Travel with your partner without killing each other!
Sure, couples who travel together, stay together.
It's can be romantic, adventurous, and exciting. But when you're together 24/7, things won't always be so utopian, especially when you're traveling in a foreign country and confusion, anxiety, and stress arises.
Let's face it, we're all human, we're not perfect. Things happen and tempers rise, you can't obviously pretend that every trip you take with your partner is going to be perfect.
I remember one of the worst feuds we had while traveling was in Singapore when he booked a room at a hostel that was so small, dark, uncomfortable and completely out of his norm, I was livid that he wasn't as diligent as he usually is when booking a room for us. Let me be clear, the room he booked for us was like a jail cell. It was like a 10 x 10 room, with 2 sets of bunkbeds, barely any room for our luggages (backpacks). The door to our room barely opened because the beds were in the way. Because of this, we literally fought (more like I pouted like a spoiled brat) the entire first day we arrived to this amazing city. Looking back, yes, I overreacted but to my defense (give me a break, ok?), it was towards the end of our 16 day travel through Southeast Asia, and I just wanted to be comfortable.
So how do you avoid the risk of having your trip ruined by disagreements? Here are some tips:
TIP #1 PATIENCE!
Easy, right? Everyone believes they are the most patient person in the world. Yeah, right. Let's be real, we all have tempers, especially when things don't go your way. There's a reason why you are with your partner, it probably isn't because you love fighting with them. So why not practice a little patience. Whenever I feel my temper rise, because I'm a woman and our hormones are pretty much like an unlit firework, I try to just step away for awhile. I look ahead and think about how I want to remember the trip and then once I've calmed down a bit, I go back and talk it out with my partner (see Tip #6).
TIP #2 COMPROMISE
If something doesn't go your way, COMPROMISE. Chances are, if the two of you come to an agreement that will somewhat satisfied both your needs, you will come out of the situation a lot happier than you did if you had just been stubborned about it.
TIP #3 TAKE TIME APART
If you are traveling for long periods of time, there will come a time when you and your partner will get on each others nerves. So why not seek out activities that you would like to partake in but you know your partner would not, this way it gives both of you the opportunity do things you both want to do without feeling the guilt for doing it anyway or the regret for not ever having experienced it. If I want to get a cheap massage in Cambodia for $3.00, knowing my partner doesn't, I tell him why not go explore a bar with some good beer (he loves beer) and cheap cocktails. This way I don't feel pressured to always be consuming alcohol just because he would like to imbibe a little more than I do, plus I get my cheap little massage and relax for awhile.
tip #4 be flexible
Don't be stubborn. Period. Everyone has their stubborn ways but when you are in a relationship, you acknowledge that you are willing to take that person's needs and wants into consideration. Don't always be so set in your own ways, listen to what your partner wants and try to understand the Why behind it. If you are planning on a multi city trip and you come to a disagreement on what cities/countries you want to visit, sit down with your partner and work out the pros and cons. Being flexible means you will come to a compromise that you will both enjoy (see Tip #2).
tip #5 Communicate!
Communicate! Communicate! Communicate! I hate to say this, Ladies, the silent treatment doesn't work! And to the Men, listen and don't assume! One of the main issues in relationships, not just in travels, is lack of communication. When one person assumes or expects something in particular or arguments arise due to lack of communication, it can certainly be a relationship killer! So please practice communication. If you want to visit the Red Light District in Amsterdam but you know your partner has absolute no desire for it, do not just plan a day trip there in hopes that s/he will just get over her disapproval and enjoy it anyway.
What are some of your tips for traveling with a partner? Comment below!