You are currently viewing Travelling as a Couple: The Best Tips for Couple Travel
Couple Travel

Travelling as a Couple: The Best Tips for Couple Travel

I am writing this from a beach in Fiji with a rum in hand and Fleetwood Mac playing. However, as extra as that sounds, it took a ridiculous amount of literal blood, sweat and tears to get here. Quitting your job to travel the world sounds hopelessly romantic and spontaneous but very few share the reality behind those #blessed posts. Newsflash, travelling as a couple is tough.

The sixty-hour work weeks it took, the 9000 attempts for that “candid snap” and the endless threats of “that’s it I’m leaving you behind.” Although we live with our heads very much in the clouds, there are daily disasters that keep our feet firmly on the ground. Disasters we feel are not shared enough, in favour of the airbrushed Instagrams, cheese-fest Facebook updates and stomach churning couple travel quotes.

Even today for example, our flight was delayed nearly 5 hours, a cyclone has hit the island and so our entire itinerary of activities have been cancelled. Paradise, huh?

Whether you too feel ready to brave an adventure travelling as a couple or you simply want a peek behind the scenes, pour yourself a large pinot and read on…

These are the lessons we have learnt travelling as a couple and wish we’d been warned of prior to packing the bags.

Workaway Hawaii - Lanikai Pillbox Hike

SAT NAVS WRECK MARRIAGES

Firstly, we’re not married. Secondly, our Sat Nav probably plays part blame to that. For the simple reason our Sat Nav (known as Sandra) has witnessed some Jeremy Kyle worthy arguments. She has got us through – and caused – some tough times indeed.

From the tip top of the UK in Scotland, all the way to Alton Towers where Darren threatened to leave me with a lorry driver at every service stop. Through the traffic jams of LA where I cried every time Darren put the roof down through fear of frying alive. She got us to the mountain summits in Switzerland where we thought death was imminent on the single track roads, through the kangaroo chaos when camping in Australia and even round New Zealand in a campervan.

Wee Sandra has been there, when at times we wished each other wasn’t. It’s surprising road trips are our favourite way to travel considering a driver and co-pilot relationship is one of the hardest things to nail when you’re as easily distracted as me and as road rage prone as Darren.

Whether nipping to the local Co-op or navigating Greek Islands, arguing over directions is nothing new (pretty sure the Egyptians even argued for where to pop the Pyramids) and despite the amount of road trip essentials (and snacks) we remember, road rage is often rife and a sat nav sanctuary is something we hope will get better. If not, Jezza we’re ready for you.

Couple Sitting In Mini Moke On Magnetic Island

THE "I DON'T MIND, WHERE DO YOU WANT TO EAT" ARGUMENT

We can probably count on one hand the few phrases that properly anger us, but if like us, the response “I don’t mind where do you want to eat” invites as much rage as Trump’s latest tweets then here is one of our best couple travel tips…

Firstly, do not wait until you’re hungry to find somewhere to eat, try to plan where your next meal will be before the Hanger sets in. Do not use TripAdvisor for the best recommendations in a city. Simply because this results in – you’ve guessed it – A LOT of directions to find the best spots. There is nothing worse than finally getting there to find the restaurant is full or closed.

Been there, done that, read about that epic argument in our Vienna post.

Instead, use TripAdvisor’s or Google’s “near me” tool. When travelling as a couple, it’s a bloody lifesaver. As soon as the first belly rumble strikes, hit the app and it will show you the best rated restaurants within walking distance of your current location. No train/plane/sat nav required. Hunger (and relationship) resolved in minutes.

Couple On Rooftop Peter Tapas

KNOW THEIR WEAKNESS AND THEIR ANTIDOTE

I would imagine before you chuck a grand or two down for a trip, you haven’t just met on Tinder and you know your travel companion pretty well. Admittedly if there’s one thing travelling as a couple has taught us, it’s that we know each other better than we know ourselves. I know the face he does when he’s hungry, he knows not to say “you must be on your period” when I cry every time I have to make a decision.

Learning their weakness is one thing, but we’ve became heroes at “tantrum antidotes” also. Spot the hangry face early on – know to run for the nearest baked good. Tell her she looks better than Beyonce before she cries over yet another outfit change. Let him sulk when his football team loses. Agree to the five minute photo shoot as those photos could make her day.

Learn what makes them tick, before they hit hulk mode and travelling as a couple should be smooth sailing. Equally, a definite couple travel tip is learn the trick that makes them laugh/stop crying/apologise early on so you’ll save so much time huffing and puffing over what doesn’t matter and spend more time on the moments that do.

Couple Lying In Hammock Looking Towards Ocean

EMBARRASSMENT WILL GO OUT THE WINDOW

Just a wee snippet of Loz and Daz overheard on an almost daily basis…

Can you please close the door when you pee? Or at least put some clothes on

“You legit smell like dung. Fix it.”

“Can you see my pants through my leggings when I walk like this?”

“How bad does that fart smell?”

Whether high fiving because you’ve not had diarrhoea for over a week, being on nipple watch or threatening to get the next flight home because his fart was that bad, there is no such thing as awkward when travelling as a couple.

If you couldn’t guess already, it is not all orgasms and coconuts. If you can get through travelling – living, breathing, eating with each other 24/7 then my friend, you have found a keeper. Couples that travel together and don’t kill each other stay together.

