Traveling is truly one of the most amazing things you can do with your spouse/partner. You will create memories that you will cherish forever. Gary and I will be married 39 years this November. We have a different history than most married couples and our friends often laugh about it.
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During the beginning of our marriage, Gary owned his own company and worked out of the house. It was a type of business that I could help with too. When our daughters got older, they even helped package product while we watched movies in the living room. Our friends couldn’t understand how we could be together 12/7 and still be friends. We worked together, we did PTA together, just about everything; together. Of course, we had our ups and downs as does every married couple but what about traveling together? Is it the same thing?
So the topic of this post is about traveling together. There are so many things to consider. In the past, we have taken two trips lasting 90-days each. To some couples, that could be a long time to be around each other 24/7.
So what is our little secret?
Do you know each other’s traveling style? Communicating that before and during any trip is a good idea. Do you have any expectations at any certain destination? Gary and I currently are on a one-year adventure through Italy and when we plan each segment of the trip we discuss it. What towns would we like to explore, what type of transportation are we going to use, discussions like these.
Teamwork is key. Marriage and traveling require teamwork. We divide the responsibilities between us. We both usually look for the apartment (long term stay) or hotel (short term visiting stay) but Gary is better at figuring out transportation. He looks up the train schedules and/or flights. Any successful relationship is a result of good teamwork. We have always worked well together.
When you travel with your partner, you get to face tons of experiences, obstacles, and challenges. Working together to work through these builds a stronger relationship. It is highly unlikely that during our year adventure we won’t run into an unforeseen event or situation. Will a bag get stolen or perhaps we might miss a train? Having someone by your side is easier to face these situations then facing them alone.
Traveling as a couple lets you share decision making and travel planning. It is more likely you will make good decisions when making them together; talking them through.
Love is the thing you revolve everything else around
I think it’s always good to do something alone especially if your partner isn’t interested in the same thing. Let’s say you love modern art and your partner does not? I know it would torture me to go to this type of gallery so why not let me go shopping and you go to the museum? I would suggest you do whatever it is you really want to. You don’t want to resent your partner. My time is usually spent on the computer working on the blog and upcoming posts while Gary enjoys reading. We are in the same room but doing two different things.
What should you discuss before the trip?
Whether home or traveling, one of the biggest subjects for disagreement is money. Since the beginning of time, most couples argue about money. A good idea would be to set up a budget with various categories before even leaving on your trip. What amount would be agreeable for food, entertainment, day trips to nearby towns? You should talk about the things you’re going to do before doing them.
Gary and I truly like the same things so we rarely have to compromise on things to see and do. But compromise can be something simple from agreeing on a restaurant to choosing the next town to visit. This to me is another key to a good marriage and happy travels.
Psychologists have said the best way to test compatibility is to take a trip with someone. The US Travel Association has also found that traveling couples are typically happier than non-traveling couples.
I realize Gary and I aren’t the “norm” when it comes to married couples but don’t be fooled; it has taken work. We are lucky that we have similar travel likes and dislikes. We also have learned that listening and being heard is a fundamental need in any relationship. Hope these few tips will help you on your next travel adventure with your special someone.