8 Things to Consider When Trying to Determine if your Friend is the Perfect Travel Buddy for You

You know how they say, you don’t really know someone until you have fought with them?

Well, I have a similar kind of mentality when it comes to friends and traveling. I even say it here in one of my Instagram photo captions on my recent trip to Peru with one of my closest friends Cat:

They say traveling with your friends is the true test of friendship. I’m glad ours passes every time
 My last trip with my ever so patient and funny friend Cat going on crazy adventures through Peru! We've been travel buddies for over 2 years now.

My last trip with my ever so patient and funny friend Cat going on crazy adventures through Peru! We've been travel buddies for over 2 years now.

I could not sum this up even more perfectly. So why in the world (heh) do people declare traveling the true test of friendship? Well, simply put, traveling unleashes many sides of you that do not ever come out in your normal life. You are (typically) in a new city, country or continent even and are thrown into a completely different culture and sometimes language that you are not at all accustomed to. You have to navigate not only the streets, but the norms of the new place you are in. In addition to that, more times than not you are faced with obstacles and random (sometimes not so favorable) situations.

In summary, you go through A LOT together. Things that you normally would never have to go through in your normal life.

Over the years, as I have developed into a (self-proclaimed) seasoned traveler, I have in turn become very picky with who I travel with or just in general the kind of people I travel with. Obviously I will never find someone who matches me exactly in the way I travel (as I travel for different circumstances than most of my friends do), but the trick is finding people who though are not exact parallels of how you are as a traveler, still could complement your style. So here it is:

8 Things to Consider When Trying to Determine if your Friend is the Perfect Travel Buddy for You

 These 5 are some of my favorite people in the world. I spent a whole semester traveling all over Europe with them to some of the most beautiful places in the world.  Will   always be my most favorite semester of college.  (Santorini, Greece)

These 5 are some of my favorite people in the world. I spent a whole semester traveling all over Europe with them to some of the most beautiful places in the world. Will always be my most favorite semester of college. (Santorini, Greece)

1. Are they a Morning or Night Person? (or even better, can adjust to either?)

 Carlos and I have been friends for ages and we took our first international trip this year.  Thank goodness it passed the friendship test, hehe.  (Mexico City, Mexico)

Carlos and I have been friends for ages and we took our first international trip this year. Thank goodness it passed the friendship test, hehe. (Mexico City, Mexico)

This is a big thing for me and probably one of the first things I ask a friend before traveling with them.

If you have not already caught on, I am a morning person. Like, very much so a morning person. Even on vacation, I wake up at the crack of dawn (maybe a little later if I had a late night) just like I typically do when I am not on vacation. This may or may not have to do with the fact that I make it my mission on every trip to get to very popular tourist attractions before the masses arrive. I mean how else do you think I get those shots at famed places with no other humans in them?

When I traveled with my friend Carlos to Mexico City, the first thing I did before purchasing the tickets was ask him if he was willing to wake up at 5:30 am every morning to take photos with me and continue on with the rest of our day from there.

I hardly ever travel with anyone who isn’t a morning person or at least someone who can adjust for our trip.

2. What do they like to do on trips?

 Hiking trip with my bestfriends Elaina and Romy to Angels Landing! (Zion National Park, Utah)

Hiking trip with my bestfriends Elaina and Romy to Angels Landing! (Zion National Park, Utah)

Are they the adventurous “let’s go on hikes, jump off cliffs, ride horses through valleys and climb sides of mountains” type or are they more of a “let’s go to museums, fine dine everyday and go to the best clubs in town” type?

These are important to know before you travel with them! The worst thing you want to do is get to the final planning stages of the trip or even to the destination and realize your friend/travel buddy only wants to go to museums while you were fully intending to hike every trail in your new destination.

3. Are they relaxed or on the go travelers?

I know for a fact that I could never travel with relaxed travelers. I am the type of person who will pack everyday of my trip to the brim. From the moment I wake up to when I am supposed to go to bed. I work an insane amount of hours to be able to even afford the places I go to, so I like to make sure I do as much as possible so my trip is worth every penny.

So be sure to ask your friend what type of traveler they are before you book that trip with them. The last thing you want is the expectation to have a relaxed tropical beach vacation while your friend expects to cover every inch of the new city you are in. Yikes, talk about trouble in paradise!

4. Are they picky about accommodations? (Vice Versa)

This is perhaps one of the biggest and most important things you should discuss on before clicking “purchase” on that plane ticket check out page. A lot of other things such as excursions, places you want to go to or eat at can be negotiable, but negotiating between a 5 star luxury resort and a 9 star hostel is a hard bargain.

