What If Your Partner Doesn't Want to Travel? But You Do!
We all know this story. Whether we lived in, heard about it or maybe are stuck in it now, it’s a pretty common situation for travel lovers. When you’re in a relationship and 1 wants to go and the other doesn’t, what do you do? You're probably left with thoughts like, how do I convince my boyfriend to go on vacation with me? Or, insert girlfriend, husband, or wife into the mix and it's all the same messy concoction.
Rewind to 2012 and this was me. I was in a serious relationship with my college boyfriend and honestly thought he was the “one.” *Spoiler- He wasn’t. He wasn’t even close* I had just been accepted into the Peace Corps upon graduation and was counting down the days until I left. He was too but for other reasons.
See, he had 0 desire to travel. Sure, we went on weekend getaways to the mountains or the beach but he really couldn't have cared less about experiencing new cultures, languages and food- all the things I was genuinely passionate about. We were young and naïve and thought we would get through those 18 months I'd be abroad. I thought long distance wouldn’t be a problem, my travel bug would die and I’d go contently back home when my service ended. Although breaking up before a trip wasn't in my mind, we did end up breaking up during it. Let me tell you now, our relationship ended because I was wrong about all of those things, long distance only being one of them.
Whether you want to move abroad or stay abroad, grab all of A Way Abroad’s freebies and challenges by joining our VIP MemberVault.
Find everything you need to take the leap in one convenient place and get weekly trainings straight to your inbox!
For me, the more I saw the more I wanted to see.
My time abroad didn’t kill my bug, it made it grow into an all consuming monster (but a really cute monster that I continue to love and nourish every day).
So, I’ll be honest here:
Sometimes it really comes down to that .
You chose: your partner or your spirit. Maybe that seems dramatic to some but to me, that’s what it felt like. Travel fuels me more than most things can and I just wasn’t willing to swallow it. *Spoiler 2- I met and married a wonderful man while we were both working abroad in Panama that values travel and adventure just as much as I do. And he’s sexy, smart and kind. So it does exist!*
But sometimes it doesn’t have to be one or the other.
There are plenty of highly functioning, happy, supportive relationships out there that are able to make it work. But how?
I see posts daily on various travel groups I’m a part of asking strangers for tips on what to do in this situation. Typically they want to travel but their S/O isn't into it or even worse, is guilting them about their desire.
In my opinion this is something so very personal and not anything someone else can tell you what to do in black & white but some outside guidance can definitely help.
You guys saw how I handled the situation in the past and I promised myself I’d never even go on a date with someone who didn't share this view with me. But that doesn’t mean that’s how it should be for each one of us.
I recently connected with Mara, a really awesome girl who joined our community and reached out for a chat. Mara (say “Hi” to her on insta! ) is a nomad at heart but her partner is more risk averse and isn’t as excited by the unknown.
Here are some highlights from our conversation and from chatting with a few other travel-minded friends. *For length purposes, I’m solely focusing on when one person in the relationship wants to move abroad or travel extensively, not just a small trip or weekend getaway.*
Tips to get your partner excited to travel:
1. take baby steps.
Before making the jump, try going on a shorter trip to get your partner use to the lifestyle. Take a road trip in your home country or go on a week-ish trip abroad. Stay in accommodations that you would be able to afford for your long trip. Don’t go to a resort if you plan on backpacking and staying in hostels during the real thing. Give your partner a true sense of what the experience will be like. You could talk about something for hours but to really get a sense of it, just do it. The idea of it could be a lot more intimidating than the real thing.
Also, make sure that first plane ride, especially if it's a long one, is a comfortable one. Show your partner that a long flight doesn't have to be something you dread but instead can be a platform to building excitement and resting up for the trip. Find out some of my flight essentials are that I never travel without!
2. Plan Your Work
If you plan on working online, get prepared. Learn a skill, build your brand and even find some clients. If your partner is nervous about the travel life, don’t add a new job at the same time. On the other hand, if you prefer to work in person, figure out what kind of job you’re suited for. While it's a tougher way to go than deciding to work online, it is possible to land your dream job abroad . There are so many options out there and many will hire you before you even step foot in the country. Ease some of the anxiety and at least know where your paychecks will be coming from.
Use your LinkedIn account to start connecting you with companies in countries you're interested in. Take some tips from someone who has worked around the world, all thanks to LinkedIn.
3. Have a Home Base
Regardless of the job you chose, consider building a home base. Traveling for an extended period of time is exhilarating yet exhausting. After years of the backpack life, I got tired. My husband and I both still love planning trips but we’ve chosen to have a “home base” to travel from. A years ago we lived in Seoul, last year we were in Ho Chi Minh and then we moved to Da Nang before going full on nomad.
HCMC is an amazing base for travelers. It’s centrally located in SE Asia so flights are short and cheap. Rent and living is also affordable so even if you just use it to take some breaks between trips it won’t blow your budget. It’s really nice to get home from a long vacation, take your pants off, lay on a couch (that you know is yours) and just not think about your next move for a bit. Your partner will get the comfort he/she desires while you’re still actually abroad, fueling your sense of curiosity just outside your door.
Trust me when I say there are so many female expats out there. What you're suggesting to your partner might not be the typical route but you absolutely aren't the only people taking advantage of this lifestyle.
4. A Break from “Normalcy” is a Good Thing
Maybe you want to move permanently abroad but maybe you’re just trying to convince your partner for a year or so out in the world. Remind them it’s a good thing professionally!
Some people fear that taking a year off will destroy them in the job market when they come back. I’ve yet to meet anyone who has transitioned back and felt hindered. All of your hard work doesn’t go out the window when you leave.
Actually just the opposite, travel is something you can easily market. It shows you’re open minded , willing to adjust and probably have a different viewpoint than those who have never gotten out. Sell it! Plus, I guarantee you’ll learn more about yourself abroad than you ever would have in your routine.
5. Express Your Opinion
Don’t be shy with your partner. Tell them, openly and honestly, how important travel is to you. Most partners want to make their S/O happy so tell them how. Don’t suppress your desire and build up resentment. At the same time, ask for them to tell you their fears or uncertainties and LISTEN.
6. Compromise is Key
When you start the conversation from #5, be ready to compromise. And I’m sorry, but if compromise is not an option, your relationship has a bigger issue than travel. Work with your partner to see what they are willing to do . Maybe they don’t want to move abroad but are willing to go on extended trips. Is that enough for you? This isn’t something anyone else can tell you how to handle. It’s so personal and depends deeply on both of your personalities and priorities.
7. Doing Things Solo is OK
As part of compromising, if there is something that you can't agree on or resolve together, it may be possible to do something on your own in a way that's still respectful of your shared life together.
I believe you can travel solo when part of a couple if necessary, as long as you do so with respect to and for your partner.
A few examples: if you're saving for goals together you want to be conscious of the money for your trip not taking away from those goals. Your partner may be okay with you being gone for a month or two, but a year may be out of the question. Maybe your partner needs a daily check in, or photos, or maybe is fine with checking in less often. Setting those rules and compromising where you can makes sure you have a great trip while also keeping your S/O happy.
Solo traveling is equally as rewarding as traveling in a couple, just in completely different ways. It's an experience I think people both in relationships and not have a lot to gain through traveling solo. Check out the top 10 things traveling solo taught me to see what you could also learn.
8. At Least You Tried
Before you go, let your partner know that nothing has to be permanent. Listen and reassess a few months in to see that you both are happy in your current abroad situation. Realize you can change your travel plans, move to a new city or even go back home. It’s not a failure if it just isn’t for you. But, do give it an honest shot. Be open to new experiences, roll with the punches and get ready for the ride of your life!
Now, when your S/O gets home, open a bottle of wine, breech the conversation and start the course, Is moving abroad right for you? to find out where you both stand. It'll help you understand what will work for both you and what steps to take to get there. You got this!
Don’t hesitate to reach out, I’m always available for a chat. Send me an email !
A lot of effort went into making this amazing piece of journalistic genius. If it helped you out, send us a quick thanks by buying us a coffee. All the money donated through Ko-Fi goes towards keeping A Way Abroad awesome. Big thanks!
The ultimate resource for women dreaming of a life abroad.
I'll help you move abroad
Consider me your virtual wingwoman when it comes to moving abroad. I’m here to answer your questions, talk options, and share my experiences, as well as to connect you with my vast expat network– so you can feel confident in your next step.
What to do if your partner doesn’t want to travel
It can be frustrating when your other half doesn’t share all the same interests as you. Even more so when one of your passions is travel – after all, isn’t exploring the world something you’re supposed to do as a couple? Is it ok to travel alone even if you’re in a relationship? Read on to discover how it really is possible to travel without your partner.
Attitudes to solo travel are changing. After two years in a pandemic and so many of our big dreams being put on hold, many of us are rethinking the way we see the world. And that means relooking at how we travel and who we travel with. So, your partner doesn’t want to visit the same places as you? Maybe it’s time to take the leap and (after talking to them about it first, of course – we’re not looking to ruin relationships here) go it alone.
Make sure you talk about travelling solo first
It’s likely that your partner is already aware that you don’t share the same love of travel. But if you’re thinking of embarking on a bout of solo travel, your first step should be to sit down and explain your plans to your partner. Make it clear that you don’t resent them, the last thing you want is to go off on a trip and leave behind bad blood. You need to set off on your new adventure with positivity and the knowledge that all is good at home.
Explain that solo travel is a positive thing for your relationship – you get to fulfil your dream of seeing the world, while your other half gets to focus on something they want to do while you’re away. The likelihood is this isn’t for a long stretch of time – 7, 10, 14, even 30 days out of a relationship isn’t long in the great scheme of things. See it as a chance to recharge your relationship batteries when you travel without your partner.
Get inspired: The top 10 ‘travelling solo’ myths debunked
Understand your solo travel options
Once you’ve talked your partner through why you want to travel solo, the next step is to understand your options – and there are a lot available to solo travellers. While the most obvious is to book yourself a single person trip, this isn’t your only option. A guided tour can offer you the best of both worlds (more detail below) and you could also try travelling with a friend or family member who has the same travel interests as you (make sure you explain this to your partner as they might be peeved that you’re travelling with someone else after you’ve said you want to go it alone!).
With a friend, you don’t have to stick together like glue – you can still explore solo travel and take single experiences and excursions. For female travellers in particular, travelling with a best female friend or in a group of women is very freeing and can feel very different to travelling with your partner.
Get inspired: Reasons to travel solo by Trafalgar guests who’ve done it
Why guided tours are great for solo travellers
Guided tours are a great option for solo travellers and can provide you with the best of both worlds, especially for those travelling solo for the first time. While you’ll get the freedom to explore and see the world without your partner for the first time, you will have the support of destination experts 24/7 so that you’re not totally on your own. There’s also the option of having a bunch of ready-made travel friends on hand to share the experience with and to relax with in the evening if you do fancy a chat. And who knows, you might even make a lifelong travel soulmate.
On a Trafalgar tour you get all that, plus an experienced Travel Director who will be there to ensure you feel safe and comfortable and who will look out for you every step of the way.
Get inspired: Find out more about travelling solo with Trafalgar
Find experiences that you and your partner can do together
It may not be that your partner doesn’t want to travel at all… maybe you just want to see different parts of the world. If so, there are ways to ensure you can still have a travel buddy even if you want to go to different places. Try to choose destinations that are close with connecting borders, or why not plan to meet up in a neighbouring country or city? That way you can each do one part of your trip solo before you meet up halfway.
Alternatively, many holiday companies operate split destination tours that cover more than one country with a handful of days in each – this could be a great compromise if you can find one that visits the places you both want to go. You could even try solo experiences and excursions that let you spend days apart doing different things, before meeting up for dinner together in the evenings.
Get inspired: Explore multi-destination trips with Trafalgar
Have you travelled solo while you’ve been in a relationship? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below.
Sign up to our newsletter
Sign up to our newsletter and receive $250 of FREE Trafalgar travel credit
" * " indicates required fields
I love to travel. There's practically no place on the planet I'm not curious to see. But even an enthusiastic and laid-back traveler like me still has their quirks. For example, when I'm on vacation, I want to relax. Yes, I also want to see some sights, but I prefer a loose schedule. What that means for me is that I don't vacation well with folks who prefer to wake up super early and follow a carefully crafted itinerary to the letter. Easy answer. However, it gets more complicated when you and your partner don’t travel well together and you have differing vacation philosophies. After all, the point of having a partner is to share in life's adventures with them, right? But if you drive each other bananas any time you attempt a romantic getaway, that can be a real problem.
Is being incompatible travel partners a deal-breaker for the relationship? Or is this a problem with a solution? To figure out how to deal, I reached out to relationship experts, and here's the good news: There is hope in finding a middle ground, but it will take some work. "It’s not an issue to be resolved — it needs to be managed," Anita Chlipala , licensed marriage and family therapist and author of First Comes Us: The Busy Couple's Guide to Lasting Love , tells Elite Daily. "Each partner has their own preferences and values. When they’re at odds, it can seem like a couple is incompatible, but it really comes down to a couple’s ability to understand each other, accept each other, and compromise."
What does this "compromise" actually look like in practice? Here's what the experts say to do if you and your partner don't travel well together.
According to NYC relationship expert and love coach Susan Winter , the first step to becoming better travel companions is to find out in advance what activities are most important to one another on the vacation. “I always ask the following question before a trip: What three things do you need to do to make you feel that you've had a great vacation?” she tells Elite Daily. Then, she says, you make sure to prioritize those things. “In truth, when we're getting our needs met, we're less grumpy with our travel mate. Most of the friction comes from not getting our ‘must-do’ and then feeling resentment and anger,” explains Winter. Often this small adjustment is all you need to become more compatible vacationers.
Once you know what's most important to each of you on vacation, Chlipala suggests keeping things balanced by taking turns selecting the activities. “Alternate. You can honor both of your preferences by alternating trips. It shows your willingness to do the things that are important to your partner, and can make them feel accepted and appreciated,” she says.
