Traveling as a couple for the first time - And coming back together
You’ve been dating for a while and everything is great. The idea to go on a vacay comes up. What do you do? How do you know you’re ready? And most importantly, what should you expect. Here are some tips to avoid disaster.
First times are amazing. First date, first kiss, first time. But some firsts are scarier than others and going away together for the first time is definitely a scary thought. The reason is, that going away together is a preview of how it would be when you are living together. Most people don’t move in together before taking a trip since many relationships don’t survive past the first getaway. Why is it so difficult though?
Well it’s not. We have summed up a few tips to prepare you for what to expect on your trip and how to prepare yourself beforehand. And if at the end, you come back solo then it means it wasn’t meant to be. Let’s dig in, shall we?
Don’t go ahead and book a 2-week holiday at the Bahamas. Maybe the offer you found online is tempting, but don’t. Think about it, even with friends a long holiday can be exhausting, imagine what it might be like with a new partner that you don’t know all that well. Start off with a weekend, if you get through it without scratching out each other’s eyes, then consider a weekly holiday and go on from there. Also, don’t plan your trip with other couples or friends, you need to survive on your own.
Plan a vacation that is suited for both
You have every right to go to Scotland for whisky tasting but that doesn’t mean that your girlfriend will be too excited about it. Find a place that you both want to go and plan ahead. Each couple has its style and stick to yours. If you are an active duo, then go somewhere where there are a lot of things to do. You are sort of laid back? Book a lazy beach holiday. Being true to who you are as a couple will save you a lot of arguments.
Be open minded
And by that, I mean tolerant. Don’t go on a trip overly stressed about every little detail and ready to fight about something you don’t like on the schedule you made. The time for voicing your opinions was at the planning stage, now it's too late. Or you can politely mention it at an appropriate moment but not while you are on the plane/boat/ferry is not. Compromise, it’s not all rainbows and butterflies after all. If one of you is an early riser and the other loves to slug till noon, meet somewhere in the middle.
It’s ok to do stuff separately
You want to go to a museum, your partner to the beach. It’s ok to go to places alone and enjoy things that your other half won’t enjoy. If you insist on doing everything together, there can be awkward moments filled with silence. Or worse, too much talking that drives you insane. Whilst, you go and visit an exhibit on your own, you can come back and you have a lot of things to talk about. There has to be a reasonable balance though, don’t spend most of your day separately, cause this is not the purpose of the trip.
You will see each other at your worse
Things often go wrong. Your suitcase gets lost, your uber isn’t waiting for you right outside, the room is not ready etc. One of you might flip and if the other can’t handle it, it’s an indication that there is something wrong with your relationship. One of you can get sick and the other is not at all keen to help out, may also give you the gist of how your partner reacts in difficult situations. She might take too long to get dressed, he might take ages for a shower. You will see each other’s flaws and if you can’t get pass them, it means it’s not meant to be.
Agree on the budget
There’s nothing worse than going on a holiday if one of you gets stressed about money. Plan your trip based on the earnings of the one with the lower income. Money talk is uncomfortable but necessary beforehand. Try to calculate the possible expenses and add another 20% on top and discuss whether you’re both ok with the amount. If it’s not, remove an activity from your list or eat at a cheaper restaurant. Nobody should go broke just to go on a holiday.
Try something new as a couple
It’s a great bonding experience and something cool talk about with your friends afterwards. It will bring you closer and you will also get the opportunity to talk about each other’s limits and boundaries. Don’t forget to plan something romantic as well, it’s a couple getaway after all.
Don’t fuss over the small things
Things will go wrong, be prepared for that. But don’t get too worked up about it. You are a team whether you are on a trip or not. Teams are there for each other and stick through all the hardships. Despite all the meticulous planning, things can go wrong but you shouldn’t allow them to mess up your holiday up. If you can’t sweat off the small things, what will happen when you will have serious issues? Those are the moments where you get to problem solve together and find your dynamic as a couple.
Be prepared that you will find out your trigger points
I get cranky when I don’t sleep well so at any vacay I try to sleep as much as possible to be happy. My ex-partner would be over the edge when hungry, so we had to schedule in a lot of food stops. Travelling will push hard all those little trigger points. The point is to find solutions rather than fight about it constantly. If you can’t get pass them, then it means that your relationship is doomed.
And please be realistic, your first getaway won’t be perfect. But if you manage to come back together still in love, it means that it's a relationship worth maintaining. Plus, remember you are there to have fun, not push each other buttons. So, with positive energy, good planning and communication, I am sure you will have a great time.
Did you survive your first couple holiday?
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