Choosing the Right Travel Partner

Sharing your travel experiences with someone can be very enriching, but be careful of who you choose to travel with.  Your travel partner might make or break your long earned for holiday!  Here are some factors to take into consideration when choosing a travel partner:

Consideration in your travel partner

When thinking about a travel partner, you might want to choose someone that you know are considerate.  That does not imply that the person must be a total pushover.  But only that he/she is able to think of others and not only of themselves.   One of the worst kind of travel partners is a selfish one.  It is almost a guarantee that you will leave your travel destination with some regrets about things you haven’t done.

So you want a travel partner that is able to sit down with you and negotiate your individual needs for the day, without making use of emotional blackmail or coercing.  It is also important that you know the person will be considerate to both fellow travellers and locals.  You, for instance, don’t want a travel companion that irritates everyone on the plane or at airport security when they are holding up the line.  As a conclusion, you want someone that naturally respects themselves and others.

A travel partner with the necessary interpersonal skills

It’s not something that one thinks of immediately as a prerequisite for a travel companion.  But have you ever thought about how awkward it could be when you are frequently embarrassed by your friends’ lack of social finesse?  This can include a number of behaviours and situations.  Some include eating inappropriate food or chewing loudly on an airplane or talking too loudly in inappropriate situations.

You need someone that are sensitive to social skills and nuances.  Some people just can’t keep their judgments or comments to themselves.  Or they feel it is their duty to comment on everything.  It’s not just about the way they talk about the country you are visiting, but also the way they talk about your fellow travellers.  Your chosen travel partner need the interpersonal skills to realize that people differ and therefore their needs and wants to differ.  This will result in them going about their holiday in a different manner, and that is okay.  No-one likes a pretentious traveller.

Have the same expectations about your trip

Having different expectations about your holiday could end up in a potential disaster!  One person might want to party every night and use the days to recuperate, whilst the other person would like to visit museums and different local attractions.  Some of the usual things people want from their holiday include relaxing and enjoying the beach; adventure activities like hiking and bungee jumping; exploring historical sites or getting to know the local people and joints.  Make sure you know what your potential fellow traveller expect from a holiday.

Your degree of flexibility

Some people are more flexible than others when it comes to their daily routine and planning.  A potential disaster is if you put a laid back ‘go-with-the-flow’ kind of guy, together with someone with obsessive compulsive characteristics!  If you tend to get anxious quickly, consider going on a more structured pre-arranged holiday.  This, however, will be frustrating to someone that likes to explore and do things on the spur of the moment.

The ability to laugh it off

The ability to laugh it off will be one of the best virtues of your travel companion, especially if things start to go wrong.  Very often, travellers misunderstand language, customs, and structures that lead to mistakes or even just to a person feeling ashamed.  Instead of dropping your head in shame, though, it is best to laugh it off.  That way you will make the trip more enjoyable to yourself and others.

Last thoughts

While you take the above-mentioned factors into account when choosing your travel partner, be sure to look at your own personality and behaviour as well.  You don’t want to be that one guy or girl nobody wants to travel with.

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