Quick question for those of you out there who are in the stages of planning your wedding: Do you ever feel like you’ve got too much time on your hands, or like you’re not spending enough money, or you’re hoping for another item on your checklist? Fear not, you rare birds: There’s a new Thing in town and it’s a -moon.

You’ve your got honeymoons, your baby moons, and your mini-moons (quickie honeymoons, which I didn’t realize were referred to as anything other than “quickie honeymoon”). But who cares? No big deal. You want more. You want to be where the spendy people are: planning a “wedding moon,” wherein the engaged couple skips town for a few days in advance of their actual wedding. As if a woman’s life didn’t have enough moons in it as is?

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Fox NY alerts us to Rachel and Frank, who are getting married this coming weekend and have thus been dealing with the typical stress of last-minute planning. So instead of waiting to catch their breath on their honeymoon, the pair decided to get out of town for a few days in advance of the wedding, just to take a quick break from the madness. This is actually a really nice idea (if you’ve got the time and the money, in which case, lucky you): it’s a lovely way to redirect your focus on one another and, if needed, remind yourselves why you’re getting married in the first place.

But because this mini-vacay is in the same orbit as the wedding, it cannot just be a nice thing you did. The wedding industrial complex—known for its disconcerting ability to take tap water and turn it into Screaming Eagle-expensive wine—has no choice but reinvent this “nice thing some people do” as a “this is definitely a Thing people (you) should do (in order to complete your wedding experience),” complete with hotel packages to reinforce the concept.

Rachel and Frank aren’t the only ones breaking from the standard wedding-then-honeymoon routine and taking a trip before the big day, says Jamie Miles, the online managing editor of TheKnot.com. She says it is a way for couples to avoid the stress of planning for a couple of days and just spend time together before the ceremony. […] Miles says the trend is even inspiring hotel chains to cater to couples with special wedding moon packages.

Of course this wedding moon business comes from The Knot: Branding every element of your pre-nuptial life since 1997. Give it a few months and we’ll probably hear from sister site The Bump about a “conception moon”: that particularly adventurous or lavish trip some couples take as a last hurrah before they try to start aiming sperm for an egg.

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(As a side note: How about we stop adding “moon” to vacations that precede or immediately follow major life events—events which, not coincidentally, are considered major markers in the traditionally feminine life. Cutesy “moon” language further infantilizes these moments, just another step backwards in our reverse march towards the ultimate twee-ification of women’s rites of passage.)


Contact the author at jessica@jezebel.com.