Whether it’s the first time traveling together, or the hundredth, traveling is when people become most vulnerable; when traveling with someone, you learn about the other’s strange idiosyncrasies, and how well they handle stressful situations. Many couples determine a long term relationship based on their travel experience with their significant other. To make it last, consider these helpful tips below and continue the adventure…
What to Pack
The age old rule to packing is “the lighter the suitcase, the lighter the stress.” Bring only what is necessary and beneficial to the overall experience. A common packing mistake is when physical books are brought along. This can cause some unneeded weight and responsibility. Instead, consider getting something similar to a Kindle, where hundreds of stories can be stored for a fraction of the bulk (and price).
As far as clothes go, look to pack things that are light and that will be comfortable for you. My husband’s go-to are these incredible Craghoppers kiwi convertible pants which can be scrunched tightly into a small suitcase, yet you can pull them out and put them on with nary a worry about wrinkles! Not only that, they feature solar shield and are quick drying. These are definitely a must-have for every outdoorsy guy!
For me, my suitcases are filled with what my favorite vendor calls “mom clothes”, comfortable to wear, but not so frumpy that I feel self-conscious stepping outside of my hotel room!
As far as gadgets go, an up-to-date smartphone will contribute immensely to the experience as well, providing access to location services and maps with a fast-functioning navigational system. Updated smart phones are also capable of wifi calling; a feature where both calls and text can be made through wifi when there aren’t any towers nearby (especially handy when traveling).
Getting familiar with portable tech gear will make the travel experience far less stressful and will provide a sense of security that otherwise couldn’t be found through word of mouth and instinct.
Deciding Where for How Long
Conflicting ideas as to where to travel can become a problem. One may be in favor of visiting major landmarks like museums, monuments, zoos, and other touristy locations, while the other wants to explore a bit more off grid.
The key in this situation is to communicate, as it’s unlikely that either person can read minds. Many people like to display passiveness and appear nonchalant when asked where they’d like to go. This is a learned defect in social skills. People respect others who show eagerness and can make compromises based on that excitement. It takes two to tango.
Who’s Paying What
In a new relationship, both people should contribute to the adventure. If one person is paying for the entire trip, this can cause immediate tension. However, in a developed relationship with children where one person works to meet finances and the other works the household and cares for children, both are tiring responsibilities and both have earned their keep for a vacation.
In early marriage, where both individuals are working jobs, fight the urge to procrastinate and forget to budget accordingly as a team. Consider cutting it out evenly by percentage. For example, if Susie is making $2,000 per month, and Robbie is making $1,200 per month, and they both contribute ten percent to their next trip, Susie will contribute $200 per month, while Robbie contributes $120.
When traveling with a significant other, there’s a probable chance that every waking minute of the day and night will be spent together. Upon returning home, though it may feel strange, be sure to give each other a minute alone to breathe or go out with some friends. This is the healthiest tactic for any relationship that travels together often. Those that constantly cling and hover over their partners will see issues arise, and possibly experience a failed relationship.
Executed correctly, along with communicating and contributing as a binary unit, traveling with a significant other can be a blast. Learning more about each other through the journey and coming home to tell stories about it to friends and family is the strongest personal bond a couple can create.