Occasionally there will be items on your priorities lists that one or the other of you really have no interest in. In that case, you don’t have to automatically sacrifice one of your must-dos. Instead, Chlipala says plan to spend some time apart. “Do the activity that you want to do — without your partner. If you want to have a day at the beach but they want to go on an excursion, then spend the day separately. You can meet up for dinner and discuss your day,” explains Chlipala.
It really all comes down to recognizing where your travel styles differ and reflecting on those differences while finding middle ground. Just because you aren’t totally on the same page, that doesn’t mean you can't overcome this difference. The key to this, says Chlipala, is to “honor who you are” and who your partner is. “If you prefer to be at the airport two hours ahead of your flight's departure, and your partner prefers to roll up as people are boarding the plane, leave for the airport without them,” she advises. “Waiting around for them could give you anxiety and create a fight, and can start your travel plans off with both of you in a bad mood.”
The fact is that traveling, although exciting, can be stressful, which is why Winter says if you’re not natural travel companions, the key is to try and keep an open mind. “Traveling upsets our normal rhythms of waking, sleeping, eating, and exercise. If your partner likes to be out dancing late into the night and you want to be in bed at 10 p.m., you'll need to creatively think of a day-time schedule that works for both of you,” Winter explains.
There is one more option for couples who struggle to travel well together, says Chlipala, and that's not to force it. “Go on separate vacations,” she suggests. “If your partner loves to ski but you don’t get any enjoyment out of it, they can go with their friends. If you love the beach but your partner feels restless, you can go with friends who also share love of the sand and sun.” After all, there is no rule that you have to take all your vacations together!
The reality is, Chlipala says, that these differences aren't going to magically go away. “A couple needs to figure out how to accept each other and where they can compromise. Each couple needs to discuss why their way of travel is important to them and identify the needs, values and dreams that underlie their preference,” she concludes. If you can do that and then respect and adjust your style of travel to one that addresses both of your needs, you may discover that you really are each other’s perfect travel companion after all.
I Want to Travel but I’m in a Relationship
‘I want to travel but I’m in a relationship’ – ah, what a dilemma. It’s something that I’ve dealt with myself, with my current partner, who is about as opposite to a backpacker as you can be. ‘ I want to travel but my partner doesn’t ,’ I’d say to my friends, hoping that they could somehow magically come up with a solution. But what is the solution if you want to travel but you’re in a relationship? How do you know if you’re making the right decision? I am a member of several Facebook groups about travel, specifically solo female travel . While most of the posts in the groups are about whether a destination is safe or what the best things to do there are, questions that I see time and time again are:
- How do you choose between a relationship and travel?
- What do I do if I want to travel but I’m in a relationship?
- My boyfriend doesn’t want to travel WITH me but ALSO, said boyfriend doesn’t want me to travel WITHOUT him – what do I do?
Usually these posts come from people slightly younger than myself who are finishing up with school and have been yearning to travel for as long as they can remember, but their high school sweetheart (or someone they just started dating) just point blank refuses. And it’s a real dilemma. As someone who grew up dreaming of travel, where my travel dreams bordered on obsession, I totally get how, for some people, travel is a need and not simply a want. I’m also a hopeless romantic, and so I also understand the desire to find that one perfect person who you spend the rest of your life with, and not wanting to end things with somebody in case they are that person and you end up regretting it. So, what do you do? Well, there is no one-size-fits-all answer I’m afraid. Every relationship is different, every set of circumstances are different, and I can’t sit here and make your decisions for you. With that being said, I can give you some possible solutions, compromises, and the kind of advice that I am much more able to give at age 29 then I would have been at 18 or 19.
I Want to Travel but I’m in a Relationship – What Should I Do?
One of the first things to address is whether you travelled before you met your partner, whether you have always dreamed about travel, or whether your wanderlust is a more recent thing. The reason I say this is because I believe that these three scenarios are all very different. For example, I have been travelling for over 4 years. I have not spent longer than a couple of months in my home country since I was a student, and have been what you would call ‘nomadic’ for most of my adult life. When I met my current boyfriend, I was upfront right from the beginning.
I wanted him to know exactly what he was getting into and be aware of the fact that I have no intention of changing my lifestyle anytime soon. I told him that I understood if this was a deal breaker for him but that this is me and he can take it or leave it. The point that I am making is that if you are already travelling and you meet somebody that wants you to stop for them, then you are entitled to politely tell them to F off and not to let the door hit them on the way out. If, however, your travel dreams have always been just that – dreams – then unfortunately you do have to take your partner’s feelings into consideration. It’s only polite after all.
What does travel mean to you?
The first thing you need to do is establish exactly what you mean by ‘travel.’ Do you want to embark on a 3 month backpacking trip around Southeast Asia and then return home to focus on your career? Do you want to move to China for 12 months to teach English ? Do you want to buy a camper van and drive around Europe indefinitely? Do you want to do multiple short trips that will allow you to balance work and travel? Do you want to move to Italy and build a life as an expat? All of these ways of travel are completely different and some of them will definitely have more of an effect on your relationship than others. If you want to embark on one single backpacking trip somewhere, from anywhere between 3 – 6 months, then I don’t see why it has to spell the end of your relationship.
If you are planning to spend your entire life with this person then a few months should not matter. Many, many people take a few months out of their ‘real lives’ to travel while their partner continues on as normal back at home. With the ever-improving technology that we have, long distance relationships are becoming easier and easier, and if your relationship is strong then it should be able to survive a few months apart. If you’re sitting here reading this and thinking ‘ but my boyfriend doesn’t want me to travel without him!’ then I’m sorry to break it to you, but you have bigger issues in your relationship then whether you should go travelling or not. Anyone in a healthy, secure, non-controlling relationship should be able to go and travel for a couple of months without the relationship falling apart. If your partner doesn’t want you to travel without him, I’d wager that this won’t be the last control issue that you’ll have in your relationship.
If you want to do long-term travel then this may post more of a challenge. If, like me, you want to backpack indefinitely and without restrictions, then having a partner who doesn’t want to travel at all will be an issue. If the two of you can’t come to a compromise (you travelling in shorter bursts or him coming with you for some of the time), then it might be time to end things. If you want to actually move to another country and create a life there then your partner has the choice to either come with you, be long distance indefinitely (not what I would recommend), or part ways.
If your idea of travel is going on short city breaks whenever you have the free time, but remaining based in the same city as your partner, then there is no issue at all! If your partner doesn’t want to join you then you can go alone or with friends. If your partner won’t ‘allow’ you to go on travel without him then as I mentioned earlier, you need to get another partner.
Travel vs. relationship – why not have both?
As I have tried to show, you don’t necessarily have to choose between travel and your relationship. Travel and relationships are not mutually exclusive things. You can have both. It’s a hell of a cliché, but relationships really are about compromise, and if you partner is the one for you then they will be more than happy to discuss the ways in which you can still achieve your dreams without turning your back on the relationship. It might not be an ideal situation, but ultimately you should be able to come to an agreement whereby both of you are happy. If your partner is the one for you then you will manage to make it work.
This may mean long distance. It may mean being flexible. It may mean you staying put a little longer than you’d like, and your partner travelling a little more often than they would like. But somehow it will work. Alternatively, perhaps you are the right people who met at the wrong time. There is nothing wrong with putting the relationship on hold for a little while and then coming back to each other in the future to try and make it work. Maybe too much time has passed and you no longer feel a connection, or maybe you will be able to be together fully with nobody having to adjust their life to make the other happy. If your partner is not supportive of your dreams at all, or even gives you an ultimatum and asks you to choose between travel and the relationship, is that really someone that you want to be with? I would say no.
Hell, if your partner sees themselves living a completely different lifestyle to you, is it not better to end things now? From my experience, travellers (and people that want to travel) have similar traits. People who don’t like to travel also have similar traits. While they like comfort and routine, you like adventure and unpredictability. While they like security, you like the unknown. While they prioritise their career, you prioritise travel. While they may be more financially motivated, you are all about creating memories. None of the qualities that I have just mentioned are bad. In fact, you could definitely argue that the qualities a person without wanderlust has are ‘better’ than those that an avid traveller has!
However, while differences in a relationship are a given, if you are fundamentally different in so many ways, then perhaps you are not meant to be in the long run. Perhaps the person for you is currently camping in the Sahara desert or teaching people to dive in Malaysia . Perhaps the person for your partner is actually in an office right now, or curled up on the sofa with a takeaway and a good Netflix series. There are more than 7 billion people on the planet . There is a good chance that there is somebody out there whose lifestyle is more compatible with yours who is just waiting for you to find them and fall in love with them.
How my boyfriend and I worked it out
When I met my boyfriend, he was working an office job in Manchester and I was visiting home from where I’d been living in Sicily . I told him, upfront, that I would not stop travelling for anyone, and so, after a few months together during lockdown in rainy Manchester, he said that he would give Sicily a go. We went there, but he hated it more or less right away. Palermo is not for everyone, and I understand that. We then spent about 6 weeks backpacking, but he wasn’t keen on that either. I won’t lie, I worried a LOT about what this would mean for our relationship. However, we eventually reached a compromise. He wanted to base ourselves somewhere for at least a year, and I agreed, but said that wherever we were had to be outside of the UK, and with great weather. Enter, Valencia .
We are now 7 months into our 12 month lease and we are both super happy here in Spain. He feels better having a base, and now that restrictions are loosening, he is enjoying flying back home frequently to see his family and work in the office from time to time. We’ve spoken about what happens if I want to go travelling, and he said that if I wanted to go off travelling for a month at a time, it’s fine by him (as long as I still pay my share of the rent!). We’ve also talked about weekend trips and short city breaks that we can do together. It might not be the usual way of doing things (he is currently in Ireland for a month working, and I am here alone), but it works for us, and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters. I’m compromising by having a base and giving up my nomadic lifestyle, and he’s compromising by settling down in a place that he never imagined he would. It works.
If you DO have to choose, choose travel
With all that being said, I know that for some couples, a compromise just can’t be reached. I am a travel addict. I know that wanderlust is a hunger that will grow and grow until you feed it. I know that your yearning for travel will not cease to exist if you try and repress it. It will do the opposite. It will get to the point where you look at your partner with resentment. You will blame them for you deciding not to travel and become bitter about your life together. You will feel as though you are a character in their life rather than the protagonist of your own. And that’s if you stay together.
What if you break up after a few years and you now have commitments that don’t allow you to travel? You have a car, a pet and a mortgage. You can’t just up and leave like you could have done 10 years ago when you initially wanted to travel. You will have to live with the regret of having not travelled when you were as free as a bird, when life wasn’t so complicated. Unfortunately, the odds of you and your partner staying together forever are slim. This isn’t me being a pessimist – I meant it when I said I’m a hopeless romantic – this is me being real with you. While you might think that you and Brad from college are soulmates, you probably aren’t.
I thought my college boyfriend was my soulmate. We were crazy about each other and I couldn’t imagine my life without him. He told me that he felt the same and that we would get married and grow old together. Needless to say, I was single before I turned 19 and my GOD am I thankful for that. Mr College Boyfriend was not the one for me, and I would have missed out on SO much life experience if I’d stayed with him. I wouldn’t have lived on a beach in Cambodia or backpacked through the Balkans. I wouldn’t have worked in hostels and met some of my best friends in the world. I wouldn’t have had travel romances that have been exciting and magical and fun.
“But won’t I be single forever if I travel?”
I think one of the main reasons people are afraid to travel is that they fear being single. They worry that a life on the road will prevent them from creating and maintaining fulfilling relationships and figure that staying with their current partner and missing out on travel is better than being perpetually single. First of all, F. THAT. Being single is the BEST. Everybody should be single for a prolonged period at some point in their life. Being single and travelling is even better. You can choose where to go, how long to spend there, what to do when you’re there and if you want to kiss a cute boy on a pub crawl then you can bloody well do so.
You don’t have to rush back to the hostel to call your boyfriend before he goes to bed, or fight about that dude that tagged you in an Instagram picture. You can be truly selfish in the best possible way, and trust me when I say that your heartbreak over Brad will disappear quicker than a bottle of Bintang on Khao San Road. That being said, travel doesn’t prevent you from finding love. I would go so far as to say that you are more likely to find somebody compatible with you when you’re travelling verses when you’re not. First of all, they are living the same lifestyle as you, so that’s a start. Second, travel romances are so pure and beautiful. You know the butterflies and excitement that you used to get in high school before ghosting and mind games and situationships took over?
Welcome to the world of travel romance. I know plenty of people who have fallen in love and formed successful relationships on the road. My best friend met a guy travelling and dated him for 3 years . I know people in Cambodia that met while backpacking and proceeded to open businesses, get married and have babies together (while still travelling!). I know other couples that embrace ‘van life’ culture and see the entire world together. Travelling does not mean singledom. Travelling has never affected my romantic relationships. Romances that have fizzled due to distance are romances that were never going to work anyway. Travel just helped me find that out quicker.
I Want to Travel but I’m in a Relationship | Final thoughts
Ultimately, I can’t tell you what to do. I’m just a stranger on the internet who is incredibly biased towards travel. That said, I think the fact that you are thinking about this in the first place answers your question – if this person was truly the one for you, it would be a non-issue. You would either forget about travelling entirely because you’ve found something that matters more to you, or you would make it work. If you are already trying to decide between travel and your relationship, then unfortunately I think that says it all. What do you think? Do you agree with me or do you think that saving the relationship is more important? Please let me know your thoughts in the comments below! xoxo
If you liked this article and would like to support my work, please click the button above to donate a couple of bucks and buy me a coffee. The ad revenue that I receive on this website is minimal, so support from my readers enables me to keep creating content that you (hopefully!) love to read.
Disclaimer – Travelling Jezebel uses affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase on a recommended site then I may make a small commission at no extra cost to you.
6 thoughts on “i want to travel but i’m in a relationship”.
This is exactly what I needed (and wanted) to hear, thank you for the inspiration I needed to pursue my dreams! Great blog.
This makes me so happy! 🙂
Love this blog!
