Don’t go hungry
Because, let’s face it – nearly all of us turn into snappy, unreasonable monsters when we’re verging on the ‘hangry’ side of things. Almost every utterly pointless argument I had with my boyfriend started because we went too long without food.
The answer? Keep snacks on you – cereal bars, bananas – anything to quickly scoff on the road. A firm food fix when van-living turned out to be Vegemite and peanut butter sandwiches (yes really).
Plan in advance
It’s fun to be spontaneous but it really does save a lot of unnecessary stress to plan in advance – book accommodation for peace of mind. I’ll never forget the time we decided to turn up on a Thai island during peak season without a place to stay. Surprise, surprise everywhere was fully booked….except a cockroach infested over-priced shack complete with blood stained bedding. We didn’t sleep a wink and vowed to book in advance from then on!
Respect each other
Living in each other’s pockets 24 hours a day can be pretty intense but it’s still important to treat each other fairly and keep tempers at bay.
If you’re annoyed about something, take a deep breath and think to yourself – is this really worth a debate? Half the time it’ll be over sometime minor… who used the last squeeze of sun cream, who forgot to zip the mosquito net etc.
After months on the road, it’s possible to become a bit reliant on each other and forget how to socialise as you would back home. Couples travelling together can be harder to approach than friends and solo travellers – you’ll need to make the effort to strike up a conversation. Meeting new people is a great way to share tips, exchange stories and learn. Who knows…you might make friends for life.
Spend time apart
Remember that you don’t always have to be joined at the hip to have a good time. Go on a mini shopping trip alone, take a cooking course, have a dip in the sea, play games with the locals. Whatever it may be, it’s good for the mind and the soul to have a breather sometimes. You’ll even have something fresh to talk about when you meet up later in the day.
Have each other’s backs
We all know travelling can be an incredible life-changing experience but sometimes, things can go wrong. Cards can be sucked into cash machines, money can be stolen, vehicles can break down and accidents can happen. It’s important during these times to always look out for each other. When things get a bit shitty and all you want to do is have a cry and a hug, do it. The beauty of the situation is you have your other half there, so prop each other up.
Use each other’s strengths
Does you partner have an incredible sense of direction? Designate them as the official map reader. Do you have super skills in finding the best transport deals? We can’t all be good everything so split the tasks up and be a team.
Be silly, laugh until your tummy aches and try to see the funny side of life.
Belly flop into the sea on Bali’s beaches, have one too many buckets in Bangkok, giggle at each other’s dodgy accents, try on ridiculous outfits in the markets – it’s all part of the fun. Take photographs, keep a diary – you’re memories will last forever. Be partners in crime and keep smiling!
Do you have any more tips? Leave your comments below!