December 5, 2012

Are You Two Matched for Travel?

My husband and I just got back from a long trip. For much of our travel, we worked on the road, but there was one week where I was able to take in this:

Acropolis in Athens, Greece
...and this:
Sunset in Istanbul, Turkey

...and eat LOTS of this:

Chocolate + Pistachios = Heaven
Because my husband and I both enjoy traveling, I figured I'd have to determine early in our relationship whether we weren't just compatible as every day companions but also as travel buddies.
Have you ever been on a trip with someone who's just awful at traveling? The chances of having a bad match are endless: The planny-planner type vacationing with the go-with-the-flow lounger. The efficient packer with the luggage-lugging counterpart. The hostel-hopper with the five-star aficionado.

So how can you tell if your chosen companion will mesh with your travel type?

Notice how you two mesh on late-night dates:
Traveling around the world or even state-to-state is bound to cause each of you to become tired at some point. One way to determine how you two will cope with each other's weary behavior is to pay attention when you're both up a little later than you anticipated. Of course, everyone seems to be on their best behavior in those early dating stages - and staying up late and sacrificing sleep usually means you can't get enough of each other's presence. But what about those days when you're dragging? Pay attention to your partner. Does he seem like a grumpy bear who just needs a nap? Does she seem a little too out-of-control? Tired traveling can bring out the worst in each of us, so decide now if you're up to handling your partner at his worst when you're at yours.

Plan a day together:
One key factor in traveling well as a couple is planning (or not planning). Schedule a day together. See how well you two work together in the planning stages and in those times when your plans fall through. While you're on your day-long date, notice how often the two of you need to stop for food. Some people tend to graze (like me) while others tend to like three square meals (like my husband). When traveling together, you'll need to make sure each of you gets fed and fueled to keep you moving.

Take a practice trip:
Plan a weekend trip that's a few hours from your home. You'll get to see how the two of you deal with being in a contained space like a bus, car, or plane for several hours. Plus, you'll see how the two of you deal with being away from home for a while. You might also get a glimpse into your partner's world of quirks, like whether they need to clean the house before heading out of town. (Which is a quirk of mine that I will defend for the rest of my life. There's nothing like coming back from a trip to a clean house!)

Happy dating!
And Bon Voyage!



Anonymous said...

I think a per-marriage road trip is a must! I think the road trip should have at least 4-6 hours of driving. In that amount of time you should have gone through your mixed tapes and light conversation. Then you start to see how well they REALLY travel.

Michal said...

Yes! Cleaning the house is part of the packing and readying portion of the trip! Great advice. (And Anonymous just betrayed her age with "mixed tapes". We had a few of those on my first road trip with Jared, but we don't even have a car that will play mix tapes anymore!)

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