Hope you enjoy another wonderful guest post on travelling by the lovely Jane of Deluminators!
Travelling alone is encouraged nowadays, and rightly so. It teaches you independence and self reliance. I’ve done it and enjoyed it. But you know what? I think I prefer travelling with friends. Not that I’m willing to wait around for people to become available if I do want to go somewhere, but I do like to try and round up a buddy or two for a trip. I know this is what most people do, and what I say in this post doesn’t make me special. Just consider it an ode to the friends I’ve travelled with over the years.
My best travel memories are those that involve travelling with friends. Probably because I’m more likely to make stupid decisions when I’m with other people, and the funniest stories are born when things go wrong (as long as nothing catastrophic happens). When I’m alone, I’m extra sensible and play it pretty safe. With friends? We’ve made some pretty bad choices. Resulting in situations like when my friend had to literally pick us up off the streets of Amsterdam because we underestimated that space cake.
Travelling with other people also keeps your mind pried wide open. One pro presented for travelling alone is that you get to make all the decisions as to where you want to go and what you want to do. But there have been so many things friends have had to persuade me into, which I ended up enjoying. Like visiting cities which are now on my favourites list (hello Prague and Ronda), or spending a week in a village in Tanzania with no electricity, hot water, or reception. Because of this, I’ve learned to compromise. I used to think that meant losing out on what I wanted, but most of the time I get something better than expected.
Travelling with friends can be challenging in a different way to solo travel. I’ve seen fast friendships completely wrecked after a trip. I guess the high expectations and stressors in unfamiliar environments bring out personality clashes that would’ve stayed buried back home. Who knew trying to find a place to eat could result in so much passive aggression? I work with the concept of “what happens on a trip stays on the trip”, and seeing that I’ve been the asshole in many a travel situation, I assume my friends have similar systems for dealing with my bullshit (like my anxious over-planning and constant need to go to the toilet). It’s interesting that travelling with acquaintances I don’t know too well actually goes a lot smoother, because we were forced to be polite to each other.
If your friendship survives a trip, you know you guys could probably survive anything. Plus, you’ll have enough inside jokes to last you the rest of your lives.
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