Hero Material and I are going on our eight day-long honeymoon at the end of the month to Thailand. He’s been there once or twice, but this is my first time in South Asia, so I’m very excited.
We booked our trip for less than $1,000 (USD), including all our flights (business class), shinkansen, resorts / hotels and taxi fare. The key here isn’t just looking for the best deal, but having credit cards and so on that earned us miles and points on Star Alliance Airlines and Starwood Hotels. If you put everything on your credit card, you’ll eventually have enough to book a nice getaway after about two years or so, although it really depends on how much you spend each year. (I do not recommend putting all your points and miles in domestic low-cost airlines because you can’t use them for international trips. Of course, if you have zero desire to travel outside the U.S. feel free to disregard my advice. :) )
Also we almost always fly on Star Alliance Airlines — thankfully it’s very easy to do — and we usually stay at Starwood Hotels. This gives us even more points / miles. Basically it’s an exploitation of airline and hotel loyalty programs. I know that it can be a bit unnerving at times because so many airlines cry “Woe is us!” and talk about their impending financial doom, blah blah blah. What if you have all your miles with an airline and the airline goes under?
In my experience and observations, it’s highly unlikely that your miles will disappear. Big international airlines, such as United, Continental, ANA, BA, etc., have millions of customers on their mileage programs, and many of those customers are very loyal to the brand. When I was a management consultant, United was the most convenient airline for me, and I always flew on United or other airlines that had code-sharing and/or alliance partnerships with United so I could pool all the miles in one place (United Mileage Plus). It was the same for my colleagues even though their airline of choice was often something other than United.
All big airlines know that a mileage reward program is a valuable loyalty- and consequently revenue-generating asset, so long as its rules and so on remain intact. If your airline becomes liquidated (god forbid), others will buy up the reward program and give you incentives to maintain your brand loyalty.
Anyway, that’s it for my tips on how to book a nice honeymoon for very little money. Feel free to share your own experiences / tips and ask questions if you’d like.
P.S. I’ll be posting some pictures from our trip in April. :)