No matter how long you have been in a relationship, there eventually comes a time when you decide that you want to travel together. Travel, in general, can be a rather daunting experience, but when you add in a relationship, traveling as a couple can be even more stressful, but there are tips that you can follow that can help you plan the best trip possible, have fun, and come home still loving each other.
In order to go on a vacation or explore any new destination with your partner, you have to make a solid plan of action. This plan starts from the moment you choose where you are going, until the time you get back home.
Perhaps the most important aspect of traveling with your partner for the first time is picking a destination that you both want to visit. Whether you are engaging in international travel, visiting a different city in your own state, or going somewhere else in the country, it is important to go somewhere that you both agree on. Maybe you want to each come up with a list of places you want to visit and then compare the lists, if your list offers some of the same places, choose one that stands out where you can both have a good time and do something new together. Compromise is important and talking to each other about what you want to see and do will give you a start to build off of when it comes to actually planning your first trip.
Once you have picked a destination and decided what types of activities you want to engage in, both together and on your own, it is time to make a thorough plan of action. This means figuring out what your budget is going to be for things like meals and activities, as well as for the overall trip itself. While it may be important to leave flexibility when it comes to scheduling a vacation, for the first trip as a couple, planning things out can keep things organized in such a way that you both have the best time possible.
Remember when you are planning out your budget, that often times one partner may not have as much money as the other. In order to make things fair and fun, your travel budget should be based on what the person with less money can afford. Don’t make your partner feel bad about what they bring to the table and it is important that you both remember the magic word, compromise. However, if the partner with more money insists on certain accommodations that the partner with less money may not be able to afford, then this is the time when the person with a bigger budget should step up and pay any monetary differences without complaint or resentments. Money can be a very polarizing topic and the last thing anyone wants is to have something like paying the difference in hotel costs thrown in their face in a future fight.
As I keep pointing out, compromise is important in any relationship, and when it comes to traveling as a couple, it is especially critical. When you are in the planning stages of your travel, this is when compromise is key because this way you know before you leave what you are getting out of this vacation, without any surprises popping up and causing drama and stress.
When you are preparing for your trip and getting the packing done, remember to set some boundaries. The last thing you want is to lug around excess stuff that neither of you needs nor will end up using. No matter what kind of trip you go on, remember to pack accordingly and take into account the fact that you may want to bring something home to remember your first real adventure together. Over-packing can lead to unnecessary stress, and you need to remember that less stress is the goal of a trip as a couple.
Remember that this is supposed to be about having fun with your partner. Try something new with them. Give a new experience a chance and enjoy the time you are spending together away from your everyday life. Plus, it is important not to expect too much from your partner or to demand a certain sort of behavior. Remember that new environments can be stressful, so the way your partner reacts to things may not be exactly what you expected. The more you travel together, the easier it will be to get used to your partner's idiosyncrasies.
Ultimately, traveling as a couple is all about connecting in a new environment and experiencing something new together. Have fun, remember to compromise, and know that having a plan of action can save a lot of stress and problems once you are off on this new adventure.
Photo by Thomas Hassel via Flickr