As a young woman of considerable means, it is one of my fancies to hop on planes and fly to new places. I’m just lucky that way. As I’ve started to travel more often with my friends and not just to my parents’ home, I’ve realized that traveling can make or break the friendship. So here are the three best pretty much guaranteed and full-proof ways to travel with your friends (and still remain friends at the end of it):
1. Travel with a big group.
When I say big group, I mean 8-10 people. Why? Because you will always find a friend. At least two of you can go off exploring the city and see the sites while keeping the cost of hotel rooms and shared cab rides to a cheaper cost. This is a win/win for everyone.
Plus consider that if you do travel to and from the airport, you can probably get a limousine for the same cost as three cabs. Speaking from personal experience, this was a highlight of one of my trips. If I had thought to put that on my bucket list, I would have.
2. Tag along with a friend for a work conference.
Your friend will spend all day in the conference while you can sleep in, relax, take in the city, and decide what you want to do. Then you play all evening.
I’m an introvert so I like my alone time. Trips with friends make me nervous because I’m not sure how much time I’ll get to spend with myself and my thoughts. This kind of trip is the perfect solution. I got my time to explore and do the things on my to-dos, and my friend got the benefit of my crazy planning skills. Sure there was the weird interruption of the public transportation breaking down and so we only had a couple of minutes to enjoy one of the stops on our list, but I think it made for pretty awesome traveling. We didn’t hate each other at the end of it.
Plus, we also perfected the art of selfies. Exhibit A:
3. Small Group with similar tastes
Although the big group was fun, having a small group of 3-4 of us can be just as great. With so few, you will stick together. It’s critical to select these friends carefully. You want to find people who go your speed and want to go to similar places as you.
Last year, I took an amazing trip with three friends. We all felt like we needed to do some planning to make the most of our limited time at our destination. It ended up being a fantastic trip because everyone had considered our must-sees and had done that by the fourth day (we’re very efficient that way). There were times when we separated into groups of two, but mostly we were together the entirety of our trip. I really hope to travel with these friends again.
It can be so nerve-wracking to commit to making a trip with friends. It brings your friendship to a whole new level—one that you may not be ready to do. If you are planning the trip and a bit wary, my last piece of advice is to try not to worry. Unless you have serious red flags. I wish I could tell you what the flags are, but you’ll know.
If you are stuck on a trip with a friend who is probably no longer a friend after said trip, try to smile and get through it. Enjoy what you can. Find an outlet (mine was Facebook messaging with another friend) and make it through. Most likely, it’s only going to be a few days. (If it’s more than that, you have my sympathies.)
What are your best tips for traveling with your friends?