If you‚Äôve decided you want to take a trip, but you don‚Äôt want to go the solo route, you‚Äôre probably looking for a travel partner. There are a few things you should take into consideration before you pick one of your friends or even a stranger. The last thing you want is to be stuck with someone who will ruin the whole trip experience for you. Knowing a person and spending every day on the road with them can be two very different things. Here are some tips to help you figure out if you are compatible to ensure an enjoyable trip.
Share Some Common Interests
This should be obvious, but as we all know, opposites sometimes do attract. Your travel partner doesn‚Äôt have to like every single thing you do, but you should have at least a few interests in common. Perhaps you both like the same types of music, so you can plan to go to a few concerts. Maybe you both like to try new foods. Something as simple as that gives you an agenda to enjoy together during the trip. There are going to be times one of you will want to do something that the other has no interest in. This is okay and should be respected by both. At these times you’ll have the option to either split up and each do your own thing or take a chance–you might find enjoyment in something you never thought you would.
Agree on a Budget
Traveling on a budget is essential. The last thing you want is to run out of money before your trip is over. You should sit down with your partner and come to an agreement on how much you can spend per day on things like hotels, food, transportation and other essentials. I’m not saying you should combine your money, but coming to an understanding can save you a lot of stress and frustration in the long run. If you can’t agree on the budget before you depart, this could cause a much bigger headache for you during the trip. It’s also a good idea to set aside some extra money for shopping and extra things that might come up unexpectedly. You never know what kind of opportunities might come your way.
Test Out Your Travel Partner
Before you commit to a long and possibly pricey vacation, make a plan to spend a weekend, or at the very least an overnight trip with your potential traveling companion. This way you can see how the two of you work together. It’s up to you if you want to be straight forward and tell them the purpose of the time together, or you can just play it off as an excuse to get to know each other a bit better before your trip. Either way, it should be a good way to see how the two of you will fare in the long run. Make a mental note of things that could cause frustrations. Do they snore? Buy some good ear plugs. Does it take them a long time to get ready? Make sure they get the bathroom first. Nip the little things that could manifest into much larger issues early on.
The Beauty is in the Details
The details I’m talking about are not the details of your trip. I’m talking about the details of any avoidable problems that might arise while traveling. Talk about how much time you might want to spend doing things on your own or if you both want to spend the whole time doing things together. Being honest is the key here. If you envision yourself spending half of your time doing things on your own and they are planning on spending the whole time with you, this could become a problem for both of you. One person is left feeling like they are forced to do things alone, while the other might feel smothered by their tag along. Once the details are a bit more flushed out, set some ground rules or guidelines for things that might happen during your trip. Decide what you might do if one person makes friends during the trip. Are you both comfortable inviting them to travel with you? What if someone starts a romantic relationship and you are sharing a room? If you have already dealt with how you’ll react to these situations before you go, there’s less of a chance of disagreements later. It’s impossible to think of every possible scenario, but the more you can talk about, the better.
The Benefits of Having a Traveling Partner
In conclusion, I personally prefer traveling with someone. Traveling solo can be enjoyable, but most of the time, the advantages outweigh the benefits of being alone. Many costs can be split between the two of you. You might see sights that you wouldn’t have thought to see on your own. And the best part, you have someone to share all the traveling memories for years to come.