At the end of the day, we’re human. Shit happens. Embarrassment doesn’t have to happen. So instead of suffering in silence, couple travel tip number 4 is sharing the embarrassment is embarrassment halved – pretty sure that’s the saying. Or at least take a photo of said embarrassment and save it for couple travel tip 5, below.

Travel Couple Drinking Fresh Coconut In Oahu Hawaii

MAKE DEALS - OTHERWISE KNOWN AS BRIBERY

Although this tactic is more likely used by mothers and toddlers over Peppa Pig and PJs, it’s a daily survival tip we recommend to all backpacking BFFs travelling as a couple.

In New York I made the deal with Darren we’d go art gallery, pub, art gallery, pub. It worked – the drunker he got the more art he liked. His deals usually involve me helping him do the life admin (boring budget stuff) if I want him to play Instagram husband and take candid snaps of me. 

I suppose the grown ups call it compromise, as offering a deal shows how you can both win from the situation. Although I’ll never convert Darren to be an art lover and equally he knows I can’t stand burger joints or budgets – make a deal and you’ll both get the most out of your trip.

Man In Gallery In Stockholm

IT'S NOT THE END OF THE WORLD

It’s a fact of life that luggage gets lost, hostels can be hell on earth and trains get cancelled. However, chances are you’ve spent months saving for this trip or worse, if it’s a weekend away it’ll be over before you know it, so don’t waste time sulking or screaming at each other. When shit hits the fan (which it inevitably will when travelling as a couple) use our simple motto.

“You could be at work right now.”

When we rocked up in a crack den worthy hostel in Riga, those 7 words instantly made us laugh. It is probably the couple travel tip we use most often as no matter the situation, just remember the endless list of worse scenarios you could actually be in.

At that very moment you may want to punch him or Sellotape her mouth shut or indeed download Tinder and find a new one, but there’s a reason you’re on this adventure together. No truer words can be said as we are “stranded” in our wee beach hut due to this cyclone. We could be stranded in Fife. Or worse, without rum.

It took Darren and I six years of long distance to finally spend more than a week in the same place together, so if there’s one thing we’ve learned about this travelling as a couple malarkey it’s not where you go that matters, it’s who you are with.

Couple By The Water

We get our couple travel tips are not for everyone, but we hope they provided a giggle or two as that is what is most important. Learning to laugh when it goes wrong and travelling with the person that makes you laugh when at times you just want to cry.

Travelling as a couple is tough, do not let those hideously beautiful insta-couples trick you otherwise, but remember one bad day doesn’t make a bad trip – you can get over it, make the most of it, or at the least make fun of it. We’d love to know your favourite couple travel tips in the comments as we can always learn a trick or two!

Pinterest Pin - Couple Travel - Couple Holding Hands In The Sunset
Pinterest Pin - Couple Travel - Couple On Lanakai Pillbox Hawaii
Pinterest Pin - Couple Watching The Sunrise

faramagan

When Darren the WordPress wizard & excel enthusiast met Lauren the storyteller and wannabe wanderluster, a grand adventure was bound to happen. Through Faramagan they document their tales (and fails) with a refreshing and unfiltered approach. By avoiding adulthood one adventure at a time, they hope to inspire others to do the same.

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Caroline L

    This is hilarious – I travel most often with my best friend as well as a couple of others in our group and it’s funny how true this rings for us as well. I swear I broke out in hives when I saw the “I don’t care – wherever you want to eat” – I was seriously concerned for our friendship (and if we’d make it home alive) while in Belgrade one afternoon when we hadn’t eaten anything all day bc no one would make a decision. On a road trip once also, I accidentally forgot to remind my friend to take an exit which ultimately delayed us for 30 min, asked her if she could forgive me, and she famously said: “I’m very angry at you at the moment, but I’ll be fine in 10 minutes. Just don’t talk to me for the next 10 minutes.”

    1. faramagan

      I think at times it’s even worse travelling with a best friend…I’m more scared of offending her so can never make a decision. With the boyfriend its the opposite – we both want to be the boss haha!!

  2. Kathi

    Amen to all of that! I’ve not traveled long-term with my partner yet, but I think a lot of this advice also applies for even just living together. He still needs to learn my hangry face though – usually it’s already too late 🙂

  3. tanya

    Ha ha absolutely loved this post, and all so incredibly true. The best best best tip ever is to learn the hangry face. It has saved my husband’s life so many times. He has even learned to carry a snack with us when we go out to feed me when I start to get my grump on. Totally need to adopt your motto “you could be in work right now” when I find myself in a hostel/hotel room where I sleeping on the chair looks preferable to the gross bed!

    1. faramagan

      Oh the snacks in the handbag trick, I should’ve added that one in haha!! We’re in Fiji at the moment and sooo much has gone wrong on this trip (including cyclones & coral cuts) I think I jinxed it by publishing this post haha!!

  4. Anna

    This is both a cute and funny story. Thanks for being brutally honest and sharing. Now… where do I find that boyfriend, haha.

  5. Jen

    Love this post. It’s so refreshing to read stuff like this that is real and not all sunshine and rainbows because that’s not how it really is ?

    We love sharing our mishaps just as much as our great days! It’s what makes stuff memorable.
    Great read guys ?

    1. faramagan

      Thanks so much Jen, completely agree I much prefer reading about real couples than those air brushed, sickeningly infatuated couples on Instagram haha!!

Leave a Reply to faramagan Cancel reply