According to the 2013 Honeymoon Survey by Turquoise Holidays, the most popular honeymoon destinations are The Indian Ocean and the Caribbean, with only 7% choosing Africa. The Indian Ocean and Caribbean were also considered to be the most romantic destinations, in that order, followed by the South Pacific. In total the three destinations make up over 70% of all Turquoise Holidays' honeymoon bookings. Unsurprisingly therefore, almost 80% opt for a beach honeymoon with adventure and island hopping being selected for second and third favourite styles of honeymoon.
When it comes to packing, eighteen per cent of brides plan to take a sex toy, but a quarter of those surveyed admit to hoping for a honeymoon baby. On average the bride packs no fewer than five bikinis/swimming costumes. Over 80% buy new lingerie for their honeymoon, with lace being the favoured new knicker of choice by far.
Food poisoning was considered to be the worst thing to happen on honeymoon, with, perhaps worryingly, only 14% choosing 'no sex' as the worst case scenario. However hand holding is still a popular public display of affection - just over half plan to do it all through their honeymoon and almost a third says they will hold hands on the plane.
The survey was promoted online to users of bridesmagazine.co.uk and to all Turquoise Holidays' forthcoming honeymoon couples. The average ages of couples were 29 (bride) and 31 (groom) with a combined average income of just over £61,000. Here are some further insights into today's honeymooning trends:
Who chooses and pays for the honeymoon?
Gone are the days when the honeymoon destination was chosen and paid for by the groom and kept a secret until the moment of departure. Only 4% of men choose the holiday, and 92% claim it is a joint decision. In 75% of honeymoons, the cost was covered jointly by the couple.
When do they travel?
After-wedding celebrations with friends and family appear to be delaying the honeymoon departure day. None of those surveyed planned to depart on their actual wedding day and half delay departure by up to a week.
How to get a Honeymoon Upgrade:
Some 86 per cent of brides chose an upgrade on the plane as the best thing that could happen on their honeymoon, and in a shameless attempt to secure one, 24% of brides claim to wear their wedding dress for the flight, despite none leaving on the actual wedding day itself, while 28% of newly marrieds admit to flirting with check in staff, and 17% bursting into tears.
When asked which one item would they want in their hand luggage if their suitcase got lost...
In the disastrous event of the suitcase getting lost en route, brides-to-be named - in order of importance - the following items as essential inclusions in their hand luggage:
1) cosmetics/toiletries, 2) swimwear, and 3) clothes; equal fourth were camera and mobile to record those special moments, along with the new lace lingerie. A bad hair day on honeymoon is clearly not an option for today's brides, with even her hair straighteners making it into the top five essential items for hand luggage!
James Bell of Turquoise Holidays, for which honeymoon travel now makes up over 70% of its turnover, says: "At Turquoise we still believe that the old fashioned glamour of travel is a huge part of the honeymoon, and experiences like picnicking on a desert island and flying in business class make the difference between a holiday and a honeymoon.
We spend hours chatting with our clients about exactly what their vision of a dream honeymoon is, but commissioning our annual Honeymoon Survey is a fantastic way to see into the mind of a present day bride and make sure we are up with the latest trends. The results are great fun to read as well as being learning experiences for all our team. One bride-to-be has even said she wants to arrange lap dancing lessons on their honeymoon - you can be sure that will be added to our Honeymoon Gift List!"