I think my boyfriend would be up for travelling though thank god but even then if he didn’t this blog was quite inspiring ! I would be away and he wouldn’t have a say! Deffo you should always do what you want to do in life! It is yours for the taking! xD
I really want to travel after I graduate but I’ve always wondered about career stability/ finances if I was to take a year out though I shouldn’t let this hold me back! I would then just be worried if my boyfriend couldn’t afford it but wanted to come travelling. then I would have to decide whether to go without him which would be mean or have patience till he can pay or I could help him pay! Or maybe working holiday visas would be the way to go in this situation. 🙂
Ever heard of a situation like this?
Can’t wait to spend my first proper wages on travelling when I can!
Thanks so much!
I don’t think that you should be worried that taking a year out would impact your career too much. If anything, jobs LOVE knowing that you have travelled, especially if you have done bits of volunteer work along the way or have other cool stories to tell about skills that you’ve picked up (like sailing around Europe or helping out an an elephant sanctuary or taking a cooking class in Italy!).
As for your boyfriend and his finances, I personally wouldn’t advise that you help him out, unless you’ve been together for years and years and you KNOW that he could (and would!) pay you back. Even then, I wouldn’t advise it. If he really wanted to go but needed a few extra months to save up, then wait for him for sure 🙂 if he doesn’t take saving up the money seriously and you end up waiting longer and longer – screw it, go without him! If your relationship is strong enough then a few months apart won’t be the be all and end all, and maybe he could even meet you out there after a couple of months! Volunteering in exchange for bed and board is also a great option – I have a long article all about working in hostels which you might find interesting!
Working holiday visas are also a great idea, so many people have that experience in Australia and love it 🙂
Hi Jez, I know I’m the wrong age group for this blog, but I’ve been that person who grew up traveling (around the world twice by age 10, in 1967, when this was not done), was bitten by the bug, and wanted it for the rest of my life. I only did small spurts because I couldn’t manage my own life until after college. 3 weeks in Ecuador at 15, 8 weeks in Greece at 22, then trying to figure things out with grad school and early jobs. I married my husband chiefly because I thought he was a good traveler. He was in Russia for a semester when we were first engaged, met me in Italy when I had a Fulbright for a summer. But ultimately, he wasn’t a good traveler for me. Now I’m planning retirement; my kids are grown. [I’ve helped them become brilliant travelers, by the way!] I figure I will rent my house out and go. As a 65-year-old woman alone, I want to do the “harder” trips now, and the easier trips (Europe again) when I’m old. I am a little worried about being a woman alone, but I’ve never had problems I couldn’t handle. At least not yet.
Amazing! I’m sure you have so many wonderful adventures to come!
Leave a Comment Cancel Reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .
When Your Partner Does Not Want to Travel
Rewind 10 years ago and I was a single 25-year-old freshly off finishing grad school at NYU who was moving to start a new chapter and a new job in Austin. I loved snowboarding, my friends, my dogs, and of course, travel. I shortly thereafter met Josh (he was actually my roommate!) and we started dating. Well, it didn't take long before I had another trip coming up, and that presented a challenge.
We were in that stage of "dating" where we wanted to do everything together, only he didn't fly and didn't really enjoy travel. He had experienced previous panic attacks on flights, hated the "cattle type" travel experience, and at 6'2+ was uncomfortable in the tiny airplane seats. Since we both wanted to go on the trip together, he did his best to be brave, and I did my best to make the trip, and especially the flight, bearable for him.
We had a great time on that trip and that slowly led to more trips. However, once we got a little past the we.have.to.do.everything.together stage, travel became a bit more of a negotiation. He was not, and will not, ever be a natural-born nomad. He would usually prefer to be at home, or out on some land cutting things down, or on a lake fishing, or several other activities, rather than standing in line to board a flight.
However, we usually had fun on trips once we got there, so there was incentive to find a way to make it all work for both of us - which got even more challenging as kids started to be added to the crew. I know this difference in travel patterns/habits/desires is something that other traveling couples face, so I was more than happy to recently chat about how we overcame (or, really found a way to manage) this difference for an article by Scott McCartney in The Middle Seat column of The Wall Street Journal.
I encourage you to read the article if you can since there are some fun stories and tips from some of my other favorite traveling couples including Pizza in Motion , but here are my three top tips I share to those who want to get a travel reluctant spouse on board. Pardon the pun...
Go Where They Want to Go
One way I really got Josh on #teamtravel was to design many of the trips, especially at first, around what he wanted to do, even if it wasn't my first choice. I wanted him to have ample motivation to get beyond the parts of the travel process he really dreaded so he would see those parts really don't have to be that bad, and that the payoff is worth it.
This meant trips to see his beloved Kansas City Chiefs, a factory in Tennessee where they make boats, and planning our first major international trip to the place he had always wanted to go, Ireland. Okay, one t hat wasn't much of a sacrifice!
I wanted to make the entire travel process as comfortable as possible so he would keep wanting more, and that meant upgraded seats when possible, nicer rooms and suites, fancier rental cars, etc. Sometimes this required more miles or money, but since the alternative was a partner who didn't really want to leave our home zip code, it was well worth it.
The only downside to this approach is that they may come to expect "five star" treatment on every trip, even when it isn't really feasible or possible.
Know When to Divide and Conquer
While traveling with those you love is often better than hopping around the world alone, this doesn't mean your partner who has different travel desires has to come with you on every trip. In fact, it is probably better if they don't. We eventually developed a pretty good pattern of when to travel together, and when to give him a few days of fishing, making bonfires, etc. at home while I logged some miles in the sky solo, with friends, or with my Little C.
This did get a little trickier with young kids in the house, but once Little C was about 3.5 she was old enough to travel just with me and have it actually still be fun, or stay behind without being too much work for just one parent at home. We aren't there again yet with Baby S, but within a few years we will again more easily be able to divide the trips with the kiddos sometimes heading on an adventure with mom or staying at home to chill with dad.
Until then I'm thankful we have found a way to make travel work even though we will always have somewhat different travel styles and preferences!
My partner secretly bought a house, then said he didn't love me. my next step was a surprise.
It was October 2020, and my partner and I were fortunate to be on remote teams that had weathered the initial COVID fallout. Seven months of working in close quarters was taking its toll, but we were talking about long-term plans and shopping for a house together. Despite the pandemic setbacks, everything was going my way.
After 10 years as a copywriter, I was toying with the idea of leaving my job to build my own practice as a business coach. I was anxious about it ― so anxious that i t took me the better part of four months to work up the courage to turn in my notice. Six days after that, my partner said the words that turned my world upside down.
“There’s no easy way to say this, but I don’t love you the way you love me.”
It came as a complete surprise, especially when he told me he’d secretly bought our house on his own, behind my back. He’d later assure me he felt doubly bad, buying the one he knew I really wanted.
The next day he was packing his stuff and moving out. I’d gone from having a great job, a loving partner and a solid plan for the future to no job, no partner, no house and no idea what to do next.
The next few days are a blur. According to him, the easiest solution was for me to take over the lease to our townhouse after he moved out, but something about that suggestion made me furious. He had it all planned out a little too neatly for me to believe it hadn’t been on his mind for longer than he let on.
I instantly knew I was not going to continue living in what had been our place. But where to go? Unfortunately I hated every option I had; something in me rebelled against the idea of being stuck with the choices he left me.
In the depths of my grief, I remembered that I’d always wanted to travel. Yet every time I got into a serious relationship, my partner didn’t like to travel or couldn’t get time off work to do so. Back then, I was nervous about the idea of going solo, so I never did. That left me feeling like there were a lot of places I would never see… at least not as long as I was waiting around for someone to go with me.
So I did something neither of us expected … I created a new option for myself.
With no real plan aside from getting the hell out of Dodge, I sold my furniture, gave away most of my possessions and resolved to spend the next year or two exploring the country in search of a place that felt like home. I had an idea of all the places I wanted to visit in the back of my mind and knew exactly where to start.
I booked a place in New Orleans for six weeks ― that felt like enough time to settle in and see a variety of things and get to know the neighborhood while still being able to work on my coaching business. Then I packed my cat Stella into my Kia Soul and hit the road for one of the most transformative experiences of my life.
When I arrived in New Orleans, I had no idea what to do. I quickly fell into a routine; during the day I would work on freelance and consulting projects, and at night I would become one with the couch, ordering in and comfort-binging happy movies on Netflix.
Eventually I got frustrated. What’s the point of traveling to a new city if you’re just going to live on someone else’s couch?
I started researching sights to see and restaurants to try, an effort that was made even more challenging with COVID capacity restrictions and mask mandates. Did I mention I started this pre-vaccine? In fact, I’d booked my place in New Orleans smack-dab in the middle of Mardi Gras, but the parades were all canceled that year.
One random Wednesday evening, I threw caution to the wind and visited a restaurant called La Petite Grocery on Magazine Street, where I had one of the best meals of my entire life. By the end of the meal, I felt a lot more human. On a whim, I asked my server where to go next.
That’s how I stumbled onto my favorite way to travel and explore ― talking to an enthusiastic local (or someone who loves the town you’re visiting) and getting their top picks for what to see. When you get to the next place, rinse and repeat.
In New Orleans, I decided I wanted to see cities known for music and the arts. As I got close to the end of my six weeks in NOLA, I booked the next six-week stay in Memphis, Tennessee.
That became my method ― shortly after arriving in a city, I’d pull up a map and see what was within a four- to six-hour drive (to limit Stella’s time in the car). From Memphis, I spent six weeks in Nashville, then Asheville, North Carolina. Then I headed south to Atlanta and Savannah, and rounded out my first year on the road in Florida.
In Memphis, I saw the daily march of the famous Peabody ducks and took an order of Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken to Mud Island to see a scale model of the Mississippi River. In Asheville, I lost time sitting at the base of High Falls, marveling at the tranquility of a place where the water roars. In Atlanta, I did llama yoga (as much yoga as one can realistically do with a llama in your space).
Eventually I stopped doing any research at all on the places I was visiting, opting to spend that effort on finding a good Airbnb to use as a base and wing it once I arrived. With a planning committee of strangers and an attitude of “Let’s see what happens,” I threw myself into going with the flow.
When I hit the road, I was afraid it would be lonely and scary, especially while dealing with breakup grief. But a surprising thing happened: The deep loneliness I’d been secretly scared would follow me from place to place never actually showed up. It turned out to be one of the most lovely, enlightening, connecting-on-a-human level experiences of my life ― and it gave me a lot of hope in a time when everything felt pretty hopeless.
Often friends would reach out and ask if I knew a particular person in the city I was visiting. Whether or not I did, I’d ask for an intro and invite them to meet up for coffee or join me on one of my adventures. Even when I knew no one, I’d hang out with my Airbnb host or with locals I met along the way. I remember one night in Flagstaff, Arizona, at a place called Fat Olives, when those of us at the bar passed around our pizzas so everyone could try a different slice.
I also came to treasure my alone time, something I never expected since I hadn’t really lived by myself before. Up until my mid-30s, I’d always had a mix of family, romantic partners or roommates. Before I met my ex, I’d lived in my own place for nine months, but I was either working around the clock or deliberately making plans outside the house ― anything to avoid being alone with my thoughts.
If you went back in time and told Angie from 2020 that she’d be single and traveling solo around the United States, I’m sure she’d look at you like you had lost your mind. That Angie knew where she was going and had the whole path mapped out, including a loving partner and the cute house in the suburbs.
Now I’ve spent the last three years living on the road and visiting all the places in the United States that I could never convince past partners to go see.
As talking to complete strangers has become part of my travel routine, I’ve noticed the conversations go surprisingly deep very quickly. Most often, I’d get asked why I decided to become a digital nomad. I usually share a brief synopsis of the breakup and how it led to my choice to travel, and they usually share their own story of grief and recovery. More than once, someone has told me, “I wish I could travel like you.”
I can’t say I’m glad I got dumped, but I’ve learned that there is transformation in devastation. Traveling has taught me so much about myself and about the world, lessons I never would have learned if my plan for myself hadn’t fallen apart. Looking back, it was the best thing that could have happened to me.
Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on HuffPost? Find out what we’re looking for here and send us a pitch .
At huffpost, it's personal.
At HuffPost, we believe that everyone needs high-quality journalism, but we understand that not everyone can afford to pay for expensive news subscriptions. That is why we are committed to providing deeply reported, carefully fact-checked news that is freely accessible to everyone.
Our News, Politics and Culture teams invest time and care working on hard-hitting investigations and researched analyses, along with quick but robust daily takes. Our Life, Health and Shopping desks provide you with well-researched, expert-vetted information you need to live your best life, while HuffPost Personal, Voices and Opinion center real stories from real people.
Help keep news free for everyone by giving us as little as $1. Your contribution will go a long way.
Personal stories can change the way we see the world, each other, and ourselves. Authentic, first-person accounts can change your life. Everyone should have the opportunity to experience the transformative power of real people telling real stories about their real lives, which is why we're determined to keep HuffPost Personal — and every other part of HuffPost — 100% free.
Help us continue to share these lived experiences by contributing as little as $1.
Personal stories can change the way we see the world, understand each other, and know ourselves. Authentic, first-person accounts can change your life. At HuffPost, our editors put thought, care, and intention behind every story and writer we platform. Because a personal story is never just about a story, it is also about a person. Everyone should have the opportunity to experience the transformative power of real people telling real stories about their real lives, which is why we're determined to keep HuffPost Personal — and every other part of HuffPost — 100% free.
You won't find the stories from HuffPost Personal anywhere else. Help us continue to share these lived experiences by contributing as little as $1.
Do you have info to share with HuffPost reporters? Here’s how.
Popular in the Community
From our partner, more in huffpost personal.
Everything about tourist attractions
How to convince your partner, husband or wife to travel with you
Edited by: Rekha Rajan Fact checked by: Jamshed V Rajan
How will it be if your partner, husband or wife denies an awesome trip because he or she doesn’t like traveling?
It will be heartbreaking for sure if you have to miss your much-desired holiday because of this, right?
We won’t suggest you change your life partner. To be honest, to choose a vacation or a holiday above your boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse is stupidity. Well, almost 🙂
To persuade someone to start traveling, continue reading –
Allow us to give you some effective ideas on how to convince your partner, husband or wife to travel with you on a holiday.
