Travel Tips

Picking a Travel Partner: The Importance of Travel Partner Compatibility

Photo by Matt Sisneros

Photo by Matt Sisneros

Overlooked idea?

When traveling to a new destination, selecting the ideal partner (or partners) based on a compatibility criteria is something I believe is overlooked by many. As uncomfortable as it may be to hear, visiting a new location with your best friend, significant other, or family member may not always be the best option. More often than you might realize, there are other people in your life that can help you get more out of your travels and have an overall more enjoyable, hassle-free experience. To help you figure out if someone is the perfect fit for your upcoming trip, I’ve developed a list of things to consider before making plans set in stone.

How to not be awkward about it…

Going down a list like this with someone can be taken as a sign of disrespect. Depending on the type of relationship you have with the partner in consideration, you may or may not be able to bring up these topics outright. If not, there’s no need to fret. Most of these can be snuck into everyday conversation with a little creativity.

Keep in mind…

With your unique set of interests, you might rank these in a completely different way than I do. As you scan the list, make a note of what specific topics would be a deal breaker for you.

Things to Consider:

  • Budgeting (per day)

    • Meals

    • Transportation

    • Attractions

    • Accommodations

    • Souvenirs

  • Interest in...

    • Museums, architecture, and art galleries

    • Meeting locals

    • Taking pictures

    • Adventurous activities

    • Staying in a single spot (e.g. park or beach) vs roaming around

    • Clubs vs bars vs staying in (+ preference in music)

  • Communication

    • Attitude when things turn south

    • Attitude when hungry

    • Level of proficiency with the local language

    • Manners with strangers

    • Addiction to social media

  • Planning/Scheduling

    • Preference between free flowing/schedule

    • Amount of time needed to get ready

    • Hours of sleep needed to function

    • Morning/night person

    • First time to the city, country, and/or continent

  • Lifestyle

    • Emphasis on cleanliness (shower frequency, shared space) [h/t Garrett Rich]

    • Willingness to use public transport/walk vs preference for taxi/rideshare

    • Dietary restrictions

    • Dietary habits (meal times, meal frequency)

Are there any deal breakers I missed? Let me know in the comment section.