Thursday, March 10, 2016

6 Tips for Traveling with your Significant Other

Whether you've been married for years, just started dating, or even if you live with someone, extended periods of travel & their sometimes unique situations can be stressful. Especially if you & your partner don't handle them the same way. But, I've found a few tips // tricks to help take some of the stress out of traveling with your partner, and wanted to pass them on to you! I'd love for you to leave a comment with your own tips for not strangling your partner!

Some background info : The BF & I do not live together, but have been together about a year & a half. We'd been on long weekend getaways & a mini road trip or two, but never embarked on a true vacation together. Certainly not one 10 days long & certainly not anything international. While I hate to say I bet on us to fight, I'll admit I thought we would have some bumps & bruises along the way. I was pleasantly surprised when our big "fight" was over a $25 // person continental breakfast, which won't bankrupt us, but seriously, who agrees to pay that much for English Muffins & some yogurt. Sigh, men.

Here are a few tips that helped the BF & I arrive home without strangling each other.

| side note | I've added a button that will allow you to hover & pin directly from a specific image. If you find this post helpful I would love to have you Pin it!



1. Identify your travel styles
I am go, go, go. I want to see & do everything I can. Even if that means waking up early & going to bed late. Is your partner the same way? Or are they the lay on the beach type? This also may determine the type of vacation you might enjoy. I could never plan to spend a whole week lounging at the beach. I would go crazy. Others head to the beach every year.

2. Identify your must-see sights // activities
The BF & I prioritized on our own & then came together to go over each others lists. We only had a few things each, he wanted to fish, I wanted to kayak. Actually, in the end, we did neither of those two things. We were just too short on time & found there were other things we both agreed on, like HIKING!

3. Plan around your weaknesses
I am a terrible, horrible, monster of a person when I am hungry. I admit it. So, I put myself on snack duty. This included snacks for the trip + any in-country provisions. Picking up the things for sandwiches + some snacks was a great idea. Not only was it quick when we needed something ASAP, but we saved quite a bit of $$$ when our only food options sucked. By taking control of a solution, I was able to substantially mitigate the risk of a Hanger Outburst.

If one of you sucks at something, while the other doesn't, plan accordingly. I'm not a fan of carrying cash, so I left that to the BF. His memory is like a sieve when it comes to remembering dates & times without a calendar. Since our Google Calendars app adjusted oddly to the date // time change I became in charge of making sure we were in the right place @ the right time.

4. Money, money, money
If you're traveling & married half of your headache may be eliminated, assuming your finances are shared. But there's always the question of spending habits. Are you on a strict budget? Are you spending willy nilly anytime you see something you might want? Or are you a mix of pre-planned splurges & saving where you can?

The BF & I decided to take $400 cash & put all other expenses on my credit card. I have a card with ZERO foreign transaction fees (Barclaycard Travel Rewards card, which I would recommend if you're looking for a rewards card). We saved the cash for smaller things, usually under $10 & in case we ended up somewhere that did not accept cards. Towards the end we had quite a bit left so we ramped up our cash usage to avoid having to convert back to USD$. We plan to split everything down the middle. He had the initial cash outlay, so we'll deduct that from whatever he might owe from my CC bill.

Luckily, we're both fairly thrifty people. We don't mind spending $ to get something nice, but random impulse buys are not our thing. We splurged on a Valentine's Day date...11 days late, but better late than never, which included a delicious dinner & gondola ride to a gorgeous city view.

5. Get travel insurance
The BF & I booked our New Zealand adventure NINE months before departure. Which means at that time, we had been dating a little over 8 months. Planning ahead for longer than we had been together? What are we, crazy? A little bit, yes. But, for a bit of extra $$$ (under $100) we were able to purchase travel insurance. Not only would this cover medical issues while abroad, but we also included coverage that would allow us to cancel the trip for any reason & receive a refund. I jokingly referred to it as our "anti-breakup insurance", but it worked & eliminated a big question of what if something went wrong. Even if you're married travel insurance covers things like lost baggage, missed connections, natural disasters & can include health coverage as well.

| side note | I love SquareMouth for travel insurance. They do not actually provide plans, but rather, allow you to input your travel details & level of desired coverage & can compare dozens of quotes in an easy to use format, allowing you to purchase right on their site.

