Choosing to go travelling with your best friend, sister or another family member may seem like the easiest way to go on a fabulous holiday, however many of us don’t know what kind of traveller we are until we’re already on the road, and by that time even the closest friends can encounter some trying situations.
Everyone has a different style of travelling or holidaying. Some people like to get off the beaten track while others like to lap up all the touristy things on offer. Some people are willing to pay top dollar for all their experiences, while others are a little thriftier. It’s important that you travel with a companion who has the same holiday style as you, otherwise you might find yourselves at odds with each other, arguing about whether or not to take that hike, or about the cost of entry to a tourist attraction.
5 questions to ask your travel buddy before you book a holiday
1. What is your ideal holiday?
This is a great first question to ask as it’ll give you an idea of whether your travel companion is happy to explore a city, shops, museums and other sights, or if they would prefer hiking the national parks and kayaking out to little known locations. There’s no point booking a two-week shopping and foodie trip to Paris if your travel buddy wants to explore rainforests and hike mountains.
2. How much do you want to spend on this holiday?
This question is important as it will give you a good indicator of whether your travel buddy is happy to splurge on a nice hotel, or whether they want to save money by staying in a budget hostel. It’s also a good time to ask about if they’re happy to pay entry fees to any locations or sights you want to see, and if they are happy to use public transportation, what their daily budget would be, etc.
3. Can we enjoy/endure each other’s undivided attention and company for days on end?
It’s important that you are fully comfortable around your travel companion and know each other well enough to understand when one person needs some alone time, and not take it personally. Travel often involves delayed flights, wrong turns, getting lost and waiting in long lines, so it’s important that you and your travel buddy get along well and know each other well enough that one bad mood won’t ruin an entire friendship.
4. Are you happy to adapt to new cultures and go with the flow?
Traveling to far off places that are thousands of miles away from your home means encountering different cultures, traditions, beliefs and laws. It’s important that you and your travel buddy are both comfortable engaging with, and being respectful towards, different people, cultures and laws. Nothing ruins a holiday quicker than trying to explain a misunderstanding to a police officer that doesn’t speak English because your travel buddy refused to abide by the local rules and regulations because they are different to those of your home.
5. Where do you want to go?
Last, but certainly not least, is the final question of ‘where do you want to go?’ You and your travel companion should want to visit similar places, see the same sights and be open to the same experiences. Spend some time discussing exactly where you want to go and what you want to do when you get there.
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