Compromising with your travel partner

Choosing travel companions can make or break a trip. There is a saying that traveling with friends is a good way to loose them. I have been lucky in the past to find a great friend or two to travel with, and even luckier to marry my perfect companion (in travel and life).  Here are a few tips to help make a trip work for you:

If your travel companions are friends, make sure that either expectations are set ahead of time, or that you are traveling with people who are up for anything. Maybe you are the one up for anything.  If so, good for you, but that is not me. For example, if one person is expecting to stay at a five star resort and the other is desiring budget travel, someone is going to have to give. If you can't meet in the middle, consider that the trip may end up being more trouble than it is worth.

If the travel companion is your spouse, consider taking turns choosing locations and planning trips.  That way each person gets a chance to see their desired location and one person isn't doing all the work. Some couples learn that it is healthier for their marriage to take separate vacations, or to work in some trips that don't include their spouse. If you managed to marry someone who doesn't like to travel.... I don't have a tip for that...

If you find yourself in conflict with your travel partner(s), going to separate corners for a while until things cool off may save your trip.  If you love museums but the rest of your group is only interested in outdoor activities, everyone will have more fun spending the days doing what they like best and then perhaps meeting up for dinner at the end of the day.   Again, this is where a little foresight comes in handy.  Who wants to waste time and money on a vacation they can't enjoy?

Admittedly, it's slightly disingenuous of me to blog about "compromising," since this isn't really my strong point.  When I was single, I had a few friends whose company made trips to places like Greece and Japan much more enjoyable. I even successfully navigated a few family vacations, but the key to success was generally that the trips were to places I was familiar with, so my agenda was not as ambitious as usual.  I married one of the few people who will travel with me on a regular basis. Before I met my husband, I often traveled by myself. Other than the slight awkwardness of eating in restaurants alone, the trips were enjoyable and I didn't have to worry about incorporating any priorities other than my own. One downside to consider is personal security, so if you are a woman traveling alone, consider narrowing your locations to areas favorable to such travel. As with other ventures in life, it is better to travel alone than with the wrong people.

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