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-   -   Please help us replan our September honeymoon (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/please-help-us-replan-our-september-honeymoon-227878/)

gina Jun 4th, 2002 07:59 AM

Please help us replan our September honeymoon
 
We had planned honeymoon for two weeks in Hawaii, but my fiance has been searching for a job for months and months... Last night he told me that he thinks it is doubtful that a future employer (and God help us, hopefully that employer will show up soon!) will give him two weeks off for a honeymoon so soon after he starts.<BR><BR>Our Hawaii honeymoon has been booked since January - four nights on Lanai, nine on Maui. We were spending an average of $250 a night on hotels (Luxury Collection hotels and Four Seasons Wailea) and our total budget was around $6,000 (flying on miles).<BR><BR>Now that it's looking like we may only have one week, Hawaii seems too far to travel and we'd like to consider alternate places. <BR><BR>However, I know late September is hurricane season. Does anyone offer hurricane guarantees outside of Sandals (we want to avoid all-inclusive, big resorts in favor of more intimate and luxury accommodations)?<BR><BR>We definitely want a beach, do-nothing-but-read-and-drink-fruity-drinks-at-the-pool vacation instead of a on-the-go-touring-Europe vacation.<BR><BR>Please post any and all suggestions for an alternate honeymoon - we'd be willing to spend about the same amount but it'd be great if we could do it for less, money is getting tight! I'm hoping that your suggestions will help us to swallow our disappointment - it's been an incredibly rough year and we were REALLY looking forward to two weeks together in an incredible place. Thanks so much in advance.

Ginatoo Jun 4th, 2002 08:25 AM

Hi Gina. Sorry to hear about your possible change in plans. Since September is during hurricane season, not sure I can offer much help because the places I'm going to recommend are in the caribbean . . but thought I'd respond anyway. My husband and I honeymooned in St. Thomas, USVI. We rented a villa so we had more privacy --and had a FABULOUS time. (rented through www.mclaughlinanderson.com). Spent about $3500, I think. Another option might be Providenciales. Small island, not much to do but Grace Bay is gorgeous!!! . . . Heading to Grand Cayman at the end of the month and planning a trip to Harbour Island, Bahamas in August. May want to check out those too . . . <BR><BR>Another option might be to postpone your honeymoon and go when it's REALLY cold (depending where you live, of course . . I'm in Minnesota). My husband and I went on our honeymoon 4 months after we got married. Gave us something to look forward to . . and some time to calm down after the wedding .. . just a suggestion.<BR><BR>Good luck and let us know what you decide!<BR>-Gina

Jean Jun 4th, 2002 08:27 AM

Gina,<BR>Don't limit yourselves to a resort that offers a "hurricane guarantee". Definitely get travel insurance as soon as you book so that you have some peace of mind and also a broader choice of places to go. <BR>Where are you traveling from? If you're on or close to the east coast you might want to consider Bermuda or the Bahamas. The flights are short and there some lovely resorts.<BR>Congratulations on your marriage and good luck to your fiance on his job search!

Sandy Jun 4th, 2002 08:39 AM

My fiancee was in the same predicament<BR>and when he finally got offered a job<BR>he told them immediately that he needed<BR>10 days off our our honeymoon and the<BR>employer had no problems. He just made<BR>up the time when he returned. Most<BR>employers understand that when you<BR>get hired, especially where it's a<BR>honeymoon they will give the employee<BR>the time off if it's mentioned in<BR>at the time of the job offer.<BR><BR>I would opt for either Bermuda or<BR>St. John. We rented a villa in<BR>St. John last year and it was breathtaking and so romantic. There are tons of them to rent on St. John. Go to the website USVI Online and there is a forum board there. Lots of great<BR>people on the forum. <BR><BR>We planned the wedding and honeymoon<BR>on St. John and it was truly a fairytale<BR>as others have also done before and<BR>after our's. All seem to agree it's<BR>a faboulous island for a honeymoon.<BR><BR>Congratulations. Really shouldn't<BR>fret over getting that extra week.<BR>Again, employers understand.<BR><BR>Sandy

Mary Beth Jun 4th, 2002 08:49 AM

I have to second Sandy's suggestion of St John. My boyfriend and I spent a week there in April and it was spectacular. There are only two resorts on the island but there are dozens of villas. If it were my honeymoon, I would want the privacy that a villa affords and in September you will get excellent prices on villas. (Definitely get trip insurance!) Just because you rent a villa doesn't mean you have to do your own cooking. I like being able to make my own coffee in the morning but other than that we ate at restaurants for every meal. <BR>There are very few beachfront villas however but the views from the hillside villas are unbelievable. I would rent a villa with a pool and a hottub. In the early evening, we would pour a glass of wine and sit in the spa, watching the sunset over St Thomas in the distance.<BR>If you want further info, feel free to email me.<BR>Mary Beth