The duration of the travel – long or short doesn’t matter once they agree to travel with you.
Once you read these tips, head straight out to Tripadvisor or AirBnB or Expedia to book your holiday.
1. Talk About Each Other’s Interests
You must talk to your partner, husband or wife about their interests. These inputs will help you decide which holiday to suggest.
You should also place your traveling dreams before him or her. I am sure your partner wouldn’t mind helping you realize your dream vacations since they love you.
Without knowing about his or her interests you stand no chance of convincing your spouse or partner to travel with you.
2. Stretch His or Her Comfort Zone
Help your partner understand that traveling will change his or her mental status.
Let your partner know how relaxing and peaceful traveling is.
You need to convince him or her that travel is the only thing that makes us richer even if we have spent money on it.
Now, what is the one sure shot way of persuading them to travel with you?
The trick is to ensure that the holiday is an extension of their comfort zone.
If they are comfortable with something location or surrounds, identify a holiday in similar settings.
For example, if your partner lived in a city with a beach, suggest a beach holiday.
3. Make Them Aware Of Cheap and Best Holiday Packages
The only way of finding out why your partner doesn’t want to travel is by talking about travel a lot.
Sometimes it may be as simple as the cost, which your partner may find prohibitive.
But he or she may never say so in open for fear of being judged.
This happens often when you aren’t married.
At this stage the financial status is still hidden, often.
If you think your partner is worried about the finances, speak to them.
Explore travel desires that won’t burn a hole in the pocket.
Show your spouse traveling options with discounts and offers on tour packages.
If cost is the reason, you both need to discuss it in open.
Only then you will have any chance of prevailing over your partner and convincing him or her to go on a holiday.
For cheap holiday packages check out Expedia , Thomas Cook , Last Minute , Cox and Kings etc.
4. Talk Of Friends’ Recent Vacations
Many people need an outside stimulus to wake up the sleeping interest inside them of them.
Facebook news feeds of your friends’ vacations can act as great stimuli. You can talk to your husband or wife about friends who are back from a successful vacation. This, if used well, can be a great way to convince your spouse to start traveling.
Are you a bit reluctant to show your friends’ travel photos on Facebook to your spouse? Then, there is one workaround. You can comment on your friends’ travel updates as a habit. And your partner will start getting them in their news feeds. That must do something, right?
Additional Reading: Persuade your partner
5. Take Your Spouse On A Romantic Date
It doesn’t matter where you are going to travel with, it’s who you are traveling with that’s important.
A romantic date at an exotic, well-decorated restaurant will generate new vibe in your spouse’s inner self.
And, they will love the idea of spending more time with you.
Drop a hint during the date and leave the rest to your partner.
For all you know, he or she may decide to start traveling and plan the whole vacation for you.
Make this romantic date a teaser to a lovely vacation.
6. Let An Image Tell a Story
As I said earlier, one needs an external stimulus to wake up the sleeping traveler within.
Even if your partner isn’t keen on traveling, you can go all out and search for images of exotic places.
That too, while sitting right next to him or her. This act will be like the devil trying to tempt the sinner.
Be ready to beg, borrow, steal to brainwash your partner to start traveling with you.
You can even pick up brochures of holiday packages.
Collect them from travel agents and show it to your husband, wife or partner.
This is bound to make them curious and excited.
7. Be Willing To Plan Everything
Chances are your husband or wife or boyfriend or girlfriend just isn’t into planning. This may be the reason he/she hates traveling.
This is where you take charge and assure them that you will handle everything.
Let them know that you will take care of all the travel planning involved for the vacation.
This may be the single most important thing you can do to convince your spouse to start traveling with you.
Recommended Reading 1. Avoid getting robbed while traveling overseas 2. Save money while traveling
8. Mitigate Your Partner’s Fears
Does your spouse have a fear of height, water or any other such fear?
You need to find this out and mitigate them before you even speak to them about travel.
For instance, if he or she fears water a beach holiday may not be a good idea.
Or if your husband or wife has a fear of heights, traveling to a hill station doesn’t make sense.
9. Let The First Travel Together Be To His Place
There will be lots of memories attached to one’s birthplace place because of all the time spent.
Plan a trip to the city he or she grew up in and re-kindle all his or her memories.
Even if it won’t be an exciting trip for you, you may open the travel bug in your partner.
A comfortable vacation to a familiar place will do the trick for you in this case.
This is an excellent travel suggestion.
This can almost always help you convince your partner for future travels together.
10. Start With Short Intra-City Trips
Start slow by traveling a bit within the city.
Adventure travel or spiritual opportunities within the city which can act like ice-breakers.
I recommend intra-city adventure or spiritual travel as these are the ones with the greatest pull. Such trips can help your spouse say: ‘Why don’t we do it more often.”
11. Plan a Few Staycations
If your partner or spouse isn’t agreeing to the adventure or spiritual intra-city traveling, recommend a staycation.
A Staycation is where you decide to walk into a nice hotel in your city itself and spend a few days. No traveling at all!
It’s just not being at home. Simple. This is something your husband or wife can never refuse.
12. Plan Short Breaks On Weekends
Once you have done a few intra-city trips or staycations, you can start with weekend breaks.
If you notice, we all become tired by end of the week. That’s a great time to suggest doing nothing over the weekend.
You can plan a small trip with your partner to give him or her a much-needed break.
It would bring back the lost charm in the relationship as well.
He or she will spend time in a different world – far from their work life.
If you are lucky after a weekend break, your spouse will get convinced to start traveling with you often, and further.
13. Plan A Step-By-Step Vacation
Once you had a 2-day weekend trip, you can extend that to a week.
Then, you can try a two week or a month or two long holiday.
If everything goes well, you may move to another country for six months.
Update: From our readers, we have understood that it is almost always the husband who is not willing to travel with the wife.
And almost always it is the wife who ends up searching for information on “how to convince my husband to start traveling with me.”
Well, let us assure you ladies, our suggestions mentioned above can do wonders.
Do leave a comment or share our tips with your friends if they have helped you.
Recommended Reading 1. Travel tips for first time travelers 2. Ten best travel movies for inspiration 3. Places to travel solo in Asia 4. How to save money to travel the world
How useful was this post?
Click on a star to rate it!
This article was researched & written by
Yashika travels to write. From capturing the endless sea from the coast of Thailand to walking barefoot on the sands of Sahara, the experience is everything to her, and she captures the experience in her words. For her, a good vacation includes the right amount of activity and rest. Favorite Cities: Istanbul, Hanoi, Cape Town, Singapore
FireStorm Internet runs this website to provide the most accurate and up-to-day information about tourist attractions.
FireStorm Internet, 203, 30C, Bollineni Hillside, Perumbakkam Main Road, Nookampalayam, Chennai, India. Pin Code: 600126
Helicopter Tours Food Tours Ghost Tours Stadium Tours Hop On Hop Off Tours Zoo Tickets Madame Tussauds Linq High Roller Summit One Vanderbilt
© 2023 FireStorm Internet
- Main content
I live in a van for half the year while my partner stays home. Here are 5 ways we make our relationship work.
- I'm a solo van-lifer for about half of every year, but my partner doesn't join me on my adventures.
- To make our long-distance relationship work, we make sure to cut each other slack.
- We try to do the same activities at the same time so we can chat about those experiences later.
I've been independent my whole life — I once found the book "Parenting Your Strong-Willed Child" on my mom's bedside table — and I have no problem traveling the world by myself.
Those traits make me an ideal solo van-lifer , and I try to go off adventuring as often as I can.
But when I'm not living by myself in a van, I share a house with my partner and two dogs, and my partner doesn't like to travel or camp at all.
Read on for some of the ways we make bouts of long-distance work.
We find interesting ways to communicate and share experiences
I'm not a big texter, which isn't the best trait when I have a partner who's very communicative.
When I'm away, my partner and I rely on something we used to do back when we were long-distance full-time: We do the same activities at the same time, no matter where we are in the world.
I can be under a sleeping bag in the foothills of the mountains in Utah and my partner can be on our couch with our pups, and we can still watch a movie "together" and discuss it afterward.
It keeps our conversations from being exclusively about boring aspects of day-to-day life — errands we've run, traffic jams, etc.
It's important that we remember to cut each other slack
Say it's 10 p.m. and you're exhausted and just want a little bit of familiarity. You pick up the phone and wait to hear your partner's voice, only to reach voicemail.
This can be frustrating and disheartening, especially if I'm feeling homesick, and it's easy to let distance and time apart fester into conflict.
When I'm traveling, I remind myself that my partner has as much going on as I do and that missing a call or text isn't a big deal.
Giving each other the benefit of the doubt every time and realizing that nobody should be glued to their phones helps keep that anxiety at bay.
I allow myself to make connections with other people and dive into new experiences
When I'm traveling solo for long stretches of time, it's easy to let my partner become my primary point of human contact. But my journey in the van is about experiencing what I can't do at home.
It's about finding rapport with people from entirely different walks of life and learning self-reliance.
While I'm on the road, it's important for me to remember that my partner is someone I can share thoughts and ideas with, but not the only person. And they're also not my only source of joy.
I can't resent my partner for their preferences and vice versa
Not everyone is alike, and that's a good thing.
It's tempting for me to imagine my partner on the road with me and resent having to do things solo, but I know that independence like this is rare for many couples. I get to be with someone I love while getting to do my favorite things.
I enjoy sitting by a campfire at night for hours and bathing in a nearby creek, but those aren't things my partner likes. Accepting those differences has greatly enriched our relationship and our understanding of each other's needs.
We prioritize quality time together when we're in the same place
When I get home after a long time on the road, I miss it immensely. Even when I'm excited to be back with my partner, it can be jarring to go back to "real life."
We make sure that when we're together, it's not just idle time. Instead, we do things I rarely do when I'm traveling, like dining out and going to the movies .
These shared experiences ease me back into living at home and give us something to be excited about.
Ask Kate: I Want to Travel But My Boyfriend Doesn’t
Adventurous Kate contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I will earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks!
This week’s question is about relationships and how they fit into the context of long-term travel.
I thought I might just pop through a question. I’m currently in a relationship and have been for over a year, but my heart is set on long term travel at the end of this year. I am definitely going to go- i’m not sure if he will come too though. I have mentioned it before, but I don’t want to push it. Only problem is that I feel very selfish for doing this. What would you do in this situation?
I think you already know the answer to this.
Most long-term travelers I know spent years dreaming, planning, and saving money before actually taking the plunge and leaving on their travels. If your boyfriend isn’t doing any of those things now, less than a year before your departure date, when is he going to?
The fact that you’ve barely even discussed this with your boyfriend is pretty telling.
So that answers that question. But is your relationship salvageable?
Keeping up a relationship when one partner is traveling long-term is an extremely difficult thing to do. I would only recommend doing so if you have an exceptionally strong relationship, have phenomenal communication skills, and are planning a future together.
If you have a relationship like that, then by all means, go for it. But if you’re not quite there, staying together will cause more pain in the long run.
My message to you: It is better to have a peaceful, amicable breakup now than a messy, drawn-out breakup while you’re thousands of miles apart.
Please don’t feel guilty — you’re not selfish. You’re not married. You don’t have kids. Though things might be difficult in the beginning, everyone will heal from this. You owe it to yourself to go after your dreams. You don’t want to be on your deathbed thinking about the dream trip that slipped out from beneath your fingers.
I have the feeling that you wrote to me because part of you is ready to end your relationship with your boyfriend. I give you permission. Let this be your blessing.
Wishing you all the best of luck in whatever you decide to do.
Want Kate to answer your travel question? Email kate [at] adventurouskate [dot] com and perhaps yours will be answered next week!
68 thoughts on “Ask Kate: I Want to Travel But My Boyfriend Doesn’t”
I just wrote a similar post the other day, but regarding short term trips! I am always surprised at the number of my friends who won’t travel because their boyfriend can’t (read: won’t). Some of my best trips have been with friends, and if I didn’t have them I would most certainly go alone!
Go without him if he doesn’t want to go. His problem. You will regret it if you don’t go the rest of your life!!!
Hm, I can relate to this, but also for short term travel. I want to see the world and I want to see it now, but Boyfriend has other priorities. He loves snowboarding, it’s his passion. Who am I to say he should drop those vacations to go abroad with me? Small difference: we’ve been together for more than six years and live together. We’re to compeltely different people with completely different passions, but strangely enough, we really complement each other…
I couldn’t agree more with this post! I was on the verge of my first Eurotrip the summer after my first year of college and after telling my then boyfriend ‘I’m going to Europe!’…he basically said ‘…well when are you coming back?’ and that’s all he said. If he wasn’t excited for me and my dreams, then why the hell would I want to be with someone like that who doesn’t encourage me to go for a life-changing experience. So we broke up, I went to Europe, had the TIME OF MY LIFE, went back again the next summer, studied abroad, moved to Amsterdam where I’ve been living for the past 4 years and am now engaged to a European who fully embraces travel and adventure. I think some people don’t want to let go of a significant other because they are afraid, don’t want to hurt the other person or are too comfortable. Fair enough! I felt terrible when I dumped that guy before I went to Europe but as a then 19 year old, I didn’t want to have regrets based on the other people…I wanted to be completely responsible for my own choices and paving my own life. I didn’t want my decisions to be based on another person, especially like you say during a time when we don’t have kids, we’re not married and that these years in our 20’s really shape who we are. It’s about stepping out of your comfort zone and that comfort zone might be stepping away from your significant other, no matter how much it hurts now. I’ve seen countless people do the same and ALL of them came out way better in the end.
Great post Kate.
Rachael, I’m so happy it’s worked out so well for you! Congratulations on your engagement.
I left a relationship over a year ago knowing that I had plans to travel and he didn’t have the desire nor the financial means to come with me. I’ve always planned to travel solo. As for my current relationship status, I’ve been with someone new for 6 months. Before we even started dating I told him point blank, I’m travelling at the end of 2013, with or without you. I’ve been saving for over 2 years and nothing is stopping me from leaving.
