Not everyone is suited for travel. What is tougher is finding two people who can travel well together. What makes a good travel buddy? Here are a few things to look for. Where Are We Going
Some folks like the beach, others the mountains. I have had several friends ask us to join them on cruises to Alaska. To me, a cruise is sunshine, warm weather, bathing suits and Pina Coladas; throw in a reggae band around the pool and that’s a vacation. Freezing weather, coats and hot chocolate do not do it for me on a cruise. Obviously we would not be good travel buddies on an Alaskan cruise so I have respectfully declined. Don’t get me wrong, these friends had a great time on their Alaskan cruise, but part of that was because I wasn’t there whining about the weather, the coats, and where’s my Pina Colada. When Are We Going
You may be the perfect travel buddies but if your schedules don’t match, you have a problem. Some folks travel in the summer and some are too busy in the summer. Others want to travel when their kids are on summer vacation and others don’t want anything to do with kids. May and October are two of the best months to travel but if you or your friends have kids, that means missing school. I personally never had any qualms about missing school, but that’s a whole different story. When you go is as important as where you go on deciding if you are good travel buddies. How Much You Pay
Let’s face it: some people have more money available for vacations than others. That doesn’t mean you can’t travel together but if your buddy insists on 5 star resorts and you can’t afford it, you need a new travel buddy. A good buddy will be happy to go wherever as long as you both can go. A bad buddy insists on places you can’t afford. There are so many options that, with a good travel buddy, it shouldn’t be a problem. Flying High
Do you insist on a window seat? As long as your partner doesn’t care where he or she sits, you’re fine. Do you insist on arriving at the airport three hours early, while your partner is a last minute arrival? This can cause stress before the trip even starts. If you like to sleep and your buddy wants to party and talk, you have a problem too. Traveling together requires being on the same schedule. If you’re flying a red-eye and you stayed awake all day to sleep on the plane, make sure your buddy didn’t nap or he or she will be awake and wanting to chat; similar schedules equals good travel buddies. It’s Party Time
Some people drink heavily at the airport bar or on the plane, others not at all. Sometimes this makes for great travel buddies because one can get the other there safely, and then drink to their hearts content once you arrive at your destination. Not to name names, but I’m the destination drinker; I get us there, then watch out. If your travel buddy parties way more than you do, you may end up playing babysitter a little too much and that will spoil your trip. Consider this when deciding who your travel buddy will be. Compromise Only Goes So Far
If you go to bed early but your travel buddy parties all night long, that could spell trouble. If you want to get up and go in the morning and your buddy is sleeping until noon, that’s not a good match. Some people want to lie around the beach all week and some want to do every excursion possible. A good travel buddy compromises and you should too. There’s no reason you can’t relax and be on the go, you just have to work it out and do a little of both. That’s what travel buddies do.
Michael Ryan Michael is a full-time musician and freelance writer residing in Morrison, Colorado. He enjoys downhill skiing, traveling and attempting to play golf. He excels in the sport of extreme napping so if you must call, make it afternoon.
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