The difference between a memorable vacation and a horrific one often comes down to a seemingly small but ultimately hugely significant decision. If choices can ruin a solo trip, they can be much more devastating for a couple traveling. A lot of common travel mistakes are easily avoidable. We look at these mishaps and the ways to overcome them.
Sharing One Large Travel Bag
If you are planning to be away from home for at least a week, the change of clothes can add up pretty fast. For couples, packing everything in one bag may seem like a smart practical idea. It allows you to debate over what you actually need so you can cut down on your overall luggage. It also lowers your baggage costs. For all its merits though, such sharing can prove costly.
For example, if you have all your stuff in one bag and it does get lost, you risk losing everything. That means being forced to buy items in a foreign land, something that can be expensive since you may not be familiar with the most affordable local stores.
Instead, pack separate suitcases even if they have to be of a smaller size. You can throw in a small number of each other’s items in the other person’s suitcase so you aren’t completely stranded if one bag is lost.
An Overreliance on Taxis
Ride-hailing services like Lyft and Uber have disrupted the taxi business in many parts of the globe. As Americans, you may be looking forward to making the most of these relatively affordable commuting services when you do arrive at your travel destination. But this isn’t a good idea for two reasons.
First, ride-hailing services aren’t available in every country. Second, even where they are available, the cost of commute via taxi can pile up quickly. In fact, if your holiday is going to last several weeks, it may be cheaper to ship in your car from back home.
Instead, take time to understand the local public transportation system and make the most if it. It will cost you much less when you use buses and trains.
Not Being Price Sensitive
Whether it’s due to pressure to please one another, the excitement of travel or the language barrier, the couple traveling often disregard numerous opportunities to grab a bargain. Think of yourselves as one team that is going to face an exploitative world out there. Discuss and agree well before your trip that you won’t accept whatever price is thrown at you no questions asked.
Respectfully but boldly interrogate offers and explore more affordable alternatives. As tourists, you are bound to stand out in a crowd and this is often a cue for local merchants to exploit your presumed lack of local knowledge. Don’t be under pressure to accept anything. Do not hesitate to reject any deal that has the markings of a ripoff.
When visiting a country whose language you are not familiar with, find time to learn at least the basics. It’s amazing how quickly local traders get disarmed when you make an effort to speak their lingo. It can instantly transform them from heartless adversaries to empathetic hosts.
Always Choosing the Absolute Cheapest Option
It’s one thing to be price sensitive. It’s entirely another to make every single decision based on price. Your attempts at saving money can sometimes boomerang in ways you hadn’t anticipated.
Think about flights for example. How does the cheapest flight score in terms of travel duration, number of stops, a reliability of the airline and the expected arrival times? You may save in terms of the flight price but lose these savings in other ways. For a flight with two or three connections, imagine the disruption to your trip if you miss a connecting flight or your bags are lost in the process.
Whenever you are making a cost decision, always compare prices against value. What seems cheaper could only be so because it robs you of useful practical perks that come with a pricier alternative.
What was supposed to be a fun bonding trip can push a couple to the verge of reconsidering the future of their relationship? The above couple traveling mistakes often introduce tensions that not only ruin the fun but also introduce unnecessary tension. By keeping away from these mistakes, you increase the odds of having a trip whose memory you’ll savor for years to come.