Going on trips with your significant other is exciting, romantic and can serve as a true test of your compatibility and patience.
For as we all know, anything can happen when you’re travelling — plans change, flights get delayed, baggage gets misplaced, and nerves get frazzled.
But it’s an adventure if you’re with the person you love, and there are ways to make your travels as a couple a lot smoother!
You might not be the savviest jet-setting couple (yet!), but you and your significant other can up your travel game with these ultra-useful travelling tips.
Divide and conquer
There are a million and one things to remember when you are travelling, from planning the itinerary and packing to flying and going on the actual trip.
To make sure that little details don’t get forgotten about and that effort is shared, it’s important to make a list and divide the tasks.
Make the list together; decide on simple categories such as “Packing”, “Accommodations”, “Air Travel”, “Land Transportation” and so on. After filling out the specific tasks under each category, decide (in the most democratic way possible!) who gets to be in charge of accomplishing which tasks.
A great app that can help you with this is Google Keep, which is a straightforward notes and lists app. You can check tasks off when you’re done, and you can share it with your partner so you’re both kept up-to-date on your progress.
Think smart, pack smart
Packing — you either love it or hate it, but it’s a crucial part of the travel process. Besides making sure that you have everything you need for the trip ahead, consider packing some of your things in your partner’s suitcase and vice versa.
By making sure that you’ve got the basics (some clothes, footwear, toiletries, medicines and chargers) in each other’s luggage, you are now set and protected just in case the thing we all dread happens — lost baggage.
Losing your suitcase is one of the biggest nightmares that can happen while travelling, and it’s a huge pain to deal with, especially if it means getting stuck without the things you need.
Avoid the panic and extra stress of having to purchase clothes and other needed items in a foreign country while trying to sort out your lost bags — split the packing and make sure each partner has necessities in the other’s luggage.
Carry your own important documents
It’s important that you and your significant other carry your own important documents. Some couples like to designate one person to hold passports and boarding pass, for example, but this isn’t a good idea. Why not?
First, it’s more convenient for each person to have their identification and travel documents on them at all times during travel. Second, if you or your partner get separated for any reason (we hope this doesn’t happen), each of you will still have access to tickets, passports and so on and can still move around easily.
What you can do is carry copies of your partner’s important information, in both printed and digital formats, so that just in case he or she loses something, you’ve got them covered.
Scan all your and your significant other’s identification and travel documents ahead of time and print copies and save them on an easy-to-access shared location such as Google Drive.
You can use CamScanner, a cool mobile scanning app that converts photos of documents into PDF files in a snap.
Choose aeroplane seats carefully
While many consider the window seat in an aeroplane to be the most coveted spot, I personally think that having clear and easy access to the aisle is the way to go. You can get up anytime you want to stretch your legs or use the bathroom, and you don’t have to keep bugging someone else to get up every single time.
When travelling with your partner, consider your choice of seats strategically. Most aeroplane rows have three seats. If you and your significant other are the types who will hunker down and sleep for most of the flight, choose the window and middle seat. If you are the active types who need to stand up, stretch and move around often, select the aisle and middle seats.
Thoughtful seat selection is crucial for having a smooth, comfortable flight. If the flight isn’t full, ask the flight attendants if you and your partner can move to a free row. You can stretch out, get comfy and enjoy the flight in peace.
Designate a driver
If you and your significant other are flying long haul and plan to drive on arrival, it’s a good idea to decide on a designated driver.
Most international flights offer free alcoholic beverages, and boy is it fun to take advantage of that, especially when you’re flying with your partner. Don’t forget, though, that upon arrival, someone’s got to drive the rental car!
Designating a driver before the party on the plane starts is a smart move so that expectations are set and possible arguments are avoided later on (and troubles like accidents or run-ins with the law wherever you are light-headed!).
Better yet, so that no one feels left out, decide how much party time will happen on the plane.
Limit the drinking to a decent amount and stop at a certain time so that rest and recovery can happen way before landing.
That way, whoever is chosen as the designated driver doesn’t feel like they’re missing out on anything, and safety remains a priority.