6. Spend time alone
Easier said than done when you're sharing a hotel room & rental car, I get it. But, you don't necessarily have to be separate in order to spend time alone. Taking a few minutes of silence during the car ride or a few minutes to scroll through our phones // pictures from the day were sometimes a welcome reprieve. One night I browsed the gift shops while the BF spent some time playing roulette at the local (and smallest I've ever seen) casino.

Do you and your partner have similar travel styles?
What's your favorite travel tip?
Where are you heading on your next vacation!?

I'm linking up with Amanda as I share my tips // tricks today.

13 comments:

  1. Great tips! I'm a monster when hungry too and always have granola bars in my purse when traveling. It definitely helps keep peace :)

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    1. Glad I'm not the only one. It's such a simple solution to a real big problem too!

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  2. I have to laugh at this because my husband & I are HORRIBLE at traveling together. We can't even make it to nashville (3 hrs away) without at LEAST one fight.. if not two... or three

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    1. Oh no! I'm so surprised by that. You two seem so good natured & easy going (with my limited knowledge from the Internet & all)

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  3. Planning around your weaknesses and remembering just how gracious and patient I have to be has been one of the best learning experiences of any travels I've done. :)

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    1. Yes. Remembering I was on vacation & wanted nothing but a great experience was a good reminder that the little things don't matter.

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  4. These are great tips and the Mr. and I use a lot of them. I get really mean when I'm hungry. I actually plan places to stop and enjoy snacks. We like to do foodie things when we travel and stopping for snacks makes it fun because we don't have to commit to a whole meal at a place we want to try.

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    1. I would definitely say the BF & I are foodies. But I've never thought to plan out multiple stops to let us try more places. I'll look into that!

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  5. Traveling with my husband the first time was definitely an experience. He is a pilot so really low key about things where I get stressed about everything. This is such a great post that any couple should read!

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    1. Thanks Hollie! That sounds like the BF & I a bit too. He is super even-keeled & it takes a lot to get him stressed or flustered. All it takes for me is getting a little bit hungry. Haha.

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  6. I knew that Dan was the one for me when we went on our first week long trip together and I didn't get tired of him for one minute! I think every couple should have to leave the country for a week before they can get married. If you can get through that you can get through anything ;)

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    1. Yes! That's exactly how I felt on this trip Gretchen! I already knew, but the validation that I didn't get sick of the man was nice to have & nice to know he felt the same.

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  7. love this post :) i will have to check out square mouth as i'd not heard of them before.
    so KC and I are obviously married, and we share finances, but we have completely different spending habits, not to mention planning habits. it took a couple of years and trips for me to fully understand him and .. no manipulate him lol but i know now how to alleviate his stress. for example, he hates spending money and is always scared we are going to come back with nothing, so i budgeted a certain amount and kept track of every single expense using an app on my phone.. it was definitely tedious, but when he freaked out i could whip out my phone and show him exactly what we had spent vs budgeted, and he calmed down. i'm not trying to talk down about him haha i just know that is what he is like. also, i love to plan and talk about travel, he does not. at all. AT ALL. haha. it took me a long time to realise this, i always thought he hated travelling but he doesn't (thank goodness). he enjoys it when we are doing it, just not talking/planning. so now i basically i talk to him a little bit (so, cruise in june sound good? he says yep, i ask for budget estimate and off i go) and then plan the rest myself. it works well because i obviously love to plan. on the other hand, i get stressed out easily when we travel, so i plan everything but he 'does' everything. he gets us where we need to go, he reads the maps, talks to people, decides where to eat (because i am far too indecisive). so we balance each other out. wow, what a ramble. love this post!

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