vacationing.
Call (800) 621-7615.
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