My mom always told me that before you can tell it’s “true love,” there is a major test you have to put you and your honey through—you have to go on a trip together.
Why? Because people act differently when they are on trips. For good or bad, they act more real. They get excited over the fun parts of the trips, and annoyed at the bad parts. When things aren’t going as planned, they get tired and cranky; when they get to do fun stuff, they get silly. Ultimately, all of the best and worst of them come out at once.
If you can handle each other during a trip, then real life should be a piece of cake!
So be it a road trip to a touristy town, or a quick flight to Vegas or the beach, it’s essential that you plan well in order to have things go as smoothly as possible and even ensure there will be a second trip on your future. Here are some tips to planning the best couples trip possible.
- Discuss the trip in detail. Make sure the destination is something you both want. Talk about if you want to “plan” daily activities or just go with the flow. Get input from your honey on what he or she wants to get out of the trip. Is this to relax and do nothing, or go wild and do everything?
- Get a basic itinerary down. Maybe you don’t want to plan minute by minute, but get on a sheet what time you are leaving, possible ideas for a special dinner, where you will be staying, transportation, a list of possible activities close by, etc. That way when you get to your destination, you aren’t searching for stuff to do—you already have ideas and can more quickly decide what to do next.
- Compromise. Realize that you are two different people with two different ideas coming to the table. When you become a couple, you need to shed the idea that you have complete control; now you have a co-pilot. So give up some things, but stick your neck out of some of the things you want most, too.
- Figure out the money situation. Trips can be spendy, from food to lodging to activities. So decide beforehand how it will be divided. Or estimate the total and get a pool in. Overestimate just so you have extra on hand.
- Pack separately. Just trust me on this. You each need your own space when it comes to your personal belongings, and you both probably pack differently. So keep things separate.
- Manage hunger and tiredness wisely. Most of the time, when people are hungry or tired they are cranky. Alleviate that by making sure you get enough sleep; if not at night then allow some nap time. Also make sure you eat regularly, with meals and snacks. Overeating can also cause grumpiness, so while you are ok to indulge at some vacation meals, back off on others.
- Expect things to happen outside of your control. Sometimes planes are late, car tires go flat, or rain ruins a trip to an amusement park. Things happen, no matter how hard we try to plan for them. If you go in knowing that yes, something might interfere with your trip, then your attitude will be in check. Just make the most of it! I went to the Grand Canyon with my honey and 15 minutes in it started hailing. We didn’t get to see much more of the site after that, but we had fun anyway—and a great memory together.
- Have fun! Laugh, take photos, talk about how amazing you feel, and how wonderful it is to spend time together. Reveal in the happiness this trip is bringing to you and your relationship. Isn’t that why you took this getaway in the first place?