Within a month of us dating, he started putting away $1200 into savings to come with me. Now we plan to travel as a couple. I know that travelling could make or break us and it’s going to be an incredible test of our relationship. However, I know this going into it and am willing to accept it if it happens.
That is amazing, Robyn. So happy for you.
Great post and (I think) good answers to what can be a really tough and painful situation. It’s really hard to make these choices sometimes, but I think a lot of people let their unwilling or unable partner be their excuse, as it were, not to spread their wings.
I feel really lucky that I happen to be dating a guy who a) values travel and travels a lot himself (we’ve traveled a lot together and it has really strengthened our relationship) and b) was the one who encouraged me to quit my job to travel all this year after vaguely toying with the idea, even though it meant having to do long-distance for awhile. Having someone support you and your dreams is so important, regardless of whether it’s in the same city or across oceans.
I definitely agree with you, Kate, that it is incredibly challenging and requires a lot of commitment from both parties. And to be really honest, I’m glad I was single the first few times I traveled abroad! I had a blast! 😉
Sara, I’m really glad that it worked out in the best way possible for you. Sounds like you’ve got a great guy!
Interesting read and equally interesting comments. Out of curiosity, I raise this question: I’ve seen plenty of blog posts from male authors (I’m sure you guys have too) proclaiming ‘similar’ ideas. The desire to hit the road without a partner or a steady back home. Many a time the comments to these blogs drag the author over the coals for his desire to ‘sleep his way around Europe…’ Or so it’s perceived. Do the same rules apply to male and female travelers? I’m not sure, what do you guys think?
Yes, girls get slut shamed extra.
There are double standards of all sorts applied to both sexes.
This is such a tricky question because I don’t think anyone will take the advice unless they are absolutely ready to, but I also believe it’s 90% of the time the best answer. I had to break up with my (long long longterm) boyfriend to go study abroad b/c he didn’t support it, and it was the best decision I ever made. I lost a boy and gained the whole world. Generally, I think that if you really want to travel long term and your boyfriend isn’t into it, you probably have different life priorities, at least for right now. Break up, go on your trip, then see how things stand when you get back.
So glad that you broke away when you did!
My friends were in a similar situation — she was set on studying in Greece, he wasn’t really into the idea. But he followed her, and now they’re married. 🙂 (They also have one of my favorite stories of all time — he was drunk in Athens and got into what he thought was a cab and told the driver to take him to the sandwich place. It was actually a cop car. They were amused and took him.)
On the other hand, travel was not something that interested my boyfriend before he met me. But when we had been together three years, he came with me all the way around the world. We’re getting married in May.
In the end, he chose me and my goals over his own. At first he was reluctant–he has a career that he loves, he has a home that he loves, and he was *scared* to travel and live elsewhere. If it’s fear holding back your own boyfriend, he may get over it. I showed my partner beautiful pictures, we watched travel movies and documentaries, and we read blog posts of people who had done it before. Now we’re planning our honeymoon in Cuba!
That being said, if he doesn’t come, I agree that keeping up long distance might not be worth it over longterm travel. It’s better to be free!
I almost broke up with my then girlfriend (now wife and world travel partner) while we were on an extended road trip through Canada. Since then, I’ve always believed that the true test of a relationship is whether you can travel together. Because traveling together often means that you get absolutely no break from each other for an extended period. By our 10th day or so, we were ready to kill each other, and it took another week or so after we got home to realize that it was Canada’s fault. Now, when anything goes wrong, I blame Canada.
Travel is a very important test of your relationship, Tom. Lots of stress.
I am leaving in May to travel South America for 8 months… My boyfriend (Ive been with him for 5 years) has travelled all over the world with me on 2-3 week trips for the past few years… But I have always wanted to take the leap – quit my job and go travelling for a long period of time.
I decided last year that I had to live this dream.. If you give a dream up for someone you have know for a year you will regret it when you are older (trust me, I know)
I say GO! If you current boyfriend supports you then keep in contact and just see what happens… Life needn’t be so complicated.
My boyfriend supports my dream of travelling South America and we will keep in contact via Skype while I am away… He cant come with me as he loves the job he is in and is saving for an expensive car 🙂 He is done with spending all his $$$ on travelling for now… and I can understand that.
I am going to miss him like crazy… but hey, if we are in this relationship for the long term – then what is 8 months??? Easy!
Best of luck – enjoy your travel adventures! Have the best time of your life!!! You will learn things about yourself that you never even knew! Dont let anyone hold you back 🙂
I like how you both understand and appreciate your different priorities and work together to come to an agreement. It shows that you are mature and if it is worth it you will be OK if not you will still be OK. I am sure it feels more complicated than it actually is. I have found your words very helpful x
Going on a limb here, and I could be wrong…
If she feels selfish for something she’s been planning/dreaming about for awhile, I’m going to guess the boyfriend has been negative towards the entire idea. Not flat-out verbally abusive or anything, but he may be casting a negative light just by being disinterested and not asking about it.
True love supports the other in anything and wants nothing but happiness for the other, even if it means long distance for awhile. (I can vouch for this, but I’ll spare y’all the details!)
That could be, Laryssa — but I’ve found that most Americans in general view long-term travel negatively. The boyfriend could be in favor of long-term travel; the worries about selfishness could come from other friends or family members.
I loved traveling alone, and having my partner meet up with me (if I had one) for short trips during my long trip. That worked in the past. I also loved being single on the road, and not having to worry about finding an internet connection or a phone every day or two to get back in touch.
I’m currently in a relationship with a woman who fully supports my dreams to continue traveling, but I am working a steady 9-5 right now and have only been able to take <= 2 week trips for the past 5 years. She has supported me when I wanted to go alone every year once or twice to another country, and it is fabulous. I love not feeling held back and yet not feeling guilty. Solo travel is really my preference. I think you can find happiness in a relationship that fits all your needs in your daily life.. I think we'd travel OK together, but I Know I"m more adventurous and want to run around a lot more than she does. It's just easier to be selfish on my short vacations, I think!
I do wish she loved travel more because I think I'd love to talk to someone about all the wonderful places I've been and want to go. She does really enjoy traveling and has been out of the country a few times, etc., but she doesn't have the bug as much as I do 🙂
I've toyed with the idea of quitting my job again and doing a 3 or 5 month trip, and it makes me nervous, because I don't want to leave her for that long, or my dog for that matter.. So I don't know how that will work out.
It’s great that you both have an understanding for each other’s needs for travel — AND each other’s travel styles!
“Ask Kate” is like “Dear Abby” for travelers. I say go. If travel is important to one person but not the other there is always going to be problems.
Thank you, Jeff! That’s nice of you to say.
Solid advice, Kate. I totally agree. If you are in a relationship where your partner doesn’t fully support you and shows no real interest in your dreams, then it’s better to let them go. There might be nothing *wrong* with the relationship on the surface, but, at the end of the day, if you don’t want the same things, it’s just not going to work in the long run.
I traveled for about 3 months last summer solo, with a boyfriend back home who always swore he wanted to travel with me, yet made no effort to actually do so. We had a pretty good relationship, but as I was traveling around Europe alone, I came to the realization that things weren’t going to work out between us. I NEED to be with someone who loves traveling as much as I do. So, as difficult as it was, I ended the relationship when I got home. I know that part of the reason I stayed with him as long as I did was because it was easy and part of me was scared of being single again.
But you know what? It was definitely the right decision – for both of us – to let him go.
Agreed. And “just travel” isn’t enough — the right person needs to have an active understanding of just how much travel means to you. It’s more than just going on occasional trips — it’s everything!
Great advice! I agree. It really sounds like she is looking for someone to confirm what she is already feeling.
This is really tricky, but I think if you listen to your heart you know what the right decision will be. If it is real love you will find a compromise, but if it is not maybe you should bite the bullet like Kate said.
Looks like you picked out a great question to reply to on here, Kate. And I’m glad you did. As I said, this is something I’ve been thiking a lot about on and off as well and it’s nice to know I’m not the only one and to read what other people have done with those doubts.
In my rather limited dating experience, I have found finding a longterm boyfriend and travelling long term to be mutually exclusive. All the guys I meet never want to travel. So I appreciate seeing posts by men who are also into travel!
While I think traveling is the greatest thing in life, I think love is even greater. If this guy is the love of her life, which I can’t tell from her question, then she shouldn’t pass him up for travel. If he’s just another guy then I think you definitely gave her the right suggestion!
If he was the right guy for you, he would be enthusiastically planning along with you. The fact that he’s not means that he’s like the vast majority of the population, travel is just too ‘out there’ to conceptualize for himself.
Be free, sister, and trust the beauty and possibilities of the unknown. There are lots of men out there and lots of time. Never settle for someone who isn’t a suitable companion for you in truth.
If he is ‘the one,’ he will be there for you when you return. Let it go for now, make a clean break and look forward. No looking back.
I didn’t study abroad in college because my boyfriend at the time wasn’t going to and I didn’t want to be away from him. That is something I’ve always regretted, especially since I broke up with him the following year anyway. The plus side is that I was even more driven to live abroad in my adult life and ended up marrying a man with the same passion for travel. We’re now living in Shanghai and have traveled to 29 countries, with at least four more on the horizon for 2013. What I learned the hard way in college is that you should never, ever hold yourself back for someone else. If they are truly right for you, they will raise themselves up to meet you. If they don’t, you’ll find some better suited to the person you will become after your journey.
Here’s the thing – If this relationship were worth it, you probably wouldn’t have to ask the question. Three years ago I decided I needed to go somewhere long term. Anywhere. I wanted to travel and the fact that I’d been denying it for so long was making me miserable. And it was making my husband (then of 3 years) miserable, too. So he said, GO!
Was it selfish? Yes. Is that a bad thing? No.
My husband is in the military and couldn’t do a long-term trip. But it was something I wanted, and he supported me 100%. I wanted to do something fairly long-term for around 4-6 months, but I compromised on 2 months. It was fantastic. And now that we know we can handle it, it’s not a big deal when I travel solo.
With the right relationship, it’s entirely possible. But if you’re more comfortable asking someone you’ve never met over your partner, that should probably tell you something…
Great post and great advice! The significant other’s role is to facilitate your development and not to hinder it.
I ended a 4-year relationship to travel and have no regrets. Ironically, sometimes you meet mr. right while traveling.
Your advice is nice, but it has to be a case-by-case thing. One thing I would not recommend is a long-distance relationship while traveling. Those tend to unravel pretty quickly.
I had a boyfriend too that didn’t want to travel, but I told him this is what I’m going to do and if you don’t want to be there with me, then I can do it alone. Needless to say, we are still very close friends, but I’m glad that I chose what I wanted and am happy for it, because I know I will regret it if I decided to try to salvage a relationship with a partner that is not supportive.
Yeah ditch em if they don’t want to go. Traveling will break up relationships, but it makes you stronger as a person.
What are you doing if you’re boyfriend simply is not making enough money to travel with you? I already support my boyfriend financially, but also my money runs out soon 🙁
That’s my story: On my long term travel I fell in love with a guy who lives in .. let”s say a second world country. It was love at first sight, I missed all my following flights and stayed with him. Now I’ve been here since 9 months and I don’t regret it. We really love each other very much.
When I met him, he lived with his family, he moved out and moved with me together, because I could not live with his family (and I didn’t want to.) He stopped going to university and found a job to support me with the monthly expenses. But seriously, it’s not enough. He only earns 300 Dollar a month (average here – it’s a poor country). I still live on my savings, but after traveling for more than a year and living here for the past 9 months, I have not much cash left 🙁
So I run out of savings, and I don’t know what to do. Beside, I miss traveling so much!!! I don’t wanna go home to my home country (Austria), but I guess I have to go soon to make more money. He can’t go without visa. It’s hard for him to get any Visas. People from his country never travel. A passport here cost as much as his monthly salary. Even if he could manage to get a visa, I’m financially not able to support him for the first months until he speaks the language of my country. And would he find a job in Austria? Without working permit? I don’t wanna go home anyway, I wanna travel.
I could be selfish, fly home for 6 month or a year, work, make enough money and travel again. But I don’t wanna leave him, I love him so much. But as long as we stay here, we don’t make any money to save up for new trips.
Any advises what to do here? Thank you Kate!!
Hi it’s interesting to see all the comments on here and to see whatever happened it worked out well! I am struggling because I love my boyfriend who is very supportive and happy for me to travel solo for a few weeks. Problem is we have been together for 9 years ( I am now 27) I have gone through everything with him and we have a house together but now I hardly do anything on my own! I want to get out there and meet lots of different people before I am older. I have lots of friends getting married and having children and I thought I was happy with that but I do not want to settle! I want adventure and freedom! On the other hand I dont want to lose a loving partner though I feel like I have been pushing him away. He isnt ready to travel (no money, committed to job)I want to go next year. This is not a life long plan but something that has just hit me like lightning and feels like the time. Probably a quarterlife crisis! Dont know what to do. Talk about crossroads?
How about if my boyfriend actually can’t go travelling? He would absolutely love to drop everything and come with me, but he’s caring for a sick relative so it’s simply not an option…
Same thing. Talk through every scenario, communicate, and find out each other’s true feelings.
Impressive challenges listed here. I’m prepared to visit your post. Cheers and i am having a look to contact anyone. Do you want to you should decrease me a email?
Not sure if this will receive a reply or is relevant but i’ll post it anyway…
I am 27, I’ve been in my current relationship for 5 yrs minus a break of a couple of months a few years ago. We travelled to France and Jordan at the beginning of the year for nearly 5 weeks with only a few issues (France where we had an accident in the apartment we were renting). It was very amicable, and enlightening for both of us, yet costly. This was the first time we had travelled anywhere together (even in our own country). I miss this experience and was told we could do it again at the end of the year by significant other. He has completely turned around and decided “no” it is too hard for him to catch up on work, and that he wants to buy a house.
