Travel is terribly romantic. There is something magical about exploring, adventuring, and creating lasting memories with your significant other. You will watch breathtaking sunsets and taste delicious foods. You will see beautiful landscapes and party the nights away in exciting cities. But travel is not always all romance. Travel can be extremely real. You will get caught in torrential downpours and you will be exhausted and frustrated after sitting on a hot, smelly bus for sixteen hours. But that is also where all the fun memories and best stories to take home originate. Taking a trip together for the first time is a big deal and will certainly teach you things about your partner that you may not have previously known. There is nothing like travel to bring out a person’s true colors. But, a couple that travels well together, is a couple that works well together. So, when taking your first big trip with your lover, be sure to do these ten things to maximize the loving parts and minimize the stressful fights on your romantic and adventurous getaway:
10 Prepare For The Elements
Depending on where you choose for your vacation, there will be a plethora of elements waiting for you when you arrive. Maybe there will be unbearable heat or cold, maybe there will be rainy, foggy weather, or maybe there will be dangerous animals lurking in the forest. Make sure that you pick a place that you can both tolerate and, of course, enjoy! If heat makes your lover cringe, than it may be best to shy away from traveling to tropical locations. If nothing else, at least be prepared for a cranky and moody partner as you wander through hot and humid climates. So when planning your vacation, prepare for all the elements that may arise to make sure you both will have a pleasant time enjoying each other’s company rather than complaining about the rain.
9 Sleep Enough
Sleep deprivation is a disastrous recipe for fights. Of course it’s exciting when traveling together and you’ll want to stay up all night partying and then wake up early to fully take advantage of the day. Be cautious not to do this one too many times which may lead to some ugly, unwanted confrontations. If you’re going to stay up late one night, sleep in late the next day and do the reverse for the following days to take advantage of both day and night life activities where you travel. But just be sure that whatever is happening, you wake up feeling refreshed and energized so you can have fun together without feeling cranky and getting on each other’s nerves.
8 Make New Friends
Of course you’re going to want to spend some romantic quality time together on your first big vacation together. But, you’ll want to make new friends together as well! Having shared friends is both a wonderful bonding experience and a fun new way to explore a location. Meet some locals or fellow travelers and discover a hidden beach together. Jump on motorbikes and cruise the coastline. Take advantage of some new opinions to break the potential monotony of your trip, and try things outside of your comfort zone that your new friends may suggest. Go ziplining or cliff jumping all the while bonding together and as part of a group to create mutual connections that can last forever.
7 Become Comfortable With Silence
When you’re together with your partner all day everyday, you will certainly encounter some moments of silence. You will have exhausted every topic of conversation and will eventually run out of things to say. And that is totally okay! In fact, it shows just how comfortable you are together: that you can speak through silence and you can be totally relaxed around each other. When you no longer feel the urge to “fill silence,” you know you’ve reached a milestone in your relationship. Riding long train or bus rides together will invite you to sit together quietly and just enjoy each other’s presence in silence. Women’s Health Magazine claims that being comfortable in silence together is a big hurdle in your relationship, and it truly is. It’s a beautiful point when your relationship reaches this level of comfort and travel, more than anything else, will draw this out of your bond.
6 Learn The Art Of Compromise
Be tolerant of each other’s preferences. You may hate ethnic cuisine, but your partner may want to sample the local food. You may be dying to ride elephants, but your partner may be more keen to surf. Bustle cleverly suggests while you’re traveling with your significant other: carefully pick your battles. Not everything is worth a fight and you should always keep in mind that you are both trying to enjoy yourselves. So, if you want to do something and your partner wants to do the opposite, then meet somewhere in the middle with a reasonable compromise, or…
5 Carve Out Alone Time
Of course you want to spend the majority of your time on your first vacation as a couple together. But, everyone also needs his or her own time alone. As you’ll be spending basically all day everyday together, you may want to consider blocking out some time in which you each do your own thing. Whether that means splitting up and heading with your new friends to go scuba diving, while your partner, who is afraid, goes snorkeling instead or whether that means just taking an hour to go sit by the pool and read your book while your lover takes a nap. Whatever the case may be for you and your significant other, find small chunks of time to spend on your own so you don’t drive each other crazy. You want to still be in love with each other’s company by the time you make it back home, so that may mean taking small little breaks from each other to keep things light and upbeat.
4 Plan Activities
Make big plans together and try what it is that your partner absolutely loves. If your significant other is a big hiker and you’ve never really tried, then why not take an epic trek up a mountain? You may find that you absolutely love it. If you’ve been dying to go ziplining but your lover is afraid of heights, ask them to give it a try. They may be surprised by how much fun they have. Plan and share your favorite activities together and plan some new activities that you’ve both never tried. Fill your days with all sorts of fun happenings, but, of course, don’t forget to…
3 Be Spontaneous
On a romantic trip away, there is nothing better than spontaneity. Take a wild moonlit dance in the rain. Hitchhike down the coast to a concert you just heard about. Jump on a plane to the neighboring country. Crash a cultural festival you didn’t know was happening and join the party. Find an underground jazz bar and stay up all night taking shots with the locals who don’t speak a word of your language. Sleep in way past the alarm and cuddle all morning. Skip your dinner reservations to catch the sunset on the beach. Go skinny-dipping in the ocean. Of course, plan lots of exciting and fun adventures together, but be sure to keep enough free time for plenty of spontaneity and impulsive, spur-of-the-moment decisions for fun.
2 Set A Budget & Stick To It
The topic of money is not necessarily the most romantic conversation starter. However, when traveling with your partner, you will absolutely want to clearly establish budgets and stick to them so the issue of money (or not enough!) will never arise. Travel blog, Off The Path, very smartly suggests that you should plan your budget based around the income of the lower earning partner. That way no one feels pressured or embarrassed about money issues. Pick a destination, accommodation, and restaurants that you can both afford. And, if possible, try to split the bill down the middle. Keep the issue of money off of both of your minds, by establishing and sticking to your budget, so that you don’t have to feel stressed about spending your life savings and living off ramen for a month when you get back home.
When you’re away you are, of course, going to want to contact friends and family back home to let them know you’re safe, and send beautiful photos to make them terribly jealous. But, try to avoid spending excess time on your phone or computer (better yet leave your computer at home!) so that you can really be present in the moment and be present with your partner. Spend as much time as you can possibly bear away from your devices and detached from the wifi to fully enjoy being with your lover in your couple’s paradise. Your partner will be grateful for your undivided attention and you will be grateful that you didn’t miss a moment while posting a photo to Facebook. Instead, you will make a longer lasting memory in your mind with your lover. And that is worth far more than a billion likes.