Sitting side by side with the love of your life watching the sunset. Skipping through cobblestone streets hand in hand. Enjoying fine wine at your romantic picnic on the beach. It all seems so magical. So ideal. So perfect, right?
This fantasy world is filled with endless adventure, smiles and romance. But does reality match up? What’s it really like traveling with the one you love?
The good news is your experience can be exactly that and SO much more. But to get even close to that dream-like scenario, a lot that needs to go down behind the scenes, both during your trip and before you leave.
So how do you travel with your partner to ensure that only positive things result from your experience on the road? Here are 10 pieces of advice to help you out.
- Establish your roles.
Use each other’s strengths to unofficially assign roles. If you’re best at navigating, be in control of the map. If your partner is the photographer, let him/her take charge of the pictures. The same goes for all other aspects of travel – research, planning, etc. It’s kind of like an unspoken assignment that keeps your travels flawless and organized. And most importantly, it keeps you both happy!
- Create an a-la-carte menu for your travels.
In order to avoid frustration from Google searching while you’re away, do the research beforehand. Now, I don’t mean over plan every second of every day – just create an a-la-carte menu to help guide each day. It will allow you to choose what you’re in the mood for on the whim, but also remain carefree. Researching on the road creates a sense of urgency to make a decision, which can result in misunderstandings.
- Pick activities that suit both of your interests.
While you’re planning, be sure to choose activities that you’ll both enjoy. Of course there will be a little give and take, but generally planning with each other’s interests in mind makes all the difference. This is a trip for two, so you both need to be on board.
- Don’t let outside circumstances cause frustration.
The weather may be terrible. The restaurants may be overpriced. Despite your research, the hotel could be a disappointment. Any of these unfortunate situations might happen during your travels. Do not let them ruin your trip! Use each other to keep the situation light and positive.
- Be aware and understanding of how your partner feels.
Take a second to relax if one of you is feeling overwhelmed. Even though you love each other, you are different people. Sometimes both parties won’t be on the same page. Instead of getting upset, be understanding. Your personal enjoyment and the happiness of the one you love depends on it!
- Pick two to three things that are a personal MUST.
Even if you planned the trip with both of your interests in mind, there will be certain things that one person wants to do more than the other. Have each of you pick two to three things that are a MUST and incorporate that into your itinerary. After all, as a couple, you have to celebrate each other’s differences. You should never be holding the other back, and this carries through to travel.
- Always communicate with each other.
You can be together 24/7 and still hide how you are feeling. If you don’t fully communicate, little issues will build up and cause major frustrations. And who needs that when you are off exploring and enjoying the world together? In life and in travel, communication is key.
- Help each other pack wisely.
Your enjoyment of the trip begins with preparation. Nothing is worse than one person packing too much and complaining about how heavy their bag is all week. Or if one of you packs the stylish and uncomfortable shoes vs. hiking boots (this tends to be my problem!). Helping each other pack appropriately will do wonders for your trip.
- Take time to appreciate the little things.
Even when you’re in a new and exciting place where big things are happening every day, enjoy the little moments. When the day is over and you’re relaxing with a bottle of wine in your room, it can be just as special as any grand adventure.
- Don’t isolate yourself!
Even though you’re away together, it’s always fun to meet new people and invite them in your lives. If the trip is meant to be intimate, that’s fine too. But even temporary interactions can do the trick. Bringing new personalities into your getaway creates new memories that you might not have had otherwise. Plus, it will bring you closer!
Follow these tips, and you’re guaranteed to enjoy new destinations with your partner in crime. Just remember that you’ll experience a lot of emotions, and not every single one will be positive. The difference is every hiccup can lead to something incredible. Every disagreement can bring a new understanding. Your love grows deeper. And you find a million new reasons why you love that person.
Traveling with the one you love creates memories that will last forever, and a foundation in your relationship that can get you through the toughest times. Most importantly, you will always look back on these moments together with a smile. And that is what makes your life outside of traveling, just as magical.
About the authors:
We are Erin and Erin, newly married husband and wife who left our comfortable lives and 9-5 jobs to live abroad in Austria! Surviving Europe is our way of taking you on this journey of leaving what we know behind to move abroad and explore Europe. Emotions, preparations, adjustments and of course the benefits of making this life change. With this information, we hope to inspire you to trust in yourself, take a chance and see the world! Follow our journey here: www.survivingeurope.com or on Instagram @SurvivingEurope and Facebook: Surviving Europe