Monday, 18 February 2013

10 Signs You're Not Compatible with Your Travel Partner

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10 Signs You're Not Compatible with Your Travel Partner

The right travel companion can make or break your trip. These 10 warning signs could indicate a potential travel-style incompatibility.

Your Budgets Aren't Equal
Have you budgeted more than your travel buddy for this trip? Does your companion want to stay in a five-star hotel while you want to sleep 10 to a room in a hostel? Watch out, because a difference in spending styles is one of the main causes of conflict between travel partners. It's better to travel solo than spend a whole trip fighting over every last penny (or pence).

 Agree on a budget before jetting off, and decide if you will split everything down the middle or itemize every meal and drink.

Your Planning Styles Are Different
There's no wrong way to travel—but if you want to schedule every day of a trip down to the minute and your travel partner wants to "see what happens" or "go with the flow," you're bound to have problems.

Compromise by selecting one day where you cross things off an itinerary and another where you can just do whatever comes up.

Your Dining Preferences Don't Match
That food truck may look tasty to you, but if your travel partner wants to eat at a fancy restaurant, one of you is going to be hungry (or unhappy). Or, if you consider meat one of the main food groups and you're traveling with a vegan, brace yourself for a few on-the-road arguments.

 Consider alternate dining options, like preparing a picnic with food from the local market, so that everyone's dietary preferences are met.

You Have Conflicting Sleep Habits
If you're going to share a hotel room, you and your travel partner will need to have similar sleep patterns—lest you get the urge to strangle your roommate, whose alarm has been cycling through snooze for the last hour.

 Try alternating between early wake-ups and sunrise hikes and late starts with leisurely breakfasts to make everyone happy at least half the time.

You Have Opposite Activity Levels
One man's idea of fun is another's waking nightmare. If you want to throw yourself off a bridge on a bungee cord and your buddy wants to take a bus tour instead, someone's going to be disappointed.

Remember that you're not glued at the hip to your partner—it's okay to split up on separate day trips and meet up later back at the hotel. You'll have more to talk about when you reunite.

You're an Extrovert, They're an Introvert
Some people think that "a stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet" whereas others still remember "stranger danger." This can create tense travel moments when one of you strikes up conversation with every person you meet and the other wants to keep to himself or herself.

 Let the less social traveler retreat into some quiet time with a book or headphones while the chatty partner makes new friends—everybody wins!

You Aren't Both Road Warriors
Some people can handle a 10-hour bus ride; others would rather pay (at any cost) to fly. People get seasick, are scared of mopeds, or refuse to pay for taxis when a perfectly good subway is available. Better make sure you and your travel companion have the same ideas about how to get around your destination before you head off.

  A few conversations before you book your trip can alleviate any on-the-road tension about, well, the road.

You Have Dissimilar Interests
How many museums can you handle in one day? For you, it might be fine to be on the go from dawn till dusk, but your travel partner may be envisioning a schedule with just one item: beach lounging. Before you head out, each member of your travel group should discuss their expectations for the trip

 if one person wants to see every single museum in the city and the other wants to see every beach, you may have to agree ahead of time to split up for certain activities.

You View Tourist Attractions Differently
Suppose you consider the Lonely Planet guide your hard-and-fast itinerary, but your travel partner thinks anything mainstream is too touristy.

What to do? Work together to create a good mix of iconic sites and "off the beaten path" locales—you may find that your trip winds up much better for it.

You Have Disparate Nightlife Preferences
Picture your ideal night on vacation. Are you at a discotheque, dancing with local partiers until dawn? Or are you relaxing in your hotel room with a good book and an early night's sleep? 

If you and your travel friend have opposing opinions, try to compromise, maybe with a few drinks at a hip local lounge before heading back to the room for some rest well before sunrise.

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