You’re both in a foreign country, out of your comfort zone, and possibly having to deal with stressful situations. If you don’t want to end the trip filing for divorce you should avoid making the following mistakes.
1. Not planning the trip together.
Imagine if you wake up and your partner has already booked a session of aromatherapy, exfoliation, and oil massage. If the first thing that comes to mind is that you’re not sure you like mud on your face and that your feet are really ticklish, then something went wrong.
What if you had envisioned late breakfasts and mojitos by the pool all week, but your spouse had filled each day with several activities? And they had all been paid for? Sulking wouldn’t solve the problem.
Planning is a special part of the trip and if not done together, one half of the couple might not be happy with the other’s decisions. It’s also a good way to assess your expectations and plan it in a way that both agree.
2. Compromising and never exploring on your own.
Imagine you’re in Barcelona and your spouse comes to you excited when they find out Barca is playing that afternoon. “Who’s Barca?” is not really the reply they are expecting! You actually want to go to La Boqueria Market, but give in to keep them happy.
At the game, when you ask yourself for the third time “What the hell am I doing here?” You realise you regret your decision and start resenting them for that.
It’s okay to do stuff separately. You could easily have avoided the headache by going to market on your own and meeting later for tapas and sangria. Both of you would have had a nice time without making any compromise.
It’s good to remember that you’re not joined at the hip and that it’s healthy for each to have their own experiences. It’s not like you should never compromise, but if you really don’t want to do something, you don’t have to.
3. Believing it’s going to be perfect.
Shit happens when you travel. When your partner is having a violent bout of Delhi Belly, you’re going to see a side of them you wish you never knew existed. When they are considering wearing diapers, you know it’s the trip of lifetime!
You’re bound to have stressful situations. The way you and your spouse react to them is going to define if a small problem will ruin your trip or if you’re going to laugh it off and just enjoy the moment.
4. Not talking about money.
People don’t all have the same budgets and we all like to spend our money differently, so things can go sideways if a couple doesn’t talk about it before hitting the road. A person used to all-inclusive resorts might have a heart attack just at the mention of staying in a hostel.
You shouldn’t go into debt just to avoid the money conversation. If your partner loves you I’m sure you’ll find a middle ground where you both can have a nice time. You don’t have to stretch every dollar.
5. Not communicating.
At the end of the day it all comes down to communication. Before, during, and after the trip. Small annoyances tend to slowly build up and when you’re least expecting your significant other goes mental shouting, “If you bloody remind me again about what time it is, my head will explode!”
You don’t want that!
If they clearly aren’t good with maps and you’re fed up with getting lost, you should kindly say something and take charge. If you’re annoyed they spend too much on massages or cocktails, explain that you didn’t really budget for these things.
More often than not your spouse is completely oblivious to what’s happening and will happily oblige, saving both of you an unnecessary argument.