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Luxury Travel Tips: 10 Tips for Travelling as a Couple

Mr Silver and I have been together nearly six years and in that time we’ve had many short-haul mini-breaks, long-haul adventures, week-long holidays and UK staycations. A period of close proximity with your other half can do wonders for your relationship but it can also provide challenges and frustrations. In this post I want to share with you the lessons I’ve learned over the years about couples travel and how to make the most of it.

1. Choose a destination that suits you both

Think about what you both want out of a destination before going ahead and booking. For me it’s good food, culture, beautiful landscape and plenty to do; whereas Mr S wants relaxation, the beach, sunshine and sports. A few of our trips have hit all the right notes for both of us such as Australia, South Africa and Thailand and these have always been our favourite trips. If it doesn’t work out quite that well we usually organise a multi-destination trip that gives us best of both world which is why we combined Japan with The Philippines and a USA road trip with a sojourn in Bora Bora. Either way, if you’re investing in a trip make sure it’s going to be something that you both love. DSC08326-1
As Mr S isn’t really involved in my planning process, I now put together a Pinterest board for him so that he’s happy with our chosen destination and can see that he’s going to get the experiences that he wants too.

2. Know your strengths 

By now you know I’m very much the organiser of the trip, not only am I very thorough in my research and planning I also really enjoy doing it. As a type A personality, organisation and structure are very much my forté and I make sure we’re always booked into places and get there on time.

Mr S is really good at packing, years of business travel has given him experience in optimising suitcase space and fitting in everything in a way that makes sense. In fact, he’s so good at it that now I lay all my clothes and things out and he packs for me…if I do the packing I just get told I’m doing it wrong ;). He is also much better at looking after money, electricals and he’s a more skilled driver than me so these are all of his jobs when we’re on holiday. photo-2
Know what you’re good at, stick to it and help each other along the way.

3. Compromise 

While I have terrible FOMO and I’m desperate to see EVERYTHING that a destination has to offer, Mr S is more of a fan of slow travel. He loves history and is interested in seeing the highlights of the place but also wants plenty of time for relaxation and to take it easy. I’ve come to the realisation that I can take things too far and have learnt to do things more his way. Equally when you’re visiting a destination make sure you’re taking account of both your interests, you may hate sports but you never know how much you’ll enjoy seeing a baseball game in the USA. Art might not be your thing but you never know what you might like in the effort to please your other half. I don’t love boats and can get sea sick but I’ve learnt to appreciate them because Mr S loves them so much. DSC08513
And I love seeing the big smile on his face when he boards a boat and is surrounded by water.

I have a blogger friend who has come to a compromise with her husband that every time they see something cultural, he gets to stop for a beer in exchange…just work out what works best for you and stick to it.

4. Help each other break out from a comfort zone

I’m someone that’s easily scared and I use travel as an opportunity to conquers fears and I always try to do something that scares me. Having your other half by your side is the best way to break out of your comfort zones and face that phobia.
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For example, I was terrified of taking the cable car to the top of Table Mountain in South Africa but it was Mr Silver’s reassurance and support that made me get in that little box dangling from a string and ascend the mountain. The support of your other half makes you feel like you can do anything…though I’m pretty sure there’s nothing that will get me sky-diving…

5. Try something new together

The thing that I love the most about couples travel is the memories that you build together and trying something completely new doesn’t only give you fantastic memories but it can make your relationship stronger.

We’ve had several ‘firsts’ together such as:
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Flying in a seaplane in Australia…
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Trying authentic sushi in Japan…
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And going on safari in South Africa.

I’d really recommend trying at least one new thing together as it’ll be a memory that lasts a lifetime.

6. It’s ok to take time apart

Maybe he keeps doing that *thing* that really irritates you, maybe she keeps going on and on (and on and on) about the disappointing meal that she had last night. If you start to grate on each other it really is ok to take an hour or so alone, you might be on holiday but you don’t need to spend every single moment together! DSC_8612
Or maybe one of you has a passion that you don’t necessarily share, so one of you can go wind surfing, sky diving or off to an art exhibition while the other does their own thing. Mr S can spend absolutely hours and hours just lying by the pool, but I get bored with that and I take myself off for a walk or shopping. Equally when we were in San Francisco, it was the World Cup Final so Mr S found a sports bar to install himself in while I got my hair blow dried.