So make sure you it make it clear that you want to rent a bed in a shared dorm and not pay $350 a night for a luxury resort. Hey, for some people, that’s a deal breaker!

 Traveled with my friend Krisinda all over Italy!  Learned the hard way that I should probably tell my friends how much I walk during my travels...sorrryy.  (Venice, Italy)

Traveled with my friend Krisinda all over Italy! Learned the hard way that I should probably tell my friends how much I walk during my travels...sorrryy. (Venice, Italy)

 Horseback riding through  Viñales Valley  with Rawrjay aka one of my favorite people to see the world with! (Viñales Valley, Cuba)

Horseback riding through Viñales Valley with Rawrjay aka one of my favorite people to see the world with! (Viñales Valley, Cuba)

5. Do they have allergies or dietary restrictions and will this affect the way you travel?

If your friend is Vegan, maybe eating your way through every kind of jamón in España probably isn’t the best idea. Is your friend lactose-intolerant, allergic to nuts or gluten-free?

These are all things to consider before jumping on that plane and if it is something that will affect you and your experience significantly!

6. Are they willing to adjust to your necessities? (Vice Versa)

Following the last point, just because your friend is Vegan does not mean you can never travel with them ever because you are a meat lover. The better question is: are you willing to adjust to it? Are you willing to eat at Vegan Friendly restaurants or go to restaurants that offer a lot of vegan options? This is just one example.

Take me for example. I can only travel with people who understand the life of a blogger. What does this mean? When I travel, I specifically go to places that are Instagram worthy. In fact, more times than not, I go out of my way or plan my schedule around all the most instagrammable locations of the new city I am going to. In addition, I often spend a considerable amount of time waiting for people to leave the spot (if I don’t go at the crack of dawn) or taking as many shots as possible to get the perfect shot. Same goes for all the food we eat too! So that is why I only travel with a select few people who understand my circumstances. Shoutout to all my travel besties who have been putting up with my antics for over 2 years!

 Paddle boating in a lake at  Parque Retiro  in Madrid with my bestfriend Lalo,  who I actually   became friends with through traveling!  (Madrid, Spain)

Paddle boating in a lake at Parque Retiro in Madrid with my bestfriend Lalo, who I actually became friends with through traveling! (Madrid, Spain)

 Simone and I traveled through so many places in Europe together and she's also one of my favorite people to travel with because  i  t's better when you have   someone who loves to shop and take their time getting ready as much as you do.  (Georgetown, Washington D.C.)

Simone and I traveled through so many places in Europe together and she's also one of my favorite people to travel with because it's better when you have someone who loves to shop and take their time getting ready as much as you do. (Georgetown, Washington D.C.)

7. Do you have similar budgets?

Being on the same page (or at least around the same page) with budgets while traveling is important. Since you guys will be doing pretty much everything together (unless you are okay with splitting up from time to time), you need to make sure that your budgets align.

The last thing you want is wanting to go sailing while sipping champagne on a yacht and not being able to do it because you didn’t check with your friend if that type of excursion was in their budget.

 

8. Do your travel styles complement each other? Or are you able to compromise?

 One of the sweetest girls in the world and one of the only people who loves taking as much pictures as I do!  Only I might enjoy being in front of the camera a lot more hehe  (Segovia, Spain)

One of the sweetest girls in the world and one of the only people who loves taking as much pictures as I do! Only I might enjoy being in front of the camera a lot more hehe (Segovia, Spain)

Are you an OCD Type A Planner? Is your friend the same? Are you both able to compromise with what you want on your itinerary or is it a “my way or the highway” type of situation? This is definitely way more important than you think, you’d be surprised!

I am such an OCD Type A Planner, so I specifically travel with the friends I travel with because they basically allow me to take full reign of planning our itinerary, as long as I include the places and things they want to do and see. Yep you read that right, I get to plan all our excursions, places we go to eat and places we go to see!

I honestly lucked out with my travel buddies because we fit with each other so perfectly!

Lastly, while the title of this blog post states “The Perfect Travel Buddy”, realize that if you are both true travelers, there will not be any perfect buddy! You are put through so many situations and circumstances while traveling that you are bound to get in some sort of disagreement or argument. The key is finding the kind of people that still make your trip memorable and worthwhile, even with the little bumps in the road!

Dedicating this blog post to all (aka the very few) people I have traveled with on numerous occasions who have proven time and time again that our friendship passes the "true test of friendship”!

What things do you consider before traveling with a friend?

Til’ Next Time,

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