HOW TO TRAVEL WITH FRIENDS, EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW
Missed flights, dodgy accommodation and stolen wallets can make travelling really, really stressful. Throw friends and different personalities into the equation and all of a sudden what is already a bad situation can get worse, or better. I will admit I’m not always the easiest person to travel with. I like to be highly organised and sometimes forget to ‘go with the flow’ for fear of missing out on something I really want to see or do. Over the years I’ve learned to relax but in saying that, I couldn’t travel with someone who doesn’t have a plan.
There certainly will be moments where I get frustrated or annoyed with my friends on the road, especially when we are constantly in each other’s company. It’s all about finding the perfect buddy to see the world with as travel can really test friendships. But don’t let that deter you – travelling with friends is extremely fun and easily the nest memories and experiences I’ve had have been with friends.
If you’re planning on embarking on the trip of a lifetime, here are a few of my tips on how to travel with friends, which will help lessen any tension or frustrations.
CHOOSE WISELY Choose your travel friends wisely. Pick a friend who you love spending a lot of time with and who you enjoy doing a variety of things together.
SET EXPECTATIONS Set expectations before you book your trip. Ask your friends and yourself what you want out of the trip. Do you want to party? Do you want to see the sights? Do you want to eat at really good restaurants? Make sure you have the majority of interests aligned, but also keep in mind that some of the best experiences are gained by friends having different interests.
BE HONEST ABOUT YOUR BUDGET Be honest with your friends from the offset and tell them how much you can afford – it can be a sensitive topic whilst travelling. There is nothing worse than travelling with a friend when you’re on a strict budget and they’re rolling in it. They’ll want to spend up and you won’t be able to, so make sure you and your travel buddy have similar budgets.
SHARE YOUR PACKING LIST Create a shared packing list to make sure you and your friend don’t double up on items. I am part of the Microsoft #WorkWonders influencer campaign and use OneNote to jot down my packing list and share it on OneDrive so my friends can see what I am packing. They then write down what they’re packing and send it back so we can eliminate and add in other items.
DO SPEND SOME TIME APART Spending time apart is totally ok, especially if it means you get to do or see something you really want to when your friend doesn’t. Just make sure you stay safe – share your plans, stay in touch and have a meeting point.
DAILY ROUTINE I am a serious morning person so travelling with someone who likes to sleep in wouldn’t work for me. And vice versa. So make sure your travel buddy has the same daily routine.
STAY IN TOUCH WITH FAMILY If you start feeling a little homesick, you can always Skype your family back home. It’s the best seeing their faces and being able to talk to them. It’s the perfect pick-me-up!
BE CONSIDERATE It’s super important to be considerate of your needs, and your friends needs when you’re globetrotting. Don’t hog the bathroom, keep your belongings neat and tidy, and be respectful when your friend wants to go to sleep.
COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE Communicate is the key to travelling with friends. Know when to give your travel buddies space but also ask when they need help or if anything is bothering them. Don’t be defensive, work it out so you can all have a great time.
SHARE THE RESPONSIBILITY Don’t let one person do everything – share the responsibility and use each other’s strengths. One of my friends is amazing at map reading, another is really good at booking accommodation and flights, another loves finding really good restaurants and I love researching/planning.
This post is in collaboration with Microsoft Australia #WorkWonders. Concept and thoughts are my own.