7. But savour moments together

While we do have lots of opposing interests, we do of course have plenty of shared interests. One of those is of course food! One thing we agree upon is to really savour our meal experiences when on holiday and that means always sitting down to enjoy a proper meal together rather than just grabbing a sandwich somewhere.DSC_6770
We also both love history and we’re alway keen to have a tour from a local guide to hear more about the history and culture of a place. It gives us a great opportunity to really engage with the country that we’re visiting and have a shared understanding of the background of it.

8. Include an extra special romantic treat 

Whether it’s a surprise organised by one of you or something that you plan to together, an extra special treat will elevate the romance of the trip. A few things we’ve done are private dinners in dramatic locations, hiring a yacht for the day, a drop off at a private beach and our seaplane trip. DSC08738

9. Air your grievances respectfully 

If you think your other halves preferences or annoying habits are holding you back from fully enjoying the trip, tell them but in a calm and courteous way. This way you can meet a compromise so that you can both continue to enjoy yourselves and make the most of your holiday. Don’t start airing grievances when you are super jet-lagged, ‘hangry’ or at boiling point as that will only lead to a blazing row and potentially ruin a night of your holiday.DSC_5063
Respect each other and don’t let little things get to you. Also never go to bed angry, resolve your problems and continue to enjoy your holiday.

10. Find ways to relive the memories when you get back

For me the most important thing about going away together is the memories that you make. Mr S and I have had so many wonderful experiences that will live with us forever, these are shared experiences that we’ll aways be able to talk about and tell our future children.DSC_1836-2
With that being the case, I think it’s really important to preserve those memories. We often print photos to frame around our flat, we make photo memory books and we keep souvenirs of our time away. Actually preservation of these wonderful memories is one of things I love most about blogging. I will always have this online diary to look back on and remember the once-in-a-lifetime experiences….and how we had them together.

Do you have any tips or lessons that you’ve learnt from travelling as a couple? 

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Luxury Travel Tips: 10 Tips for Travelling as a couple

 


  • I’m crying – “Maybe he keeps doing that *thing* that really irritates you, maybe she keeps going on and on (and on and on) about the disappointing meal that she had last night.”
    We’ve learned that when I get irrationally hangry that it’s time for a coffee/snack stop…

    • Hanger is a real thing!

      • Seetal @SavlaFaire

        It definitely is, as I’m on the receiving end of that more often than I’d like!

        • Omg if I’m hangry Mr S isn’t even allowed to speak to me!!

          • TravelWithNanoB

            Lol same here, I’m dangerous if I’m hangry!

  • What a great post! Point two has always served us very well – Matthew is *brilliant* at planning and is a great driver, whereas I’m great at packing and love meeting new folk. It works out well. We always build in little solo things to longer breaks too – I might go to the spa, he might go watch a game in a sports bar – it’s a nice way to vary things!

    • Yes! I’m also the one that gets talking to people. I think people can be a doubtful about separating but it’s definitely a good thing on longer breaks.

  • Your friend whose husband gets to stop for a beer every time they see a cultural sight seems to have struck a clever balance, as do you

  • MissLilly

    I love to see these posts of yours because I know Mr S is also your best friend! It’s the same way as I have at home 🙂 It’s important to learn to respect each other, do compromises and find something that suits both. I guess over time, we barely have to compromise, because our tastes have grown so close together! We both love to try different foods and relax. I’m the one that organizes everything and packs (I’m like Mr. S, I know the quickest and best way to pack loads of stuff after getting used to business travel). Maybe for that same reason I recognize myself in Mr. S preference for relaxing and not trying to cover all in the same trip. Before business travel I used to plan everything, almost to the hour. Nowadays all I want is to get a vibe of the place, find local places and explore as I fancy on the day. Might even be that both of us decide to have a nap and go to the spa. I used to be the one photographing everything, now even that we do together!

    • That’s so true about your tastes growing closer! And that’s exactly true…he thinks a holiday about taking time out not rushing around to see everything! Slow travel is definitely worthwhile too.

      • MissLilly

        everything is valid in the end! Depends on what we feel like that particular moment in time. Sometimes you might want to explore around, other times the bar and the pool might look more tempting 🙂

        • That’s so true. What I learnt from Japan is to allow for jet lag, we hit the ground running and I never caught up with myself.

