One of my guy friends once told me that he never goes on vacation with any of the women
he dates because he knows traveling together would ruin his relationship.
After traveling with my relatives on many occasions, I was close to adopting my friend’s attitude, just to preserve the ties of family.
But my trips with friends had gone well enough.
So when my friend, Sandra, announced that she wanted to spend her milestone birthday traveling for two weeks in Southern Africa, I knew I couldn’t let my best friend travel alone. Sandra and I had traveled together many times before and had fun so I wasn’t too concerned. Judith, our newish friend and I share the same astrological sign, so I knew there’d be a good chance we’d have similar temperament.
All three of us had been out on many occasions – to concerts and dinners – but what would 2 weeks of being in such close proximity to each other do to our friendships?
So, here’s what we ended up doing that, I think, not only helped us to have a very memorable vacation and kept our friendships intact.
- Have an organizer: Someone must take the lead in planning the trip or you won’t get off the ground.
- Know each person’s interests/objectives: Sandra suggested early on that all three of us name the top 3 things we wanted to see or do while. Getting each person to identify their ‘must-sees’ ensured that each person’s interests were addressed. It also meant that each person gets to experience at least one thing she wouldn’t necessarily have chosen herself, like the safari, for example.
- Pitch in: If possible, assign each person the responsibility for planning a part of the trip. In our case, we had 3 different cities, Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg. Each person selected the city they wanted to plan. Another good way to get everyone invested in the trip and also allows each person to become the resident ‘expert’ on a particular place.
What are your tips for maintaining friendships while exploring the world?
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