Travelling with companions can be rewarding in most cases and sometimes frustrating too. However there are a few things you can always do to make your journey together smooth and stress-free as planned. So whether you’re travelling as a group or as a couple or volunteering an overseas trip with your kith and kin, remember the reason why you were there in the first place – you like each other, don’t you?
Communication is the key
Communication is the key, like anything else. It matters a lot in finding out your co-traveller’s likes and dislikes; intention of the trip; tour itinerary and changes, if any; planned budget, etc. Pre-planning what and what not to see, well in advance, can minimise surprises and heart burns leading to agony and conflicts. Always remember: no two minds are the same. Communication, and more importantly effective communication with a definite gameplan, can keep everyone happy, positive and comfortable throughout the journey.
Magic of Compromise
As we had already discussed, don’t try to impose your viewpoints on others, especially on the kind of activities people wanted to enjoy. Have an open mind and embrace diversity, not as a condition or a rule, but something you can use to explore hobbies or unravel new passions. ‘Variety is the spice of life’; why not compromise a bit with your travel companion? Consensus is an important element when travelling with others. Give every touring member a fair chance and you will find him/her to be lot more involved and happy.
Similarly, conceding to go along with your travel partner that he/she is excited about is a good idea. Even if you aren’t interested and the other person is well aware of it, you may be appreciated for having agreed to come along.
Do your own spadework
It is OK to drag an unwilling individual or group to a tourist attraction you really want to go – after all it is a matter of compromise as well! But ensure you do the spadework properly: work out the cost involved, how to reach the destination, how long do you need to travel and how long you would be content spending time there. Hopefully, even the most reluctant audience will become curious and join the party; even if they don’t, ensure you stay positive. You can be a soft target if things don’t go well as planned having convinced people to the trip.
Mix & Match
Once the group is done enjoying your choice of activity, take a look around to see if you can halt somewhere else that others may be interested about. If you show genuine interest in the travel needs of others, your travel partner will appreciate your gesture and this will go a long way in making the travel mutually enriching and inclusive.
Caring for the needs of others
Any travel situation may either involve your close acquaintance (not every time, mind you) or a group of total strangers onboard, and how you deal with the known and the unknown is the key. For instance, if you find a chatty and garrulous passenger seated next to you, it can kind of irritate you. But it can be a good ploy to overcome nerves, especially during the first 10 minutes of take off and ensure the next 10 hours of travel is flattering.
Finally, you are there to chill out, and don’t forget that. A lot of time and effort goes into the planning a tour and you must try making the most of it. Remember, it isn’t about showing your muscle; it’s about having an open mind and a positive outlook, and it’s about showing humility and empathy with your fellow traveller or travel buddy. Let trivial matters not take centre stage during travelling. Enjoy your personal space. Yes, by all means (of course) and share some space, when required, with others. How often do we complain about not spending quality time with our best pals? Don’t you think travelling can unite hearts, or may be even heal a broken heart? Finally, the most memorable holiday experiences are those that come unrehearsed, free and easy. Be appreciative, considerate and optimistic, and rest assured, you’re off on the trip of a lifetime.