          • MissLilly

            I took the most I could from Japan’s jet lag, as some temples are better in early morning hours, which meant we would have naps in the afternoon before dinner 🙂

  • This is such a good post! I was reading this thinking – yeah I do that, yeah he does that. I’m the packer, and always responsible for everything on the trips (even his passport), but then Mr P will help me push myself to do the things that scare me a little.

    • Ha! Yeah! He holds the passports too. What have you done that scares you?

      • I was terrified to snorkel (yep I am that much of a wuss), and also jumping off the boat into the water, and he made me do it on our honeymoon. I wouldn’t say that was a fan of it, but I am glad I did it, and I was really pleased with myself. I saw so many cool fish, and if I’d been a bit quicker and paying more attention to the guides on the boat I’d have seen a whale shark! Oops.

        • I’m actually scared of snorkelling too and I’ve certainly never been diving. You can’t go to place like the great barrier reef and not stick your head in the water though 🙂

  • Sam and I have the same travel relationship that you and Mr S do – FOMO and the slow traveler. Maybe it’s a blogger thing? 😉 x

  • I love number 4 🙂

  • I absolutely agree that travel can make or break a relationship; be it with family, friends, or one’s other half. I put my new relationship to the test with recent trips to Barcelona and Croatia. All went well thanks to being open with communication – we put aside a afternoon to do our own thing (me: shop with my girlfriends and have brunch, him: go to the beach and hang out with his friends). He was so patient even with my Pokemon Go addiction. Exhibit A: Screaming: “STOP! I need to catch this Squirtle!” (he lights a cigarette and smiles wryly), Exhibit B: When I disappeared at 2am to play Pokemon Go and texted him an hour later: “I’m lost. HELP!”

    10 Reasons Why You Should Visit – Split, Croatia Part 2 – Posh, Broke, & Bored

    • You know you found someone who loves you when they accept you Squirtle obsession! Glad it worked out with Barcelona and Croatia.

  • Hehe, you know you’re spending a lot of time around bloggers when you know exactly who you’re referring to who rewards her other half with beers for every cultural activity 😀 I can’t believe he packs for you, that’s so sweet. I did my sweetest puppy dog face hoping Pumpkin would do the same for me but given he plans, books, navigates, keeps the electrics, keeps the money and all round gets me to and from places on time, I think he thought it was pushing it a bit! Come to think of it, I’m not sure what I do other than take photos!! 🙂

    • Lol! That’s brilliant that Pumpkin lets you take time off as the observer / blogger while he does everything else 😉

  • Melissa B

    My tip after almost 15 years of marriage – let him “think” he has a say in where you are going and what you are doing! I am also the Type A planner and often plan trips almost a year in advance. When deciding where to go, I will give the hubs a list of 5 to 10 destinations and ask him to pick his top 2. That way, he feel like he gets say in where we are going but really I have already narrowed it down to a fairly short list of places I want to visit as well. I often do the same in terms of activities and restaurants – I narrow down those lists and ask for his thoughts on whichs ones are “definitely”, “I could skip that but will do it if you really want to” and “hell, no, please don’t make me.” Works well for us!

    • That is such a cunning plan. It’s difficult as Mr S does no research so he rarely knows anything about a destination…that’s where the pinterest board comes in…Where’s your next trip?

      • Melissa B

        We will be visiting Napa Valley and then New York in October, Antigua in November and have booked our 15 year wedding anniversary trip in early 2017 to French Polynesia (Moorea and Bora Bora), which is a huge bucket list item for me! I love the pinterest board idea! I used to blog but it fell by the wayside and I’ve been meaning to pick it up again – mostly I loved having my travel memories saved somewhere. Found your site when researching Bora Bora and love it! Such great info.

        • Ahhh I hope you start your blog again soon! Bora Bora is just gorgeous!! I have a few posts on Napa Valley and New York too!

  • Clare Thomson

    Fantastic tips about the need to compromise with your other half – but remembering to enjoy your personal favourites too. Loving this month’s #travellinkup

    • Thanks Clare!! Are you off anywhere soon?

