By Christine Hardenberger, Owner of Modern Travel Professionals

Once you say the “I do’s” and the getaway car pulls away, we’re guessing you’re going to be ready to relax and get the post-nuptial vacation started. Hooray! Time to get the honeymoon started!

You drive to the airport, step up to the check-in counter and hand your passport to the agent behind the desk. Her expression gets a little weird and then she says, “I’m sorry. The name on the passport is Jane Smith. We don’t have a reservation for Jane Smith.”

“Oh, right! I just got married,” you gush, “My name was Jane Smith but now it’s Jane Jones. I booked the trip under Jones because I knew I’d be married by the time we traveled.”

christine hardenberger modern travel professionals biggest honeymoon booking mistake avoid

“I’m so sorry, ma’am, but I can’t allow you to board the plane. The passport says “Jane Smith” which does not match the name on the reservation. Would you like to purchase a new ticket under the correct name?”

Yes, you read that correctly. The only way to correct this situation and save the honeymoon is to buy a new ticket with the same name that is on the passport which could cost hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars that you weren’t expecting to spend.

This is the most common mistake that newlywed women who change their names make when booking their honeymoon.

When booking an airline ticket, the name on the ticket MUST match the name on the passport or driver’s license (depending upon which is required) exactly. If it does not match, you will not be allowed to board, and the only way to travel will be to buy a new ticket.

christine hardenberger modern travel professionals biggest honeymoon booking mistake avoid

When planning the honeymoon, it’s critical to consider when so that you can book under the correct name. If taking the honeymoon less than six weeks after the wedding, book the trip under your maiden name since it’s unlikely there will be time to update your identification before traveling.

If the trip is more than six weeks after the wedding, you can book using your married name if you are diligent about applying for new identification immediately after the wedding.

While it’s exciting to start this new chapter of your life with a new name, make sure you don’t sink the plans by booking the honeymoon under the wrong name!

Christine Hardenberger is the owner of Modern Travel Professionals, a full-service travel agency. With over 12 years’ experience planning destination weddings and honeymoons, Christine ensures that this once-in-a-lifetime trip is stress-free. Contact Christine at 804-453-TRIP (8747) or Check out her website at