Couples Travel – 9 Essential Tips to Survive Your First Trip
Travel Tips for Couples
With Valentine’s day quickly approaching, love is in the air. When you’re in a new relationship, the first trip as a couple can be daunting. Traveling with your significant other can create special memories that deepen your connection, but it also has the potential to end in disaster. Here are some tips to help you keep the fun alive and the drama at bay.
1. Communicate During Planning
If you’re in a new relationship, now isn’t the time to pretend you really like snowboarding when you can’t stand the cold. You both need to be part of the planning process so that everyone is on the same page and no one ends up miserable. Be open and honest. If the proposed travel idea isn’t your cup of tea, it’s much better to hash it out beforehand.
2. Choose a Destination That Excites You Both
Set yourselves up for success. Choose a destination that piques your curiosity and has you both excited to explore together. You can both make a list of your top 3 choices and hopefully have a match. If not, maybe those places have a common theme that will open up a conversation to reach a compromise. In the end, it’s no fun if one person is making all of the choices. Choose a destination that excites you both and you’ll be off to a great start.
3. Go With The Flow
Things will happen. Don’t stress. Try to roll with the punches. Travel smart and be prepared, but please pack your patience. Delays happen, luggage gets lost, and things may not turn out as you’d hoped. I promise you’ll get through it much easier if you can laugh it off.
When my boyfriend and I arrived in Tokyo, we walked into the room and it was so small we could barely walk through to the other end. We were shocked to find that we could barely store our carry-on sized luggage and still have room to walk around. It was very similar to a tiny dorm room without the top bunk bed and nothing at all like the pictures. We laughed so hard at the tiny space we had to call home. We made it work and the tiny room quickly became the butt of every joke. What could’ve been a cranky situation ended up being a funny story we still laugh about.
4. Laugh Off Embarrassing Moments
Don’t take yourself too seriously. Awkward moments happen when you’re out of your element. I was traveling back home to San Diego through the Havana airport in Cuba with my boyfriend, and we had just cleared security. I was walking down the stairs towards the gates and I somehow slipped and completely fell down the stairs. It made the loudest noise and the stairs actually shattered into pieces. Awkward! Instead of being mad or frustrated I just got up and shook it off. I wasn’t injured, so we laughed it off, and I even posed for a picture with the shattered pieces on the floor. The Cuban security just looked over and saw that I was ok and went on about their business. I officially left my mark on Havana. If you see these stairs after clearing security on your way home from Havana, that was me. Whoopsie! 🙂
5. Create a Joint Bucket List
Men and women can sometimes have very different ideas as to what sounds like fun when traveling as a couple. When my boyfriend and I travel together, we like to make individual lists of items we would like to experience in that region. We both research fun things to do and at the end, we combine our lists to make the “Master List” as a guide. It’s fun to see the different perspectives and combine our top choices. After we both have our “musts” covered, we use Google maps to see if there is anything else on the list nearby in the same neighborhood. We have been able to add a few more items easily this way, and everyone is happy.
6. Leave Room For Compromise
If your boyfriend really wants to go deep sea fishing and it’s truly his dream, then go for it, even if you aren’t interested. The joy in his face will make you happy and he will be much more likely to enjoy horseback riding with you along the beach afterward. Keep an open mind and support each other.
7. Extend Your Budget
Traveling as a couple can get expensive if you’re staying at a hotel and dining out every meal. Save money by getting accommodation on Airbnb or VRBO. You’ll likely have a kitchen to prepare small meals. You can take your time waking up with your love and even enjoy breakfast in bed together. Pack some fruit for daytime snacks so you can splurge on fancy dinners without the guilt. Save money traveling with my resources page.
8. Be Overprepared
Have a busy day planned? Be prepared for that, especially if one of you has a tendency to get angry when they are hungry. Don’t let being “hangry” ruin your day. Pack snacks and water for outings so you don’t get irritable. Always make sure the camera is charged and ready to go. Pack a portable phone charger as well. This has saved me more than once. Always pack your swimsuit just in case. You never know when you’ll stumble upon some gorgeous beach or refreshing pool that you need to take advantage of.
Disconnect with the world and connect with your partner. Your friends and family can wait until later to see your beautiful pictures. Be present and stay in the moment. Being away together allows you to connect on a deeper level that you would at home. Have fun, make memories and cherish each other. Keep phones and social media to a minimum and enjoy this time together.
What tips would you add? Let me know in the comments!
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