Travelling as a couple can be a wonderful time together, but it could also end in disaster. As a travel couple, we know! Most other travel couple we’ve met have agreed it isn’t easy no matter how long you’ve been together.

Being thrown together 24/7, dealing with stress, and navigating new places can play havoc on your relationship. Don’t get us wrong, travelling together is an amazing experience but it can test even the strongest of relationships.

You’ve all heard the saying make it or break it and likewise it can certainly be true on your first trip together. From first timers to seasoned veterans we have you covered though.

We debunk some of the myths of travelling as a couple being all sunsets and cocktails. Here is the Ultimate Travel Couple’s Guide to Travelling Together.

Tips for the First Timer Travel Couple

As exciting as it may be, now is not the time to be planning a 3 month getaway with your new beau. Most couples choose a weekend away as their first break together.

Our first trip together was a weekend in North Wales after a few weeks of dating. It was the perfect location and amount of time for getting to know each other that little better.

In short, try to limit your chosen destination within your home country or a short flight away. A domestic break is best as it takes away the stress of airports and security checks etc.

Want to find the perfect destinations as a couple? Here’s how to choose the best couples holiday.

Top tips for Travel Couples

travel couples guide top tips

Don’t take it too personally

Whilst travelling emotions can notoriously run high. However, try not to take what your partner says during these times too personal.

We can all snap whilst put up pressure. Most important, take it with a pinch of salt and remember they probably didn’t actually mean what they said.

If you or your partner has travel anxiety like a lot of us, there are some tips that can help. From assigning roles to using yoga and breathing techniques to ease pre-travel stress.

Remember you’re a team

During your travels together you only have each other. There’s no “i” in team so make sure you both pull your weight.

Sometimes your partner may be stressed out or tired. Offer to help lightened the load by giving them a hand for instance. Sometimes they may not ask for help but it is gratefully received.

Time to get comfortable

Travelling together can sometimes get a little too personal with your partner. You’ll soon find things out about your partner that you wished you hadn’t.

We once booked a B&B room without a door to the en-suite bathroom. Not only could you hear everything but you could see everything too!

There really was no privacy at all but we just had a laugh about it. When you live together anyway you like to think you know your partner inside and out. But this was a whole new level of personal.

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Splash out on Private Rooms

On the subject of privacy, it may be worth spending that little extra to have a private room. We’ve stayed in our fair share of hostels and shared accommodation when travelling solo in the past. But as a travel couple we always book a private rooms whenever we can.

Shared dorm rooms have always felt less intimate and private to us. But if you want that hostel experience still then booking a private room is the way to go.

If you’re keen to keep the budget low we have some tips from Matt & Ally, Borderline Backpackers on shared dorm rooms:

It definitely is less intimate. We have to act more as friends when staying in a dorm together. I found that other people are less leikly to approach us in a hostel if we appear very couplely.

If you do want privacy, we sometimes put a sheet around the bed frame, so it feels like a tent and no-one can see in.

Did you know sex while travelling improves your sex life?

It’s harder to make friends

As a travel couple we always have each other to keep us company. But that doesn’t always bode well if you want to make friends with other travellers. Some solo travellers find couples intimidating at times.

We also have to consciously make an effort to talk to others when together. It can be really easy for us to stick to ourselves and not approach other travellers.

We’ve found group tours can be great for meeting new people as you start to form a bond with your group. A lot of times there’s a mix of solo travellers, couples and families too.

Don’t Fight in Public

Unless you’re a perfect match made in heaven, conflicts and arguments can and will arise whilst on the road. When at home you can fight to your hearts content and not worry about what other people may think though.

While on a trip it’s important not to fight in public. If there’s nothing more that people dislike than a public display of affection, it’s a public fight!

Keep the fights private. No-one wants to air their dirty laundry out in public and it’s no different when you’re away.

Be willing to argue

On the topic of fights, be willing to argue when away. It’s natural that you’ll have times where you want to bite your partner’s head off.

Law and I can argue with the best of them. But we don’t hold onto grudges or let it get in the way of our travel plans.

Learn to forgive and forget. Dealing with your grievances head on you can then quickly put them behind you and make up.

Always apologise if you’ve hurt your partner and if on the other side accept the apology swiftly. Bringing up the past does more harm than good, so work things out and then forget about it.

Communicate

Everyone knows communication is key to any relationship and it’s no different when travelling. I’d even go as far as to say that it’s more important.

When at home you’re in your own comfort zone and can easily get away if you’re partner annoys or upsets you. When travelling you don’t have that luxury however. You’re also going to start to notice and pick up on all the little things that bother you about your partner.

Talk it out. We’re never one to keep things bottled up and we always feel better for it afterwards. How else is your partner going to know that you’re tired of being dragged around temples if you don’t speak up?

Talk things out and let them know your feelings. It may surprise you that your partner is feeling exactly the same.

Want to know some more ways to improve your relationship?

Compromise, Compromise and Compromise

If you both enjoy the same interests then you may find this doesn’t apply to you. However, for us it’s in the name Opposite Tourists that we’re very different in our tastes and personalities.

I enjoy city breaks and beach resorts while Law loves nothing more than exploring castles and hiking. Now that’s not to say that I wouldn’t be happy spending a day at Tower of London though.

You have to be willing to give and take. It’s not so bad to spend a few hours doing what your partner truly loves. In return they’ll probably let you drag them around an art gallery for a few hours if that’s what you love to do.

a couple standing in front of angkor wat sunrise in front of the pods
Travelling together you get to experience so much

Give yourselves some space

Some couples, us included, like to spend some time apart when travelling. It doesn’t mean we’ll spend a whole day by ourselves, but a few hours here or there is nothing really.

For example, Law likes to go out exploring at night whereas I’m usually in bed by 10. If I’m too tired or just don’t feel like going out that evening it’s no big deal. I’ll stay at the hotel reading a book while he’ll get the evening out by himself.

If spending time apart doesn’t sound like your idea of fun then no sweat. A lot of couples like to spend all their time together and that’s okay too. Just be willing to compromise if you’re not into something that your partner wants to do.

There’s actually some benefits to solo travel while in a relationship.

It may not be any cheaper

People always think that travelling as a couple results in a cheaper trip overall. But that’s not necessarily the case. Yes you can share a double room which cuts down the costs somewhat but you still have two flight tickets, two sets of meals etc.

We actually find we end up spending more money when travelling together. It’s easy for both of us to encourage the other to spend more than we usually would.

For instance, I enjoy eating at nice restaurants and don’t mind splurging on food and wine. I’m notorious for not looking at menu prices and just ordering what I want which I encourage Law to do too.

If that sounds like you and your partner we’ve taken the liberty of explaining how to budget as a travel couple.

The Ultimate Travel Couple Guide to Travelling Together

Want to hear other travel couple’s opinion of travelling together? We interviewed 10 different travel couples for our series on the truth about travelling as a couple.

From couples who have backpacked long term together to those like us who take several shorter trips a year. They give you a full rundown of their experiences as a travel couple.

In conclusion, travelling as a couple can bring your closer than ever if you can navigate through the hard parts. Being able to share those travel experiences with your partner is a dream come true for most of us.

If you follow these tips, it will only make your time as a travel couple that much better. How did you find our travel couple’s guide to travelling together? Got any tips we left out?

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