      • Clare Thomson

        I’m writing this from a tiny Greek island called Folegandros.

  • These are great tips. My husband and I are very different and even after six years of marriage, we’re still working on compromising. But we’re getting there. I am also the planner (it’s really fun for me) so he knows that if he really wants to do something, he has to let me know or it will get forgotten.

    • Lol! That’s true do you ever think of assigning your husband one afternoon to come up with a plan or something?

      • Haha I would love to do that except I think it would add more stress because he leaves things until the very last minute. Which would be perfectly fine if it were just the two of us (although it would drive me nuts) but with the kids it’s harder.

  • Nicola

    These are some fab tips – I completely agree with what you are saying about compromise, but also about still being able to have your own space if you are away together!

    • Definitely give and take – and if you fight you’ll probably make up in the end!

  • TravelWithNanoB

    Agree with every single word in this post, especially making the memories together and trying something new! You two make such a beautiful couple as well as travel partners and seem to have developed a great “routine” that works for both and helps create memorable experiences. I particularly love how you divide the responsibilities during travel and push each other to get out of your comfort zones. 🙂 xoxo, nano

    • That’s such a lovely thing to say. I can so that you and Mr B have a marriage that works beautifully too!

  • Aw, this was such a sweet post! I love that you and Mr. S are cool with doing your own thing once in a while – I need to work on that. I get grumpy if John doesn’t want to do the same thing as me, but then I feel a little anxious doing my own thing in a new place. Little steps, I suppose!

    • Oh I get grumpy too1 But sometimes he does it anywhere and is pretty much always glad that he did.

  • Eppie Shepherd

    Such a gorgeous post! And I love your take on the link up topic. It definitely is a learning curve travelling as a couple but its such a wonderful way to make memories. Great tips xx

    • It really is, we’ll always have lots of wonderful things to talk about in years to come.

  • Jaklien van Melick

    Ah, if only I was part of a couple… 🙂

  • This is such a great post, Angie! I couldn’t agree more with your suggestions. I’m always guilty of bringing something up at the wrong time and it’s so true, you’ve got to make sure you compromise! xx

  • Love this…travelling as a couple works so well if both of you play to your strengths like you say. My other half hates planning…I love it! He’s great with technology where as I am rubbish so it just works! 🙂

    • Yeah! Mine hates planning too! I love it so much…sometimes too much!!

  • Couldn’t agree more! I love travelling with my husband, getting to try new things and exploring new places 🙂 Great tips!

  • Angie, this post is the perfect guide on how to travel as a couple. Travelling to a destination that suits both your interests is so important but I love how you combine two, or several, destinations so that you can both enjoy and get what you want from your travels 🙂

    • Thanks Emma!! I loved thinking up the tips and how they related to my personal experiences.

  • Totally agree with your tips and choosing a destination that suits you both is definitely the way forward! I love the photo of you in a Porsche – very glam!!

    • Thank you lovely!! It was actually a Ferrari in Milan!! We felt very special 😉

  • Love this – you are like my alter ego as this is all true for us as well! My niggle is seeing grumpy couples on holiday, I couldn’t agree more about not getting grumpy!

    • I know! It’s so awkward when you’re sitting next and grumpy couple in a restaurant, you don’t want to be *that* person!!

  • Binny Shah-Patel

    Love this and it resonates with us. We always have a trying time on road trips LOL and compromise on what we want to see and do. Amazing post as always

  • I really enjoyed this post! I normally find articles about how to travel as couple a bit obvious, but I really liked your suggestions about airing problems respectfully, taking time apart and pushing each other to try new things. I’ll definitely be borrowing the idea of sharing a destination specific Pinterest board so both people know what to expect!

    • Yes! I was worried about just stating the obvious but I’m so glad this was helpful.

  • Most important takeaway: never let hangry happen. Plan every travel experience around food 😉

  • Nawwww love these! You guys are such a great travel couple 🙂

  • Aww, you really know how to tug at the heart strings! You two are the cutest! It was great to finally meet Mr S the other week.

    Polly xx

  • Totally agree with all of these! Especially the time apart bit. My husband and I need time apart at home, so why should it be any different on holiday? I think I need to work on the reliving memories bit now, I’m useless at printing photos etc. I want to get into photo books but it just seems like a totally mammoth task!

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