My husband’s preference is to be a seat-of-his-pants traveler. He likes to get an idea and go. Reseverations? “Nah, we’ll find something when we get there.”
I, on the other hand, like some certainty – like a reservation at a hotel or campsite for at least the first night and a general idea of the sights we might visit and available activities. After that, I enjoy making each day up as I go, spattered with lots of time for reading and relaxing. I don’t like being on a schedule so I try to avoid that, but sometimes relent to the necessity for sight-seeing purposes.
A friend of mine must know exactly the what, where, how, and when of each moment of the trip. “Not a moment to lose. We might not ever be back this way. According to our schedule, we’re late. Let’s go!”
Imagine the potential for frustration if the three of us were traveling together?
Regardless of where you place yourself on the spectrum from a seat-of-your pants adventurer to a plan-every-moment tourist, when you are traveling with others, there’s bound to be the need for compromise to avoid frustration. Here are five questions to start the discussion.
- What kind of travel experience do you want?
This can range from “I want to see it all: historical sites, museums, theme parks, zoos, malls, etc.” to “I’m OK with a little sight-seeing but mostly, I just want to relax.”
- What mode of transportation and what kind of accommodations?
Car, air, train, boat, some combination? Hotel, bed and breakfast, camping – RV, tenting, etc. – stay with family and friends, some combination of all? Will reservations be made a head of time or on the fly?
- Do you want to explore on your own or do you prefer guided experiences?
Do you want to be scheduled or free to do whatever on the spur of the moment? Are you a morning person and therefore don’t mind pre-dawn departures, or are you a person who enjoys the night life and sleeping-in late?
- Do you want to travel ala first class or coach?
Do you expect to dine out every meal or will you economize by buying food and preparing your own breakfast and/or lunches?
- How do your travel companion’s (s) answers to the four previous questions compare with yours?
Do you have similar travel styles? If not, can compromises be made?
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