I am sick of spending my southern hemisphere summers doing nothing but watch my partner waste money on going out, alcohol and meaningless expenses in general like the $10,000 watch he thinks he needs to feed his ego. I have always wanted to travel, and spent part of my gap year learning Italian in Italy. It wasn’t enough though. I didn’t want to do a tacky tour of the places I wanted to go, and always hoped I’d find the right person to share my passion. My friends have gone in different directions and I never wanted to travel with them anyway, as it would be too close for comfort. To be fair, I am still studying and he paid for a large part of our previous trip, I guess I just thought we could do something more adventurous and less expensive. This was something I thought I could contribute towards more myself this time round. I should be finished at the end of the year.
I guess my thoughts are this: it feels like the person I’m with is heavily swayed by his friends who are settling down, have investment properties, want babies etc with absolutely no inclination for travel – especially not anything off the beaten track, outside of the developed world, in general anything that may change their perceptions of different cultures and people. Is this some sort of male as provider thing i’m coming up against? Or am I just wanting something unattainable right now?
i, if you want to travel, go on your own. If you’re short on cash, go somewhere cheap like Thailand or Nicaragua or Peru. Your boyfriend has made it clear that travel is not his priority, so you shouldn’t expect him to join you. Telling him you want to go on your own will probably open up a dialogue with him about your goals and what you want to do.
I am Becky Jones by name. Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony. I have been rejected by my husband after three(3) years of marriage just because another woman had a spell on him and he left me and the kid to suffer. one day when i was reading through the web, i saw a post on how this spell caster on this address dr.okorospelltemple01@ gmail. com, have help a woman to get back her husband and i gave him a reply to his address and he told me that a woman had a spell on my husband and he told me that he will help me and after 3 days that i will have my husband back. i believed him and today i am glad to let you all know that this spell caster have the power to bring lovers back. because i am now happy with my husband. Thanks for Dr. Okoro. His email: dr.okorospelltemple01@ gmail. com
Dr. OKORO NUMBER: +2348110496023
I’m a constant traveler myself (when my job allows me for short escapades), and I ended up dating a girl who lives on “PERMANENT TRAVEL MODE”, actually we met at a hostel while traveling. I thought it was great to share the same interests and it all worked quite well for over a year until… she refused to travel to some places because she had ALREADY BEN THERE. She’s got lots more holidays and she only lives for traveling, so every time I want to go somewhere, if it’s a place she’s been already then she would suggest: why don’t you go there, and I go there (other new place). Last Xmas I took her to my hometown to show her to my family and I was kinndda hurt she evaluated my town as if it was one more of her touristic destinations, comparing the things she didn’t like with similar things she thought were rather amazing somewhere else (where she traveled alone). Now after spending holidays together I had to come back to work but she is traveling for 3 more weeks. And I’m getting absolutely fed up with this. Why do I have to encourage her travels, feel happy about her amazing hiking, feel happy because she meets amazing people at hostels? Why is there a constant need to go “for the new?” I just realized I love traveling but many people seem to be rather obsessed; so I think my story is opposite to other posts here. She wants to keep me, but I decided it hurts me Im always on a second place, so I rather find someone who loves ME more than airplanes.
You know, you’ve got to be compatible on lots of levels. Sounds like you two didn’t quite have that compatibility.
So, I skimmed through the comments on here and agree that if travel is more important to you than losing the person you are in a relationship with, then go for it. BUT what happens when you know you will be losing the love of your life? True love is a rare thing so how can anyone give it up to travel? You may regret giving up your travel dreams but where are the comments showing regret for giving up a love you will never find again? Apparently we now live in a world of fake love….
What kind of person would forbid their partner to travel and say “It’s me or this trip?” An abusive partner, that’s who.
Great page, I’m asking a question 2 years on lol
I’ve been with my fiancée for 12 years, we are 28 now. I’ve always had a burning desire to travel the world and live free for a year or so but she never has. I love her so have happily given u that dream of a long trip for her.
I still want to travel and have been to Thailand for 2 weeks with a friend, and have been to canada with parents when I was younger! I am dying to see South America and have planned a trip to Peru with a friend for 3 weeks.
This for her is the final straw, and has said if I go then we are finished! I feel I need to do this trip before I can happily start saving for a wedding!
Any body been in this position or have any advice?? 3 weeks is nothing out of a life time together surely?
Dee, that is a very serious ultimatum. In fact, I’d go so far as to call it emotionally abusive. I suggest you at least consider couple’s counseling, because if she does this over travel, she’ll do it over other things, too. You can’t be held hostage all your life.
Hi, me and my partner have been together 3 years. I’m desperate to travel with him but he has 2 kids we have at weekends every 2 to 3 weeks. They are 10 & 12. He does want to travel himself as he was very young and naive when he had the kids. He was trapped in a relationship and wasn’t ready for kids. I think it will be great for us to move on in our relationship. I will compromise because of the kids and go for 4/6 months instead of 1/2 yrs. how do I let him know that I want to start properly planning it so he needs to run it passed the kids mum etc? I’m petrified that because of the kids he wont be able to come with me ? I do love him and want us to experience it together. We would almost certainly breakup if I went without him. Pls help! Need advice!
You’ve got to talk to your partner, Laura. Communication is the most important thing.
What a great answer! I am dealing with the same situation, except my boyfriend and I have been dreaming about travelling together. It has always been my passion to travel the world for several years and just see where life takes you. But for us to be prepared we needed to safe money, so we worked. But at some point his hobbies turned into a very beautiful passion in which I wholeheartedly want to support him. But now comes the kick. His passion requires him to be at home and we can’t work out a reasonable compromise. I feel now I have to choose between him or my passion for travelling. And travelling is something I need to do. It feels like I would cut myself short if I stay for him. But I’m also scared I would walk away from the most kind and amazing man I have ever met.
Do you have the option of traveling temporarily, maybe for a shorter time instead? That’s also an option.
When I decided to travel to Australia for a year my boyfriend was very supportive. He is in school and won’t be able to do this kind of travel for at least 3 years. He likes travel but not the way I do. I just want to point out that before giving up on a relationship see how the other person feels. It has been 3 months of me being away and we are still going strong. I would love if he could be here with me but I support his dreams and he supports mine and to me, that is a rare occurrence for people. Don’t give up right away. I know our relationship may not last, but at least we are trying to make it work and as long as we are supporting one another it never hurts to try if you truly love someone. Give a chance on love, travel, and ultimately long distance. If they are the one, you will know it.
Great Post 🙂 I knoe I am WAAAY late woth this but I am in a similar but alsp different situation. I am pöanning on travelling alone for the fist time. I am in my mid twenties and have been with my boyfriend for a bit over 4 years now. He has am acersion to certain countries and cultures taht he uses as an argument to not wanting to go certain places. We originall planned to go this one place together for 2 weeks but it is a 30+ hour flight all together and he is not a fan of long flights.
I have decided i would rather go alone as he thinks the place im going to is boring and i also want to go much longer. He does not know this. I have contacted a travel agent and arranged my plans. It now adds up to around 8 weeks. I decided to book without talking to him about it as i worry he might try to talk me out of it and ill find some stupid reason to cancel. How do I tell him? How do I let my bf of 4 years know that i have book a two months trip half way across the globe for 8 week on my own. I am a tiny bit scared…
I have the same problem , I’m about to travel to germany for my studies but my boyfriend is totally against and he says that if I go we will break up immediately since he can’t imagine his love going away … I’m torn
If he says that if you leave that you’ll break up immediately, THERE’S YOUR ANSWER. You don’t want someone who holds you hostage. A man who truly respects you will let you live out your dreams.
I have ended up on this website as I am stuck in a rut at the moment. I am 26 have never travelled and have for the last two years dreamed of going to Costa Rica to volunteer in a sloth sanctuary for just two weeks! My partner who is 30 is saving for a mortgage and wants kids right now.. We have been together for 8 years. He has banned me talking about Costa Rica from the house n just rolls his eyes if I bring it up saying it’s a ridiculous idea, I can’t travel alone, I can’t afford it, I’ll get attacked and die Ect ect. His family are against the idea saying I’m being selfish should give him a child and then travel when they’ve grown up n left home.. I can’t think of anything else at the moment, very depressed.
Sam, I’m in pretty much the same position as you except maybe slightly less extreme. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 2 years and though he has always known about my desire to travel, I have entertained the idea about buying a house together recently; I even opened a help to buy ISA fully knowing this has never been something I’ve wanted before. I thought maybe I’d grown up and matured out of my travel desires, and that yearly all inclusive holidays would feed my travel hunger – this way I get to be with the man I love and ‘travel’ too. But recently I’ve started to get real anxiety and it’s dawned on me how big a commitment a mortgage really is, and that I have completely abandoned my life goals. I’ve spoken to him about it and he basically said that if I go we will break up. He is not willing to go on a break and doesn’t see the point in continuing our relationship now, even though I wouldn’t leave for Asia for another 2 years. Like your situation, he rolls his eyes when I talk about my travel desires as he doesn’t understand why I want to do it. Also like your situation, his family have installed him with the idea that you have to buy a house young and settle down, none of them would understand and I fear in fact they would see me as being completely selfish. But how I see it Sam, is that we are being selfish if we don’t go. If we stay and settle because our boyfriends don’t support our desires, we will eventually resent them for it. 20 years from now, do you want to be sitting in the same house with someone who got everything he dreamed of whilst you gave up everything to get him there? It’s not fair on them for us to stay and humour their desires out of fear that we will lose them. Don’t get me wrong, I am very worried that I will be losing the ‘one’ and that I’ll come back from my travels to see him with someone else, but making decisions based on fear is something that nobody should ever do. Decisions should be made on what you know is right for you. Hope this helps.
p.s I’ll also be 26 by the time I leave to travel!
Hi Everyone, I would love to hear your advise. I’m planning a short trip to Cape Cod this summer and want to bring our dog. He’s a small, very easy to travel with little guy (under 25 lbs.). I asked my boyfriend of 9 years (we don’t live together) if he would like to join me and he said he would not enjoy himself if our dog comes with us. So he said he will not come with me.
I want to look around the area as a possible place to move within the year and I want my boyfriend to see the Cape to see what he thinks. I’m going on the trip with our dog because in the 6 years we’ve had him, I’ve always wanted to bring him along but have always given into my boyfriend’s wishes not to.
Please let me know your thoughts…. I feel kind of lost. Thank you.
I don’t want to sound judgmental but if you are together for nine years but do not live together is this mutual decision to live this way?how is the dog going to change the holiday? Is he your dog alone? Does he not like your partner?
I appreciate the advice on this and I’ve been looking for advice from someone who can mirror my situation, but nothing quite the same. So I hope someone here can offer an opinion.
For the past 5 years, I’ve been travelling around and (mostly living in Asia). I’m not in China and dating a Chinese English teacher. I am very sick of living here and am ready to leave in a few months, a fact she knows. She has obligations here for another year, and would like me to return to China after my return home to see my family over the winter. As I said, I don’t like living here anymore, but would certainly like to travel in China more than I have.
She loves to travel too, although has never been outside of China. Come next summer, she is willing to go anywhere with me, though we’ve discussed Thailand or Malaysia, as they are near enough to her home to be a good stepping stone into the world. My big diliemma is that I’m not sure I want to immediately settle in another city again, which she would need to do for a teaching job. I lived in Thailand on and off for almost 3 years before China and really want something new.
The other tricky part comes in that, because she is Chinese it’s very difficult for her to move around like I (USA) can. On top of that I can work online from anywhere, but she needs to be stationed somewhere for a teaching job.
The ultimatum of breaking it off to that I can have complete freedom of travel, or compromise and delay for 2 more years by staying relative stationary in Asia with her? Sure, I’d still be able to travel around, but it’d be in places I’ve mostly already been.
I came across this while searching for ‘I don’t want to leave my boyfriend to go backpacking’ which is exactly how I’m feeling right now! I’m supposed to be leaving for a two month trip to Nepal on Sunday but am having second thoughts. My boyfriend is extremely supportive of me going, he would have loved to come too but he has two young children 5 and 3 so it’s not an option. Though part of me knows I’ll be fine once I’m out there, right now I’m terrified about travelling alone (I haven’t before) and can’t imagine being without him for that long. It’s also brought to the fore the ways in which he can’t join me in things I want to do and that our relationship is held back by his previous one. I’m 29 and we’ve been together a year and communicate very well. I guess I’m just looking for some reassurance from someone who’s been equally unsure about going yet it all worked out in the end! I’m hoping the time away will help me build my confidence and become less relationship focussed as I often find the fact he has to spend time away from me to be with the children or doing family things quite hard to swallow. I’m hoping this trip will give me some perspective on what I want as well as the confidence to go through with it, though right now it feels like the last thing I want to do!! I’ve just moved 300 miles to be near him (we were long distance only seeing eachother at weekends before) and I haven’t yet settled in my new location, no job, friends etc. Everything feels a bit up in the air and like I’m without direction, I’m worried travelling so soon after uprooting will feel too challenging. Any advice or similar stories would be appreciated 🙂 xxx
Leave a Comment Cancel Reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .
Subscribe to the blog: First Name First Name Your email Your email Submit
What to do when your partner doesn’t share your love of travel
Your idea of the best vacation ever is traipsing on any of our Rome tours in search of history and the perfect gelato. Your partner’s take on a wonderful week off goes no further than the backyard or the beach. What do you do?
Going solo on a guided tour, asking a friend along, or making the trip into a family vacation are all great ways to fulfill your travel dreams. Keep reading for six ways you can travel while in a relationship with a partner who won’t—and check out our amazing tours that are on sale during our Black Friday Event !
See all of our Solo Tours
4.7 star rating
4.8 star rating
4.9 star rating
4.6 star rating
4.5 star rating
Read more about solo travel
- My Favourites
- Travel Advice
My partner doesn't like to travel, but I love it - and it works
This avid traveller dreamt of a mile-high hook-up, but instead found herself with a partner who doesn't even like to travel.
This article may contain links from our affiliate and advertising partners. When you click on them, or share this content, we may earn a commission. Learn more
50 best camping accessories and gadgets to pack in 2023
My no.1 complaint about European beaches
One place you should never drink in the UK and Ireland
You don’t always get what you want. I fancied I’d snag my significant other the way Sophie Monk met her fiancé – on a long-haul flight cosily ensconced 30,000 feet above the world, peeping shyly from under eye masks, sharing a joke at the expense of a hapless hostie and clutching hands in a fit of turbulence.
