Tuesday, March 07, 2006

10 Ideas to Make Traveling Partnerships Work (For Everyone).

budget adventure travel, family adventure vacation

Make Your Budget Adventure Travel More Fun With A Group or Companion

There is safety in numbers. Not only that, traveling with a group or a companion can make your adventure travel experience more memorable and exciting (hopefully in good ways). Some groups form from pre-existing friendships while others form as a result of convenience.

Here are some tips to make traveling with companions a smoother and more enjoyable experience:

1. Involve all partners in the planning of your adventure vacation. Let each person have his or her say in what interests them, what places they want to see, etc. This is a good way to find out ahead of time if each person’s agenda is compatible. Better to find out now than when you are all in another country. But beware of the partner who avoids the planning process. Often this is the very person who later decides that he or she (along with everyone else in the party) must or must not do something later on. Don’t let this type of personality take charge over the whole group and ruin everyone else’s vacation.

2. Delegate individual pieces of your plan. For example, if your group is traveling to Paris, one member may be assigned the job of researching the Louvre or Notre Dame Cathedral. When you arrive, that member will then be your group’s tour guide for that segment of your trip.

3. If your partner is a spouse or lover, go the extra mile to include things that interest your companion. A vacation is often a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and your partner will hardly be in a position to go back to see the things he or she wanted to see later on if you start calling all the shots. Conversely, if your partner has a take charge personality, speak your mind and insist on certain things you really want. Choose your battles carefully, but making your travel experience a two-way street will strengthen your relationship and make the entire trip enjoyable for both of you.

4. Decide on all the financial aspects ahead of time. Determine what expenses are up to each individual and what costs will be shared by the group. Nothing can suck the "budget" out of a budget adventure vacation faster than inequitable financial planning. There may be some things one or two of you want to do that are out of the price range of some of the others. Do not feel guilty if this means some of you go separate ways on these days. For example, if you have been wanting to see a certain Broadway play, don’t let the others stop you just because they don’t want to pay that much money. Let them find an activity they want to do while you see your play.

5. Build in opportunities for each person to go their separate ways from time to time. Establish a rendezvous place and time, as well as each person’s itinerary.

6. Consider buying those inexpensive walkie talkies (you can get a set for around $49 at Wal Mart) to keep in touch. Even a set in this price range should have a talk range of five miles or more.

7. Assert yourself. Don’t let anyone else in your group take control to such a point that you return from your vacation with an empty feeling of having missed out on some of the things you really wanted to do. Speak up during the planning, and don’t let someone change these plans later unless you freely consent. If you are not by nature an assertive person, remind yourself that you may not ever get a chance to return to Rome or Paris or where ever you are traveling to.

8. Don’t let a committee mentality take over. When groups make decisions together, they tend toward mediocrity. This means you and your companions may find yourselves omitting the unusual or off beat experiences that often add so much extra zest to a vacation experience.

9. Pool your resources, talents and experiences. One person might be an excellent photographer or have the best photography equipment. Another may speak the local language, and another may have previously visited this destination before. Be sure to draw on what each of you have to offer to create a better experience for the whole group. (But be sure to compensate the photographer of the group for expenses like film if you all wish to have copies of the photos after you return home).

10. Allow time to get away from the others. In the end, this is your adventure vacation. We all need our breathing room and privacy, so feel free to tell the others you when you want to stay at the hotel or sit in a local café and just read your book. Sometimes even an adventure vacation needs time to relax before dashing off to the next adventure.

COPYRIGHT © 2006, Charles Brown. All rights reserved.

budget adventure travel, family adventure vacation

No comments: