It seems to me that solo travelling is getting all the spotlight right now. I mean why not right? You decide the itinerary and pace and you don’t have to waste time waiting for that one friend that is always late/slow/talkative/has-to-take-pictures-of-EVERY-DAMN-FLOWERLEAFANDROCK.
But IMO, I always prefer travelling with company. It doesn’t matter if it is just my SO and I or with my family and friends. I just enjoy sharing good experiences with the people I love.
We all know the need to build relationships with our SOs and family. But like all good relationships, friendships need a little watering too. So here’s to FRIENDSHIP and a list of reasons to travel with your best buds.
1. Having a Co-commentator for when you see something weird
The best part about travelling is people watching. All the stereotypes you have seen in media actually exists!
Okay…maybe not everyone is like that. But when you do see a mustached man in a striped shirt cycling past you in-front of the Eiffel tower carrying a baguette, I just have to turn around to my bud and say…
2. Split the Planning of where to Eat, Sleep and Sight-see
Its easier to cover all bases when you have people to share the responsibility of planning with. Just make sure that you all communicate well with each other to ensure that everyone’s needs are met.
“Ok., who is in charge of where to eat? Remember Frank doesn’t like any of those vegan crap”
3. Lowering your average costs
There are loads of things that you might be thankful to have company for. If for example, I find myself tired after a day of sightseeing in London, I could share a cab with my friends to travel more comfortably.
30 mins Cab ride back = £32, shared among 4 friends= £8 is much better…Wait…a cab ride costs S$65?? HELL NO
It usually works out for most other things though.
4. Being able to sample everything on the menu
The foodie in you is going to appreciate it when you can order more than one item on the menu.
Just ask for sharing plates after 🙂 Bon Appetit!
5. Help to keep each other safe
Travelling in foreign places, especially if you don’t speak the language can be dangerous. Its a good thing than that your friends are with you. I suppose muggers are unlikely to target larger groups, but even if they do, just make sure you outrun your friends (let them take the fall.)
More practically, your friends are there to prevent you from acting like a total ass-hat and “asking for a fight”.
6. Have People to Laugh (or Cry) with
No matter how good your plan is, SHIT HAPPENS. Trains get delayed, accommodation get cancelled etc. At least you can comfort yourself by saying that you’re not alone in this. All for one, one for all right.
And when things go well, we can party and play harder than any solo travelers out there simply because we know we’ve got each other’s back.
7. See Their True Colours
In chinese we have this saying: 患难见真情 (huan nan jian zhen qing). Meaning that only in times of trouble, do we really get to see the truest side of people.
Travelling together can be a stressful experience and how we deal with it can make or break a friendship.
The key to this is give and take. No “Me-first” attitude and whenever agreeable, do spend some alone time on the trip as well. Like you don’t have to go shopping at every store together since your pace and interests may be different (if you don’t get to buy the one souvenir you want, the regret will make you hate your friend forever!)
“Are you done with this shop yet?”
8. Learn to Negotiate
As mentioned, going on a trip together requires a lot of give and take. But how do you ensure that you yourself aren’t have your needs met?
Really though, this could be a important skill for your future career especially if you meet mean bosses or colleagues.
“If I can deal with my whiny, demanding friend 24 hours a day for a week. I can deal with you.”
9. Deepen your friendship through shared experiences
We always forget that with friendship, shared experiences are important. Doing things together, such as travelling and not just chatting over a meal, can make us feel like we’re a part of each other’s life and gives us opportunities to discover more about each other.
10. Life is too Short to Worry Alone
Go travelling with your friends and Que Sera Sera. The best that can happen? You take your friendship to a whole new bestie-level.
…or the worst being that you would now have weeded out more ass-hats and b****es from your all too exciting life.
May your friendships last longer than a Nokia 3310!