Good thing I didn’t hold out for the mile-high hook-up because I’d still be spectacularly single. Why? My partner isn’t a fan of travel.
Travel divides people into two distinct groups. There are those born with a bucket-list, eagerly plastering bedroom walls (later screensavers and Instagram pages) with the Eiffel Tower and the Taj Mahal, who dream of haggling in a Marrakech souk, greeting the dawn with monks in Mandalay and hiking the giddy heights of Machu Picchu. And there are the others (statistics reveal a surprising 40 per cent of Australians) who never venture overseas, don’t possess a passport and fail to see what the fuss is about.
See also: My failed attempt at joining the mile high club
See also: Airline launches 45-minute Mile High Club flights
While I side unswervingly with the itchy-footed, the man I live with is rooted firmly on team couch. My travel bug will never be tamed and my bucket-lists are longer than the lines to visit Chairman Mao’s tomb on a Chinese national holiday, but The Other Half (TOH) views the world through a less intrepid lens.
Travel for him is a purely utilitarian exercise to be deployed in the event of a wedding, a wake or visiting family interstate. My frivolous “let’s go there for the hell of it” is an alien approach that fills him with trepidation and distrust.
For me, Covid has been an angst-ridden ride, the uncertainty of when we will be free to roam again clawing at my mind like malnourished monkeys as the blank pages in my precious passport gather wasted years. For TOH, Covid has been a blessing, the perfect excuse to put his feet up without fear of being dragged to some dreary destination.
Our travel libidos are on two different planes and I’m not talking Boeing Dreamliners but, before you tell me to throw in the complimentary warm towelette, listen up. Somewhere between my overexcitement and his ennui, I believe there exists a happy place.
When I can convince TOH to take a trip, he’s the insouciant yin to my insatiable yang. Free from itinerary or agenda, he remains unflappable. Flight delays, seasonal closures or the entire fifth floor of the hotel on fire – it all leaves him enviably unperturbed with a Zen-like attitude that anchors my A-type leanings long enough to stop and smell the sandalwood.
And when TOH chooses not to check in? Well, did Captain Cook’s wife join him on his journeys of global discovery? She was doubtless horrified by the tales of scurvy and high seas and happy to keep the home fires burning. Was Amelia Earhart’s husband beside his aviator wife on her solo crossing of the Atlantic Ocean? Of course not. He was serenely smoking cigars in his study, one ear bent to the broadcast of her progress over the sea.
While research suggests that travelling together strengthens a relationship, there is an equally compelling argument for “absence makes the heart grow fonder”. I may have to initiate the journey, make the plans and often go it alone, but when the going gets tough I know TOH will be there to hold my hand. Even if that’s sometimes from the couch. You don’t always get what you want, but you might just get exactly what you need.
It took getting ghosted by my boyfriend to fall in love with travel
The sting in my holiday romance
6 rules every couple needs to survive a road trip
All the essentials - and a few handy gadgets as well.
How can Europe be so uptight about wearing bikinis and boardshorts off the beach (to the point where some shops have banned them) and yet so laissez faire about dropping your dacks to get changed, while letting it all 'hang out' on the beach?
Sip on this... Or rather, don't.
Forget Summer Bay, I found the best beaches ever
Sydney's beaches are famous, but this Home and Away actor says she found some of the world's best beaches in an unexpected destination.
5 Relationship Issues No Couple Should Ignore
Paying attention is vital, but both partners need to do it..
Posted February 19, 2018 | Reviewed by Matt Huston
- The demand/withdraw relationship pattern is associated with depression, physical abuse, and the mental health symptoms of young adult children.
- Avoiding one's partner may be rationalized as "keeping the peace," but needs to stop if the relationship is to be salvaged.
- Making it clear that one is "done" talking is often a manipulative power play.
"I knew that my marriage was floundering, but I didn’t know how to fix it. Fifteen years in, enough of what we’d once had was so eroded that there wasn’t any real way of retrieving it. I think both of us were just sick and tired of the arguing, the relationship, and each other."
Some years ago, a wise therapist named Susan, whose practice was mainly devoted to couples’ counseling, confided a sad truth as we talked about whether joint therapy with my then-husband would work. She shook her head and then continued: “The reality is that it’s relatively rare that the counseling works, because people wait too long. Therapy is usually seen as a last-ditch effort to salvage the marriage, and it’s not always agreed to in good faith either. A husband or wife may simply accede because he or she wants to be seen as ‘having tried everything.’ By the time they book an appointment with me, the marriage has been failing for years. And it’s just too late. For those couples, my office is just a stop and a parking lot away from the divorce lawyer’s.”
Relationship expert John Gottman has long asserted that he can successfully predict whether a marriage will last by homing in on the absence and presence of certain key behaviors, which he calls “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.” They are, in his view, criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling. He defines criticism as separate from complaint, since criticism is highly personalized and accusatory; let’s say you are upset with your spouse for leaving the living room windows open with rain in the forecast, and the curtains got soaked. Rather than addressing the issue, you begin with a litany of his or her flaws, with the words “You always” or “You never.” Contempt includes responding to your partner’s words or thoughts with gestures that belittle or mock, or becoming verbally abusive by name-calling or assailing him or her with a litany of character “flaws.” This isn’t just a power play and highly manipulative; it conveys how little you respect a person you are supposed to love and care about. Defensiveness is just what it sounds like: getting into a defensive crouch, denying responsibility, playing tit-for-tat, or making excuses for your words, behaviors, or actions. Of course, if criticism and contempt are already part of the landscape, defensiveness may be the only way to protect yourself from abuse. These three horsemen tend to show up together. Lastly, there is stonewalling , which is perhaps the most damaging of the four, since it signals the end of dialogue and communication. The person stonewalling — according to Gottman, it’s the man 85 percent of the time — communicates disdain by folding his arms and not deigning to answer, and signals his smugness by the coldness of his glare. It’s the ultimate emotional shutout and likely to provoke an outsized emotional response from his partner.
The more these behaviors become habitual, the more trouble the relationship is in. So it’s hugely important that you seek the advice of a marriage counselor at their first appearance. Time is of the essence.
Yes, this one is the death knell for relationships, and you’ll note that all of the behaviors catalogued by John Gottman actually dovetail into this larger pattern. It’s been studied often enough that it has an acronym (DM/W), and it’s not just a powerful predictor of divorce, but also associated with depression , physical abuse, and the mental health symptoms of young adult children, according to a meta-analysis review conducted by Paul Schrodt and his co-authors.
Demand/withdraw provides a snapshot of a relationship that has broken down irretrievably, or is in the process of doing so. One partner makes a demand — most usually the woman, but not always, according to research — and is answered by withdrawal or stonewalling. It’s worth saying that most theorists believe that the fact that the woman is most often in the “demander” position has to do with socialization. The problem with this pattern is that it has escalation built into it. The person making the demand feels it’s legitimate and will up the ante when greeted by silence, while the person who’s withdrawn will only feel more beset and attacked. Importantly, each person feels victimized and is likely to justify her or his response. Yes, folks, welcome to the carousel you can’t dismount.
How childhood experiences factor in
Not every person falls into the destructive patterns described by John Gottman, and there’s research attesting to who is more likely to have their marriage or relationship shot down by DM/W: those whose emotional needs weren’t met in childhood and have insecure attachment styles. This shouldn’t come as a total surprise, since securely attached people are capable of regulating their emotions and are comfortable articulating their own needs; they’re also more likely to choose partners who have the same skills. That’s simply not true of those who display one of the three insecure attachment styles: anxious -preoccupied, fearful-avoidant, or dismissive-avoidant. (My book, Daughter Detox , explores this in fuller detail.)
Our experiences in childhood affect not just our need and tolerance for intimacy , but also our ability to engage in discussion without feeling threatened; this is especially true of those who have an avoidant attachment style. A study by Robin A. Barry and Erika Lawrence found that avoidantly attached husbands withdrew in direct proportion to the amount of negative affect expressed by their wives in demand situations. This was true both in conflict situations and in those that required the husband to support and take care of his spouse. Similarly, avoidantly attached husbands who perceived discussions about solving problems in marriage as potentially destructive were much more likely to withdraw and disengage. But the anxious-preoccupied style that many unloved daughters display can equally provide the fuel for this toxic pattern. Always on the lookout for reassurance that she’s indeed loved and valued — and inclined to be hypervigilant about possible threats — her demands may well seem to suck the oxygen out of the room and can cause her partner to withdraw under what feels like a siege.
In every relationship that’s troubled, there’s a point of no return that, unfortunately, can only be seen in hindsight. Following are some completely anecdotal tips drawn from my own experience and those of others; I am neither a therapist nor a psychologist. Again, working with a counselor needs to happen sooner rather than later.
1. You and/or your partner evade each other.
This can be either literal or metaphorical — such as making sure you’re never in a position to have a private conversation, pulling out a cell phone, remembering an errand you have to run when your partner wants to talk, or changing your schedule so there’s little time face-to-face. You or your partner may rationalize this as “turning down the heat” or “keeping the peace,” but if you actually hope to salvage the relationship, you need to cut it out.
2. Every conversation and interaction escalates.
Walking on eggshells is unhealthy, and when the petty begins to dominate — who filled up the car last, who didn’t flag the fact that we’re out of eggs — you’re in trouble, as are your children, if you have them. When you find yourself irritated by your partner’s familiar habits, the relationship is in deep waters.
3. One or both of you stop discussing major decisions or choices.
A woman I know finally realized how bad things had gotten when she learned her husband of six years had applied for a job in another city without telling her; he had, however, mentioned it to a neighbor with whom he commuted. Beginning to think of yourself as single isn’t a sign of independence in this context.
4. You or your partner display shifts in behavior.
If you or your partner have difficulty talking about your feelings directly or even identifying them, the depth of someone’s unhappiness is sometimes communicated nonverbally through shifts in behaviors. Are you distracted most of the time and pretty much ignoring your spouse, focusing on personal goals that have nothing to do with your marriage? Does your partner seem distant and preoccupied? Are either or both of you avoiding physical contact?
5. You or your partner make it clear that you’re “done” talking.
This is both manipulative and a power play, and it could equally be called the “gauntlet” moment: You take it or leave it. No matter how hopeful you are for a resolution, you actually need to take your partner at his or her word, because it’s really a declaration that he or she has absolutely no intention of changing. Period.
Whether a relationship can be salvaged depends on both partners, as well as timing.
Copyright © 2018 Peg Streep
Facebook image: Jan Faukner/Shutterstock
Gottman, John. Why Marriages Succeed or Fail. New York: Fireside, 1994.
Schrodt, Paul, Paul L. Witt, and Jenna R. Shimkowski, "A Meta-Analytical Review of the Demand/Withdraw Pattern of Interaction and its Association with Individual, Relational, and Communicative Outcomes, Communication Mongraphs, 81,1 (April 2014), 27-58.
Barry, Robin A. and Erika Lawrence, “Don’t Stand So Close to Me: An Attachment Perspective of Disengagement and Avoidance in Marriage,” Journal of Family Psychology (2013), vol.27, no.3, 564-494.
Peg Streep's newest book is Verbal Abuse: Recognizing, Dealing, Reacting, and Recovering. She is the author or coauthor of 15 books, including Daughter Detox: Recovering from an Unloving Mother and Reclaiming Your Life.
- Find a Therapist
- Find a Treatment Center
- Find a Psychiatrist
- Find a Support Group
- Find Teletherapy
- United States
- Brooklyn, NY
- Chicago, IL
- Houston, TX
- Los Angeles, CA
- New York, NY
- Portland, OR
- San Diego, CA
- San Francisco, CA
- Seattle, WA
- Washington, DC
- Bipolar Disorder
- Chronic Pain
- Eating Disorders
- Passive Aggression
- Goal Setting
- Positive Psychology
- Stopping Smoking
- Low Sexual Desire
- Child Development
- Therapy Center NEW
- Diagnosis Dictionary
- Types of Therapy
The people around us have a stronger influence on our decisions and actions than we realize. Here’s what research reveals about our networks’ gravitational force.
- Coronavirus Disease 2019
- Affective Forecasting
Lets Go Bear Travels
Family travel made easy
What to do when your partner doesn’t like family travelling?
Some families have the great challenge of holidaying with a fussy eater, bad flyer, naysayer and complainer. We are not talking about the children here, but their spouse! Your partner is your world, your rock, and there’s no way you could live without him or her. Through travel, you want to create many priceless memories together as a family.
However when your loved one isn’t on board with your travel plans; whether they are reluctant to try new things, afraid of new environments or meeting foreigners, it will make family travel very difficult.
So here is what you need to do to convince your partner to go on family travelling:
Find out why they don’t want to travel
Are they afraid of getting lost? There are WiFi and Google maps. Afraid of language barrier? Visit an English speaking country or download Google translate. Afraid of foreign food? McDonald’s are everywhere! Afraid of flying? Introduce some stats: flying is a lot safer than road travel. Stop watching shows like Air crash investigations!
Go where they want to go
Tie your next family travel destination to the interests of your spouse. For example, if they are into wines – head to Bordeaux. If it is football – head to Barcelona to see the Nou Camp!
Unless you are married to a cardboard cutout, there will be at least one thing that will help convince your spouse to go. It might be movie shooting locations, awesome shops or cool modern buildings. Show your spouse what they will see ensuring them it will not be days of endless changing nappies and Disney stuff.
Address the “We don’t have enough money to travel” objection
Travelling doesn’t have to be expensive and there are many ways to save money while travelling . Also don’t forget that family travelling especially with toddlers almost cost nothing extra . At first try travelling locally or visit this years’ value for money destinations .
Tell them you want to go!
Some people we know never actually tell their partner of their dream to take the family travelling! Simply tell your partner why you want to travel, and what you want to experience. If you feel you need to recharge from day to day parenting, work and have a change from daily routine, bring this up with your spouse. Share how you feel going on a family holiday will positively impact your family’s life.
