This week, I’d like to introduce you to Helen Robshaw. Together with her husband, she runs a boutique travel company called Faraway, specialising in unique and adventurous honeymoons. We sat down together to discuss all things travel, and I’m excited to share our conversation with you.
So, hello – who are you, and what’s Faraway all about?
Hello! I’m Helen, and I live in Brockley, in south east London. My husband Al and I love to travel, and we’ve built Faraway to help busy people – especially newlyweds – go on unforgettable escapes.
Our business comes from a simple idea: we both love trips that are more than “just a holiday” and believe in taking time out from hectic day-to-day life in order to reset and experience something new. When it comes to newlyweds, we know every couple is different – and so we personally craft unique honeymoons from scratch to reflect your likes, dislikes and what would make an extraordinary adventure for you.
What type of couples do you plan honeymoons for?
We plan honeymoons, and other escapes, for all kinds of busy people! Whilst most of our couples love to travel and have explored together in the past, they’re often looking for a different kind of adventure for their honeymoon. Many see their wedding as a perfect opportunity to take an extended break together, and come to us to help them explore somewhere they haven’t visited before.
Our couples are busy with work and life, and they don’t have the time or inclination to do all the research and legwork required for such an important trip – especially alongside their wedding celebrations! That’s where we come in.
What’s a typical Faraway honeymoon?
There is no typical Faraway honeymoon, as each one is different. We’ll personally craft it from scratch around the two of you: where in the world you’re going, how you like to travel, what type of accommodation you like and the budget you’ve got to work to.
That said, we specialise in longer, unforgettable honeymoons (our average is 3.5 weeks) with an adventurous twist, that help our couples to feel truly ‘faraway’ from life back at home.
To give you an idea, we’ve recently planned a month-long honeymoon adventure exploring South and Central America, from the starry skies of the Atacama desert to the mountains and lakes of Patagonia, and the jungle and beaches of Costa Rica.
What destinations do you cover?
We plan honeymoons to a range of far-flung destinations around the world. We’re especially fond of helping couples discover unconventional options they might not have considered for their honeymoon; these can often make for a more unique and memorable trip.
Some of our most popular destinations at the moment include: Colombia, which is a really exciting, vibrant and varied option for a honeymoon by itself, and can combine easily with neighbouring destinations Panama, Mexico and Ecuador; South Africa, which has everything an adventurous couple could want (not forgetting exceptional wine!), and makes for an extra special experience combined with one of the less-visited southern African countries such as Mozambique or Botswana; and Indonesia, which can be explored in countless different ways to create your perfect honeymoon (Bali is only one of 17,000 islands that make up the archipelago).
What does honeymoon planning with Faraway involve?
First, we’ll ask you to complete a fun brief together that has a few questions around your travel style and your idea of the perfect honeymoon. Next, we’ll work hard to create the trip of your dreams – using online tools such as Pinterest, Zoom and Slack to help you visualise yourselves in the places we recommend for you, and keep communication simple throughout (we can always jump on a phone call too). Once you’re happy with the plans, we’ll make the bookings for you, take care of all the logistics and hassle, and put together an interactive guide with all the information you need.
Before committing to planning your escape with us, we offer all couples a free call to get to know us and ask any questions. If you’d like to do this, you can book it in on our website for a time that suits you.
What does a Faraway honeymoon cost?
An average Faraway honeymoon lasts between two and five weeks, and costs around £6k – £9k. Of course, this will vary depending on where you want to go, at what time of year, plus the types of accommodation and experiences you’d like to include.
In terms of payment, we charge our planning fee up-front before we begin designing your honeymoon. Then once you’re happy with the plans we’ve created for you, we’ll take a 30% deposit in order to make your bookings. The balance can be paid in full sixty days before you travel, or we offer a monthly direct debit option at no extra charge if you’d prefer to spread out the cost. We’ve also teamed up with the brilliant Patchwork (who are also lovely neighbours of ours in Brockley!) to offer a wedding gift list service – so you can ask your guests for contributions towards your honeymoon.
How far in advance should you start planning a honeymoon?
We recommend kicking off the plans at least six to nine months before you want to go. This allows enough time to make the honeymoon of your dreams happen, and also enables you to spread out the cost if you need to. If you’re planning to travel during peak season or have your hearts set on a specific experience or hotel, it’s worth starting even earlier.