I warn you, this is not the “cute travel troubles,” this is the real deal. Zoey and I have been traveling together for almost 3 years. We’ve lived together, backpacked together, traveled together, and vacationed together. You might be thinking, what’s the difference? Well, there’s a huge difference. We backpacked through Southeast Asia and stayed in crowded party hostels. We’ve traveled and lived in a van for two months in Australia. We’ve taken a ‘luxury’ holiday in Thailand for our anniversary. We’ve lived together in a shared house, and we’ve lived in our own house. When you get to this point in your relationship, you come across a few bumps on the road. So, if you’re planning to travel with your significant other, take this as a warning.
DON’T travel as a couple because…
- You’ll bicker. You’ll bicker a lot. Maybe one of you lost the key to the hotel room, forgot to print out the train tickets, or pissed off the bus driver. Whatever it is, there will always be something you bicker about. Traveling, especially backpacking is often uncomfortable and your emotions will seem amplified. So, when your sandwich has mayo and you specifically asked her to order it with no mayo, you’ll bicker.
- You’ll see each other at your worst. I’m not talking about not wearing makeup early in the morning, I’m talking explosive diarrhea after eating raw chicken in the streets of Laos. I’m talking heat rash and mosquito attack in the middle of the night because it’s Cairns and you’re living in a van of course. I’m talking about not showering for a week because you live in a van, you don’t have a shower, it’s winter, and the only showers are outside showers by the beach. Yeah, it’s real romantic.
- You’ll disagree. Obviously, this is inevitable. Zoey wanted to go to India, but I wanted to go to Japan. Zoey wanted to stay in a 12 bed hostel dorm room, but I wanted to stay in a private room. Zoey wouldn’t eat street food, because of previous raw chicken incidents, and I thought….YOLO. Whatever it is, you’ll either compromise, or you’ll do your own thing.
- You’ll get tired of each other. Especially if your traveling circumstances demand that you are in close proximity to each other at all times. Like living in a van for example, or doing a guided tour with a tour company. Everyone needs their “me-time” and when you’re traveling with your significant other, you often don’t get that.
- You’ll lose all sense of privacy. You’ll fart, you’ll vomit, you’ll pick your nose, you’ll cry, you’ll shit, you’ll sleep, you’ll laugh, you’ll do everything together. EVERYTHING!
- You’ll get frustrated. Not only will you get frustrated at them, you’ll get frustrated at yourself. Like I said before, unless you’re rich, traveling is always a big clusterfuck of uncomfortable situations. This being said, nothing will ever go smoothly, so you’ll get frustrated and she’ll be there to see it, deal with it, or kick you out of the room.
- You’ll argue about money. I think this is especially true for people who travel long term like us. You always have to be conscious of your money, so arguments arise. Can we really afford to buy a $9 drink? No, I don’t think so.
- You’ll break up. Just kidding. But, I mean, some couples do break up and that’s the end of their travels. Or they break up after their travels because they realize that they didn’t like bickering, seeing each other at their worst, disagreeing, not having any privacy, getting frustrated, arguing about money, and they simply get tired of each other.
You see, traveling with your significant other is not all fun and games. It’s hard. Especially if you’re in a new relationship, good luck to you. Traveling as a couple brings your relationship up a notch; It’s different than living together or going to a fancy hotel for a few weeks. So, if you can get through this, you can get through anything.
Good luck,, and don’t say I didn’t warn you.