Some people are brave enough to go roaming the world with no-one for company. I’m not one of them! Besides, I would get bored travelling on my own. If, like me, you want to take a trip in company, then here are some tips for choosing a travel buddy that won’t drive you mad before you’ve even boarded the plane …
Before deciding to travel with someone, find out what their idea of a holiday is all about. A trip is doomed to failure if you are mad about culture but hate the beach, while your travel buddy just wants to spend all day working on their tan. So make sure that you have enough in common to enjoy travelling together.
It’s best to get to know your potential buddy well enough first, before the departure date. That person who seemed like fun at first may not be so great once you get to know them better. Whether it’s a two week trip or six months going around the world, you don’t want it to be ruined by realising that you really don’t enjoy their company.
Another essential is to check that your travel buddy has enough money to make the trip. You’ll be less than impressed if they run out of cash, or expect you to pay for everything because you earn more. Make sure that they can fully fund their own trip, and you don’t get stuck with their hotel bill.
Part of the fun of travelling is improvising, and doing something because the mood takes you or it looks like fun. So look for a travel partner with a reasonably flexible approach. Anyone who insists on sticking to a rigid itinerary or doing everything a certain way is likely to get on your nerves (unless you’re the same).
A successful trip needs a travel buddy who has much the same attitude as you do, both to the trip and to life. If they are too different, it’s not likely to work. A party animal that likes to be out til dawn is going to profoundly irritate a culture vulture who likes to hit the museums as soon as they open (and vice versa).
This may sound a bit too obvious, but choose someone that you actually like. You’re going to be in their company for possibly quite some time (or what may seem like it). Don’t decide to travel with someone simply because they’re available, or the trip may not be at all enjoyable – better to wait until you find the right person.
It may be hard to find, but you need someone who fulfils a balance. You want a travel buddy who is adventurous and willing to try something new, yet not too foolhardy. Someone who is levelheaded, but not scared of their own shadow. If they’re too extreme, the trip could turn out badly.
Okay travellers, we want to know all about your experiences. How did you pick your travel buddy – and did you end up with someone who turned it into the trip from hell?
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