Nancy Jun 4th, 2002 08:54 AM

Hi Gina, <BR>So sorry to hear of your problems... It's tough out there right now.<BR>I would suggest going to Aruba, Bonaire or Curacao.<BR>Those are about the only Caribbean islands which never get hit. <BR>As such, they are dry and arid (with beautiful beaches and great snorkeling).<BR>OR, I'd go ahead and plan to go on your original vacation and hope an employer would understand your situation. (It would take someone pretty heartless not to give you a break!)<BR>OR, you can do as another poster suggested and put off your honeymoon until November and go to the Caribbean.

gina Jun 4th, 2002 09:19 AM

Thanks for responses thus far - I'm hoping that an employer will give him a break, too (REALLY hoping!) but he's not too optimistic. In the field he's pursuing many places offer NO vacation the first year of employment, if you can believe that! Anyway I think it would just help my peace of mind to have a "contingency plan" in case it comes to the one-week thing.<BR><BR>I really don't want to delay the honeymoon since we have been waiting for it as the true start of our marriage. If that makes sense.<BR><BR>Can trip insurance cover you if a hurrican hits while you are on your honeymoon? I guess I'll have to investigate.<BR><BR>If anyone else has any other suggestions, I'd really appreciate them - in the Caribbean or beyond (can't seem to post in the Latin America board yet). Thanks, all!<BR>

Mary Beth Jun 4th, 2002 09:42 AM

We always get our trip insurance through Travel Guard. They have a website at www.travelguard.com<BR>

Susan Jun 4th, 2002 10:36 AM

Gina - <BR><BR>I can't believe that no body even mentioned Aruba. Aruba isn't lush, but it has exactly what you are looking for. Fruity drinks at the pool vacation.<BR><BR>My husband and I married in September 24 of 99 and have been to Aruba twice since. We will be going for our 4th time in 3 years. <BR><BR>We stayed at the Marriott Resort. You must request the executive suite which has a wrap around balcany. Fabulous and extremely romantic.<BR><BR>The Marriott has a wonderful waterfall in the swimming pool as well as a swim up pool bar. It has alot of seclusion because it is on the end of the strip. Especially in September, you will find nothing but honeymooners, and it is definitely NOT over crowded.<BR><BR>There is alot to do or a little to do. You can rent a jeep (which I highly recommend) and explore the island. You do not have to be fearful because the locals are extremely friendly. We even went into their villages and talked to the people. <BR><BR>Their is very low crime there.<BR><BR>You can take a horse and buggy carriage ride down town which is really romantic.<BR><BR>They have a sunset dinner cruise, also really romantic. They teach you how to do some salsa dances, etc. Really fun.<BR><BR>If you are into partying, they have party cruises called Tattoo and a party bus that takes you to bars. My husband and I aren't huge partiers, so we decided against it.<BR><BR>We took the jeep and tried to make it to the natural pool (didn't make it but were close). They have beautiful secluded beaches on the north side of the island where you can actually make love. How fun!!<BR><BR>They have a drive in theater.<BR><BR>Snorkeling, parasailing, jet skiing, four wheeling tours, horseback riding, walks on the beach, shall I go on?<BR><BR>Our most favorable part of the trip was the ground of the Marriott. In the evening we would walk the beach for miles, it seemed like no one was out there at night. We then watched the sunset and sat on the reclining chairs by the pool and looked into the pool ulluminated by lights. The palm trees swaying and the tricleling of the waterfalls. The Marriott had it landscaped beautifully.<BR><BR>You won't be disapointed if you go here.<BR><BR>Also, the Hyatt was real nice, but seemed to have snobby people there (no offense, just being honest), and the Raddison was pretty as well.<BR><BR>I wouldn't postponed your honeymoon. You will never get that "just married" feeling back and "honeymoon" time again.<BR><BR>Have fun and enjoy. Let us know what you decide on.<BR><BR><BR><BR>

Susan Jun 4th, 2002 10:38 AM

Oh, and Aruba is completely out of the hurricane belt, so the weather will be beautiful...sunny and breezy. The breeze is a wonderful feeling, it cools you down.

Marsha Jun 4th, 2002 10:39 AM

Why take a chance on your honeymoon with weather problems? If you can extend to 10 days you could go on a Greek Island Cruise. Southern Spain is very warm in September--areas like Marbella. <BR>Since your original plan was to honeymoon in very lush tropical islands like Hawaii you might not like the ABC islands. Barbados does not usually have hurricane problems and there are many resorts such as Sandy Lane, Glitter Bay or smaller resorts like Cobblers Cove to choose from. <BR>Bermuda is very beautiful with pleasant weather in September--The Reefs resort, Elbow Beach or The Pompano Club. <BR>There are luxury cruise ships that sail the Caribbean and are able to avoid any potential weather problems. How about the yacht type sailing vessels? <BR>The Spice Island Inn or La Luna in Grenada is very romantic. You might want to stay with the islands in the southern Caribbean, Europe or cruising. <BR>Maybe take a delayed honeymoon later to an island and go to Paris for a week in September. Can't get much more romantic than Paris and there's places to stay that fit all budgets. We were in Paris and the Riviera 2 years ago and we loved it. Many choices--good luck!

