Before you book your honeymoon in an all-in-one resort by the beach, think of booking a private home instead. Sure, resorts seem tailor-made for the honeymoon experience, but you could have a better (and less expensive) time by renting a big house or apartment directly from its owner.
Yes, we’re talking Airbnb—or one of the other home rental marketplaces like VRBO.
If that makes you picture a cluttered apartment somewhere, or the kind of bare vacation house you rented with your college friends a few Spring Breaks ago, then you haven’t been on any of these sites for a while. There are some seriously honeymoon-worthy properties to be found.
Here are some reasons you should look at an Airbnb honeymoon:
You’ll Save on the Hotel (To Spend on the Yacht)
If you’re cool staying in someone else’s space, you can save some serious dosh, especially in prime destinations where the average hotel room costs over $300/night. This will free you up to blow your cash on some other, more visibly ridiculous indulgence, like renting a forty-foot yacht or spending an hour flying some fighter jets.
You’ll Save on the Mini-Bar
All-inclusive resorts are seldom actually all-inclusive: they’re going to find a way to get more of your money, often in small but annoying ways, like charging outrageous prices for restocking the mini-bar. Some Airbnbs come with more supplies than others, but even if you have to take a trip to the local liquor store or grocery, you’re going to save money. Also, you won’t have to tip anyone (though you might have to pay for the post-visit cleanup service).
You’ll Get Suite Size for a Sweet Price
Chances are you will get more for your dollar than you would at a resort or hotel. Space is at a premium in a resort, so they’ll naturally charge more for big suites and penthouses. But with Airbnb or VRBO, you may be able to get a whole house for less than the cost of a mid-sized hotel room.
If you plan ahead, you can find homes with features like rooftop patios and private city-facing balconies, amenities that that would cost a small fortune at a comparable hotel.
You’ll Live Like a Local
If you’re looking to stay close to where all the action is—as opposed to spending your whole time in a walled-off resort compound—renting a home close to or in the town center will be cheaper than staying at a hotel.
A home will also allow you to experience your destination the way most locals do, as you’ll be forced to get out into the neighborhood to buy the things you need, as opposed to just calling room service.
Don’t forget that most owners will leave you recommendations for the best local restaurants and activities. Some will even make themselves available as informal tour guides, though that might be more contact than you really want to have.
You Can Be the Naked Chef (Or She Can)
When you rent a home, you’ll be able to make your own meals. Now that might not sound like something you want to do on your vacation, but it can be a great way to get her in the mood (or to get you in the mood, if she’s the better cook.)
Remember, you just got married, so any little domestic experience—like shopping together, or cleaning the dishes—will still be novel. In a year, when she says “my husband is cooking dinner,” it won’t mean much. But now, on this trip, it’s wildly sexy.
Also, you’ll save money on expensive restaurant meals.
You Won’t Hear Anybody Next Door…
While there’s no guarantee you won’t have loud neighbors, the chances are that someone who actually lives in the next house over will be more considerate than a fellow hotel guest–who, after all, will never see you again, and thus has no motivation to keep it down. Of course, the distance between houses will also lessen any noise pollution you encounter.
…And Nobody Will Hear You
Then there’s your own privacy. This is your honeymoon, after all, so the two of you will probably be spending a good amount of time making the bed squeak, pounding the walls with the headboard, and screaming some unbelievably filthy things at the top of your lungs. It’s nice to have the freedom to let loose, knowing there’s no family of five on the other side of bedroom wall, plugging their children’s ears and trying to ignore all the banging.