10 Tips For Choosing A Travel Companion
Travelling is a novel experience that widens one's perspective about life. Someone who feels a sense of wanderlust cannot contain themse...
1. Match your travel ambition
There are different kinds of travelers. For example, we have the adventurous traveler, the pleasure traveler, the religious traveler, the let's go traveler and so on. Having a conflict of interest while traveling may ruin your vacation. So choose a companion who shares the same travel ambition as you do. If you love historic sights, choose someone who also has a keen interest in history and shares your thoughts about exploring an ancient ruin. This will not only make your travel interesting but also adds a new burst of excitement to the whole trip.
2. Match your pocket size
If you are a budget traveler and your companion is not, you are in for some serious arguments during your travel. And this is definitely not a good thing! So check your companion's travel style in terms of budget. If you are a backpacker, who does not mind staying in a dormitory to save some money, ensure that your companion is equally comfortable doing it. On the other hand if you are someone who does not mind a poolside dinner at a five star, make sure your companion does not have to eat street dinner because she does not have that kind of budget. Agree on your spending style before leaving for your travel.
3. Match your luggage quantity
This may sound silly but an imbalance in your packing may throw off the whole harmony of your trip. Some people carry 4 pairs of shoes for a day trip while some just carry a duffel bag for a week's travel. Imagine going on a desert safari where you have just a knapsack with nothing but the necessary and your companion drags along a big bag full of stuff that she thinks is necessary to her, but it is a burden in reality. Now you cannot leave your companion to bear all that alone while you breeze away without any baggage. So check what kind of luggage the person generally carries and talk about it before planning your trip.
4. Match your conversation styles
Talking and expressing your views are important in any relationship. So ensure that your companion and you can have long conversations at any point of time. If you are someone who does not like to talk much and your companion is just the opposite, imagine your frustration when one will be yapping while the other remains mum. Either both of you should be the quiet types or the talkative types because a mismatch here will spoil the beauty of the travel.
5. Match the responsibilities left behind
If your companion has to check the laptop or mobile for work mails every now and then, and you don't, you may find it irritating and start complaining, which is again a negative for the travel experience. If you have to call home every now and then to check on your toddler, or a family member, this can become a cause of complain for your companion. Therefore, ensure that you and your companion understand the responsibilities of one another, or better still share similar responsibilities to make the travel mutually enriching.
6. Match cultural interests
Say you are out on the street of Turkey on a lazy evening. Your cultural interests drive you towards a Sufi performance, while your companion chooses to spend time in a pub. What will this lead to? Needless to spell it out - A conflict of interests. So you sit alone watching the Dervish dance, while your companion goes stag into a night club. Even if none of you say it, the unwritten travel contract goes bitter somewhere.
7. Match your fear & pleasure factor
You may find happiness in talking to locals and understand their way of living. Your companion may be petrified of conversing with strangers in a strange land. This inhibition may subdue your spirits of making new friends in a land unknown. Again, your companion may find pleasure going on a solitary walk into the woods while you may be scared of venturing into it alone. Choose a companion who is the least different or most similar to you in your fears and pleasures.
8. Match your quirks
I would have asked you to avoid quirks altogether, but sometimes we may be more quirky than our companion. So here's the tip! Choose someone who you know is almost as quirky as you are. If you like things to be too prim and proper, make sure your travel companion is not the exact opposite. We can deal with opposite nature once in a while but we may not be very accommodating on all the days of our trip!
9. Match your fitness levels
This is one of the most important tips you have to keep in mind, if you intent to make the most of your travel. What if you want to go hiking or rock climbing but your companion refuses to accompany you because of a medical condition? You will have all the fun alone. Can you fully enjoy your adventures then? Obviously no. The case can be vice versa, where you will be left at the foot of the rock, waiting endlessly for your companion to return. Try to avoid such situation!
10. Match your comfort levels
This is probably the most important tip of all. Hence I saved it for last. No matter how different or similar you and your companion are, ask yourself, if you are comfortable sharing your travel experiences with this person. Do you feel safe and secure with your travel companion or do you have a hint of doubt in your mind? Ask these questions to yourself before you plan anything with your travel companion.
I hope you are a tad bit wiser now and will make a great decision when choosing your travel companion. But remember, no matter what the odds are, do not stop travelling and exploring. You never know what treasure is waiting for you at an unknown destination.
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Contributed By: Kriti Mazumdar