Your expectations = their Expectations
If you want to take a trip, travel with someone who has similar interests and mindset as you do, because you don't want the trip to turn into a source of constant tension. Frankly, it's no fun. A perfect vacation with a friend is very simple; you plan together, you party together. Most importantly, make sure you both have similar expectations and interests from the expedition. That way, you will have a companion in almost every part of the trip. If you want to gape at the Great Canyon and be awed by it, try finding someone who wishes the same.
The pro bono entertainer
I believe that people who can turn a frown upside down are hidden gems that everybody needs during a trip. Flight got delayed? Missed your cab? Poor weather hits during the tour? Yes, they all sound tragic, but it would be worse if you have a mate who incessantly complains about the downsides of your trip. At times like these a giggling feat is all you need to make the sun shines even in the dullest rainfall; a lip-curling fuss just will not do. Understanding the compromises and behaving accordingly while retaining a smile is one of the best traits a travel companion can have.
The partner who values money
Planning with your partner and deciding how much you both are willing to spend is a good idea, pre-vacation. In addition, both of you should have similar generosity when spending; it is a lot more fun when you do not have to count every dime to split the bill equally. However, it is also a bummer when your companion does not pay their share of expenses, or drags you into overpriced shopping. You may also feel awkward if he/she does not want to spend as much as you do. Talk it through and make sure you both are on the same page, so that you can enjoy the trip without any financial bumps.
The curious explorer
Traveling is all about making memories worth cherishing and experiencing new things. Hence, you will want someone who likes exploring, or has enthusiasm towards everything. Taking pleasure in every small moment is contagious and it helps you get some relief from your normal life.
When flexibility is key
Try finding a companion who is flexible and willing to change in order to gain the fullest experience out of the expedition. If you go with someone who sticks to his/her own ways, it will heavily influence the authenticity of the trip. Compromise is key, starting from palette, to attire, behaviour and even habits.
To cling or not to cling, that is the question
You may want the perfect travel partner, but you really do not want someone who’ll be attached to you, hip-to-hip, throughout the entire trip. Vacations also involve finding a sanctuary. A clingy friend will not help you achieve. Hence you need a partner who understands the concept of “alone time”. Sometimes finding peace may simply mean to behold the beauty of a tourist site or to reflect on an eventful day right before going to bed at night. Whatever it is, a good companion will know when to be quiet and to give you space; knowing when to be silent makes everything better, period.
Motivator and memory maker
When on a trip, the best moments occur during the most spontaneous moments of the trip. To clarify my point, I am not leaning on any illegal or very dangerous activities! Vacations are all about saying “yes”. You make the best memories from the most impromptu plans; the ultimate fun happens when you do something that is unprecedented to you. It gives you something intriguing to talk about when you return home. Sometimes all you need is approval from just one person when you are in doubt and your companion should be there next to you, ready to give sanction. Moreover, he/she should also encourage you to do things that you normally would not do.
Life saving skills
It may sound like a buzz-kill, but accidents happen. Emergencies may arise and they are inevitable sometimes. An ideal friend could, if they had to, talk to the police, or know how to do a mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, or even relay your medical history. Whatever it is, a sincere and useful partner like this is indispensable whether on vacation or in regular life.
One of the main purpose of any trip is to meet new people, especially the locals. If your companion does not have the ability to blend in with newly met people, or shows any sort of repulsive behavior, chances are those people will be unwilling to interact with you too. It is compulsory for your comrade to uphold an affable attitude and an outgoing personality.
You will most likely come across some culture which will seem alien to you while travelling and in cases like these, it is extra important for you and your companion to be respectful to foreign traditions. A friend who ridicules or criticises the hosting culture will probably not be well received. Travelling with someone who takes interest in the local custom has its own perks. You will not only have a good time, you will be also treated hospitably and you can even get the opportunity to learn a great deal about a foreign culture and/or language. For instance, if you meet an Indian host, greet them with the famous “Namaste”.
Being street smart
Do you want to wander helplessly on your first ever trip to, for instance, an exotic island? Surely, no one would like that. However, you may encounter this misfortune if neither you, nor your mate have a good sense of direction. A great navigator, with good map reading skills is a crucial trait for a smooth trip. When wandering the streets of an unfamiliar city, “street smart” is the way to go.
This article was republished under a special arrangement with Tiger Tours Limited.