Marsha Jun 4th, 2002 10:45 AM

Air France has many vacation packages to select from--see airfranceholidays.com or just type out airfranceholidays using Google (air france holidays).

Nancy Jun 4th, 2002 10:59 AM

Susan,<BR>I DID mention Aruba, but gina did not appear to be interested after I described it...<BR>She is probably wanting a place which is more tropical and lush - more along the lines of the visual beauty of Hawaii.

Sharon Jun 4th, 2002 11:55 AM

You might want to check out data on previous hurricanes--using Google type out climatology of Carribean--stormcaribe-click on climatology of Caribbean and then click on "hits and misses"--will give you how many storms (all) that have hit every island in the Carib. for the lst 40 years I believe. Notice Bahamas has the most and Bonaire, Curacao have the least.

Sharon Jun 4th, 2002 11:58 AM

Note that there's a list of Atlantic storms, Eastern Carib. storms etc.--disregard this list and on the same page, scroll down towards the bottom to click on "hits and misses".

Barb Jun 4th, 2002 12:34 PM

That's an interesting climate chart--severe hurricane storms to tropical storms--looks like the ABC islands or Grenada are your best bet??

Joanne Jun 4th, 2002 12:42 PM

As someone who was actually in a hurricane (Lenny, late November 1999) I can still tell you that your chances of actually encountering a hurricane are pretty slim. The Caribbean is a pretty big area and there are so many variables in a hurricane's creation and path that I think it's worth the gamble to go where you want if Aruba, etc. don't appeal to you. You can check out the historical data on hurricane strikes for the entire caribbean at weather.unisys.com/hurricane/index.html<BR><BR>There are several things I would suggest. First would be the trip insurance (although I have never had it) since it's your honeymoon. Secondly, I would not get a villa - you'd be on your own in the extremely unlikely event that there actually was a hurricane. Our hotel was wonderful about taking care of us, and it was not a luxury resort (sometimes they are less accommodating). Finally, I would pack an emergency kit (I always do anyway) just in case - pretty basic stuff that I could list for you if you decide to go this route. Stuff like, mini-mag flashlight (handy anyway), tiny el-cheapo radio (nice at the beach for local tunes), etc. And remember that the worst that could happen is that you'd have an adventure to talk about the rest of your lives together! So don't worry too much about hurricanes.<BR><BR>Good luck as you begin your life together!

Barbara Jun 4th, 2002 04:10 PM

Try to extend a little longer than 7 days and have a relaxing honeymoon at one of the luxury hotels of the world--Elounda Beach Hotel--Crete or Kovotos Club Hotel--Mykonos-both in Greece. You can get information on these two hotels by simply typing out hotel+Greece with Google. Weather should be perfect.

Maria Jun 4th, 2002 07:38 PM

I conquer with Sandy above. Most don't<BR>get a vacation right away but I work<BR>in HR and you acrue vacation hours <BR>each month but if when one is hired<BR>and already has vacation plans (especially a honeymoon) most companies<BR>will give you the time off. Whether<BR>you have accrued the time or not. Just<BR>let them know immediately and all will<BR>be fine.<BR><BR>I also had my honeymoon in St. John<BR>a few months ago. Really gorgeous<BR>has everything. I also agree that<BR>renting a villa is wonderful. You<BR>will not be disappointed in St. John.<BR><BR>Have had friends who went to Aruba<BR>Barbados and St. John. They said<BR>St. John wins hands down. Another<BR>lovely island is St. Barts or Bermuda.<BR>St. John is still our favorite.<BR><BR>Congratulations. We spent 9 days on<BR>St. John and it was plenty of time<BR>if you don't want to take a full<BR>two weeks. <BR><BR>Good luck.

linda Jun 4th, 2002 07:49 PM

I , uh, don't CONCUR exactly, LOL. Like St John a lot- like the BVI much better. Greece sounds great- airfare might be a deterrent.<BR> Gina, I have a thought here. After the wedding you are wiped out. You have thank-you notes to write, endless chores with new habitat, etc. I say, take a short, lovely trip- say to St John- for 5 days. A cruise is great too- they can avoid the hurricanes. After hubby gets job, you get settled, etc take a second honeymoon to Hawaii. This time, it will be pure enjoyment without all the stress that's on you now. It won't lessen the enjoyment of your wedding- it will add to the pleasure of your marriage. Think in long term goals , not short ones.


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