Whether you’re on a one week trip with your best friend or a month-long adventure with your other half, there will be times when the going gets tough. You’ll find yourselves in situations that you’ve never experienced before, and people’s behaviour can be unpredictable when they’re forced out of their comfort zone. So how do you make it to the end successfully without strangling your travelling companion? Here are some top tips on how to travel with someone without killing them.
Get your finances straight and agree on expectations
Whether it’s with your other half or a good friend, disputes over finances can kill the vibe quicker than you can say “let’s go dutch”. First of all, it’s important to agree beforehand what kind of budget you’re working to. If one of you is planning on dorm rooms and home cooked pasta while the other has visions of luxury suites and lobster dinners, it ain’t gonna end pretty. Discuss it beforehand and make sure you’re on the same wavelength. You also need to decide how you’re practically going to split things. Are restaurant bills going to be straight down the middle or will you work out exactly how much your specific meal cost? If one of you buys the drinks at happy hour but the next round lands outside of it will you split the difference or call it quits? Even the most seemingly trivial things can become big stumbling blocks when it comes to money so make sure you get the awkward conversations out of the way before you set off.
Divide your responsibilities equally
This one’s quite simple - just don’t be a passenger. It’s understandable that one person will get a little P.O’d if they feel like they’re doing all the work when it comes to things like organising flights and accommodation, and researching and arranging activities. There are two of you on this journey and it’s gonna take work from both sides to make it enjoyable.
You need to agree beforehand that you’re both going to do an equal amount of the planning and what that will look like. Even if you see it as the boring admin side of travel. Either divide responsibilities based on what you’re good at or take it in turns before and throughout the trip so neither of you feels like the other’s P.A.
Always carry snacks
It’s amazing how much an empty stomach can completely change someone’s personality. Suddenly you’ve got a seething Hulk on your hands where Bruce Banner stood just a few seconds ago. One of you getting “hangry” can easily turn a pleasant day into a nightmare, but it’s completely avoidable. Just make sure you carry a few snacks with you at all times. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy, a packet of nuts, a chocolate bar, or some fruit can hold off the hunger pangs for long enough to find something more substantial. And it will save any unnecessary beef from kicking off in the process.
Don’t be petty
We once overheard a guy complaining to his wife on a trek, clearly upset about how far it was. He was really annoyed that he didn’t have the right footwear on.
“But you’re wearing your walking boots,” she protested, clearly a little bit confused. “Yes, but had I known it was going to be this long I’d have worn my all-day-walking boots, not just my walking-around-in-the-morning-for-a-couple-of-hours-walking boots.”
Don’t stoop to that level. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and stop sweating the little things.
This might be the best piece of travel advice you ever receive, so listen up. Your mood affects your travelling companion’s mood more than you could ever know. A smile can go a long way, and even if you’re not feeling it 100%, it can immediately make you and those around you feel better. Travelling with someone else can be challenging, and at times even infuriating, but at the end of it all, it’s supposed to be fun. Smile, laugh, have a ball, and you’ll receive the same positive vibes back a thousandfold.
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