Gentle persuasion also helps
Plant your persuasion seeds. For example, if you want to encourage your spouse to travel to Japan, eat out at ramen restaurants. You can also watch movies that bring the city or culture into focus. For us, when we watched James Bond’s Skyfall (the best one ever!), it made us fall in love with London all over again – hence family trip there .
Show how well prepared you are
From booking airfares to accommodation to sorting out public transport make sure everything is lined up so once you reach the destination, it’s all smooth going. Show your spouse how organized and hassle free the holiday will be. There’s nothing to stress about.
Ensure them flights with the children will be manageable
There are many ways to survive long haul flights with children . Most toddlers and older children enjoy plane travel as the in flight entertainment system will keep them busy. If the concern is a long flight, consider upgrading to business class for comfort, or plan a stopover to break the trip.
Let them see other travelling families
Remind them there are countless other families that travel all the time to all sorts of destinations. Lead them to read family travel blogs (like ours!). Follow other family’s Instagram pages. These will assure your spouse that so many other families embrace the concept of family travel.
Keep your partner away from the naysayers
A lot of travel news we hear from the media are almost always negative. Unfortunately this is the kind of story that sells! Yes, family travel is still safe . Also don’t rule out destinations based on your one friend’s negative experience. If we had listened to all our friends’ comments (those who seem to know a lot but never actually been), we would never have visited beautiful and amazing countries like India, China , Turkey and Nepal .
Maybe you have different definitions of “fun.”
It's completely normal to wonder whether your relationship will last. And there are a lot of different indicators about what makes a strong relationship or a weak one, but we often overlook one of the most basic and obvious tells: how do you spend your time together?
If you feel present and comfortable around each other, if you have fun, and if you communicate well , consider yourselves on the right track . If things feel awkward, your partner doesn’t value your opinion, or if you’re in a constant state of disagreement, that’s when the signs start pointing towards a breakup. According to certified matchmaker and relationship coach Daphney Poyser , “It's a good practice to routinely check in with your partner on a regular basis to ensure that you are both on the same page. It’s easy to let the day-to-day distractions make you lose sight of the time and energy that you are putting into your relationship to keep it healthy.”
Of course, there’s also the issue of not spending enough time together , which is a red flag on its own. If you’re pushing to hang out but your partner is often busy (or vice versa) you’re already off to a rocky start. "It suggests that there’s a disparity in what you both want this relationship to be,” Aimee Hartstein , LCSW, a licensed clinical social worker, tells Bustle.
It sounds so obvious on paper, but it’s easy to look past even the most obvious bad signs in the early stages of a relationship . “[That’s when] dopamine is higher, which produces a sense of pleasure that may be greater than the reality,” Kelly Morrow Baez, Ph.D., LPC, NCC , a licensed professional counselor, tells Bustle. “It takes about four months for the ‘glow’ to wear off and for people to begin to be themselves — for better or worse.”
So if you really like this person, you can hold off on judging how compatible you really are ‘til then. But, if you're spending time together on a regular basis, there are a lot of different signs as to whether or not your relationship will last in the long run — here’s what to look for.
You Both Need To Have A Drink In Hand
While it’s super common to go out for drinks with a partner , take note if it feels like you have to drink in order to hang out. Drinking could be your way of making an incompatible relationship feel more compatible. It also might be a way to mask negative emotions, Baez says, like loneliness or boredom.
To figure out what’s going on, try planning more dates where alcohol isn’t involved . Ride bikes in a park, get burritos, go to the movies — and see if you’re able to relax and have fun with each other without an adult beverage. If you struggle to get comfy or to develop a deeper connection over time, it definitely means this relationship isn’t for you.
Loving Text Messages Begin To Fade
As time progresses, most couples tend to fall into a routine together and become really comfortable; while that can be a great sign that you’re both building a solid life together, it’s also a good idea to be cautious about just how comfortable you’re becoming.
“We all get busy, but at the end of the day our partners want to hear that we care about them, and if you haven't heard that lately it may be time to speak up.” says Poyser. Specifically with communication, it’s important to remember that expressing your love and care for your partner should be a regular behavior. Sending a simple text saying “I love you” or complimenting the cute outfit they wore to work may only take 2 seconds, but it can make all the difference.
If you come to notice that your partner doesn’t text throughout the day or the week, or that they don’t return your loving energy in their texts, that can be a red flag.
You Can’t Be Quiet Together
Consider how it feels whenever the conversation dips. Are you able to cruise through these moments of silence? Or do they make you want to crawl out of your skin?
According to relationship coach Melinda Carver , compatible couples will be able to sit quietly with each other from time to time — like when you’re driving or drinking coffee — without assuming something’s wrong or feeling awkward. If you and your partner are constantly needing to fill that silence, you may not be comfortable enough with each other to make it in the long haul.
You Have Different Definitions Of “Fun”
Another telltale sign is if you and your partner have different ideas of what makes a good time. “If one of you is a homebody and the other one always wants to be out socializing, it will likely be an issue,” Harstein says. The same goes for being outdoorsy versus indoorsy, laidback versus adventure-seeking — the list of incompatibilities goes on and on.
You and your partner don’t have to share every single interest in order to work as a couple. You can both do things on your own and have separate hobbies. (In fact, that’s a good thing.) It is a problem, however, if you’re so different that you literally can’t make plans.
Your Partner’s Interests Are The Main Priority
Let’s say you are able to make plans, but the things you do revolve solely around your partner’s interests. If that’s the case, “there is a chance that you won't feel like a priority later on in the relationship,” Ashley Gray, LCSW, a licensed clinical social worker, tells Bustle. And that’s because it’s a red flag that they only care about themselves.
To test if it’s a big deal, invite your partner to do something with you that represents your interests. Or invite them to hang out with your friend group . If they’re down to try new things — even if it’s just because they know it’ll make you happy — your relationship may stand a chance. If they refuse or act miserable the entire time? Run.
They Blame You When Things Go Wrong
Were you late for the movie? Did you miss the subway? Note how your partner acts in these less-than-ideal moments. If they shut down, angrily blame you, or get defensive , Gray says it doesn’t bode well for the future. Behaviors like these, coined the “four horsemen” by relationship expert Dr. John Gottman , tend to predict the end of a relationship with eerie accuracy.
“The four horsemen are defensiveness, criticism, stonewalling, and contempt,” Gray says. “While all couples engage in these behaviors at times, if they dominate the majority of your time together, they create a disconnect in your relationship. The greater the duration of the disconnect, the greater the chances are that you will grow apart and eventually split up.”
You Show Love Differently
If you meet up for a date and your partner brings flowers, but you’ve said 100 times that you don’t like flowers, consider it a minor but totally valid red flag. “This doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker, but it can cause major issues without the willingness to put in the work,” Erica Cramer, LCSW, MBA , a dating and relationship expert with Cobb Psychotherapy, tells Bustle.
It all comes back to how you like to give and receive affection. “Our ‘ love languages ’ are almost innate and are crucially important to the way we process our relationships and what fulfills us,” Cramer says. “If your partner’s love language is based in acts of service, you need to understand that and be prepared to put that out there for life. If your love language is touch and your partner does not like PDA, cuddling, or contact and isn’t willing to work on it, it can become a void within you throughout the relationship.”
You Hold Back Hurt Feelings
You’re not wrong to get upset when your partner is late for a date, when they cut you off mid-sentence, or do something else that leaves you feeling undervalued. “Do not make excuses early in a relationship for not feeling fulfilled,” says Cramer. “This can impact your happiness, cause resentment, and does not make for a relationship that will be healthy or happy over time.”
So take note if it constantly feels like you’re biting your tongue or compromising in order for things to work. “To some extent, making personal concessions in the honeymoon stage of a relationship is normal,” Cramer says. You just don’t want to make it a habit — overly compromising can lead to hiding who you really are, and vice versa with your partner.
You See Changes In Behavior
The beginning of a new relationship is often dubbed the “honeymoon phase,” and that honeymoons cannot last forever. “It's no secret that at the beginning of a relationship things are typically exciting and you make time for each other no matter what,” Poyser says. “However, as the relationship builds you may start to see subtle or sudden changes in your partner's behavior that could possibly indicate trouble in paradise.”
Even though those initial feelings of constant excitement and infatuation may calm down over time, there is a major difference between those feelings losing intensity and those feelings disappearing altogether. If you or your partner notice a shift in displays of affection, wanting to spend quality time together, it may be time to evaluate whether or not you both are still happy in the relationship.
Time Is Lost To Sitting On The Couch
Poyser advises to “Notice how long it's been since you went out on a real date and assess if it is because of outside interference, or just your partner losing interest in spending time with you.” It may be difficult to consider because you might not like the answer, but it’s important to fully understand where your partner is at.
When you find that you and your partner spend most of your time together sitting on the couch watching TV or scrolling on your phone, a conversation most likely needs to happen. Date nights and actual quality time are necessary to help a relationship thrive.
You’re Always Distracted When You’re With Them
Instead of talking with your new partner, do you find yourself staring off into space, wondering what your friends are up to, or — worst of all — checking your phone? If so, it’s OK to admit that you may not be a good match, certified counselor and dating coach Jonathan Bennett tells Bustle.
It could be a sign that you aren’t connecting, that you don’t feel comfortable, or that you aren’t ready to invest in the relationship. If the other person is also on their phone, well, you might as well call things off right now.
(Note: This one doesn’t count if you’ve been together forever. While it may not be ideal to check your phones while out on a date, doing so doesn’t necessarily mean you’re incompatible.)
You Get On Each Other’s Nerves
Having the occasional argument is fine. But if it seems like you’re constantly getting on each other’s nerves, it might mean you have different attachment styles . “A person's attachment style is their specific way of relating to others in relationships,” Cramer says. The four main styles? Secure, anxious, avoidant, and fearful-avoidant, she explains.
Just like love languages, some of these don’t match up very well — and that can be a bad thing in the long run. If you are avoidant while your partner is anxious, for example, it might start to feel like they’re asking too much of you. On the flip side, they’ll likely feel as if you don’t care or are bad at communicating.
“People ignoring these signs early on can invest a lot of time and energy into partnerships that will drain them,” Cramer says.
You Never Talk About The “Big” Stuff
While you might not talk about five-year plans on a first date, it shouldn’t be too long before you get to the point where you chat about the big stuff — like how you feel about marriage, goals for your career, and whether or not you want kids.
The same goes for sharing heavy stories from your past, or whatever else you’d like a partner to know. Being able to talk about these things is a clear sign that you feel comfortable around each other, Rabbi Shlomo Slatkin , a licensed clinical professional counselor, tells Bustle, which often points to a strong future.
If you feel like there a certain things you can't voice to your partner, that may be a sign that they're just not the right fit for you.
You Never Do Anything Romantic
While your lives can’t be all romance, all the time, it isn’t a great sign if you and your partner have completely given up on making an effort, Ravid Yosef , a dating and relationship coach, tells Bustle, especially if you haven’t known each other very long.
It’s one thing to fall into a cozy pattern where you let your hair down and simply exist with each other. But if you want your relationship to last, you’ll both have to commit to making an effort in order to keep your connection strong, exciting, and worthwhile. If you don’t, one or both of you will feel less invested — and chances are you’ll go your separate ways.
Daphney Poyser , certified matchmaker & relationship coach
Aimee Hartstein, LCSW , therapist
Kelly Morrow Baez, Ph.D., LPC, NCC , licensed professional counselor
Jonathan Bennett , certified counselor and dating coach
Melinda Carver , relationship coach
Erica Cramer, LCSW, MBA , dating and relationship expert
Rabbi Shlomo Slatkin , licensed clinical professional counselor
Ravid Yosef , dating and relationship coach
This article was originally published on November 14, 2017
When your partner doesn't like travelling...
Travel Forums General Talk When your partner doesn't like travelling...
I've never travelled by myself and to tell you the truth, I don't believe I would have enjoyed it without the proper company. My boyfriend finds travelling boring and a waste of money. He just can't understand why I like it and why the trip with him is not the same as the trip with my friend(s) or family. On the other hand, I find it very difficult to accept that he will never be my dream-companion.
I was wondering if any of you have a partner that really but really doesn't like to travel? How can I make a compromise with my boyfriend and don't betray the traveller in me at the same time?
Maybe it's just that I never met anyone who likes travelling as much as I do. Or most of the people just don't have money and they don't dare to dream. I feel that I wouldn't be happy travelling with any person I know. On the other hand, travelling by myself really scares me.
It sounds like your boyfriend may have had horrid travel experiences previous that has put him off travelling completely!! Short journey trips are a great idea, to try and get him comfortable with the idea. Get him involved in the planning, maybe something like a game to play as you arrive at your destination? Include his interests...what he enjoys to see and do...etc!
But dont exclude travelling by yourself or the experiences you could have with other travel companions either. Maybe that is something you need to do as well..? Be completely open to meeting new people and enjoying all new experiences too. You may see another side of yourself that you never knew existed! Maybe you could go on over night trips away by yourself and see if you conquer your fear of travelling alone...?
there's only so many passionate people you can chat to before getting a little bit interested no?
Get him to watch Michael Palin on some of his travels, if that doesn't inspire him, I don't know what will! I'm reading his Himalaya book at the moment & I'm finding it fascinating.
That's a tough one. On one hand, everyone's different - and someone who doesn't like travelling is perfectly justified to have other interests. On the other hand, if it means that much to you then it should make him happy to make you happy. I have a friend whose ex-boyfriend refused to travel. In his case, he was rather anti-social (he rarely even came out with us!) - and not wanting to travel was one more symptom of a bigger problem. In the end, she broke up with him because he just didn't want to get involved in her life.
However, maybe your boyfriend simply doesn't like to travel. But don't let that dissuade you! You hold the decision to travel in YOUR hands. Don't wait for him to decide how you should run your life. It's your life to live, and your dreams to fulfill. Go off on your own - try it for a short trip and see how it feels. You'll probably discover that solo travelling has wonderful rewards (I love it!). Then you can come home and share your experiences with your boyfriend and know you've done something special for yourself. Don't push that urge to travel down. You may regret it - and perhaps resent him - later on.
Quoting jasminasab I've never travelled by myself and to tell you the truth, I don't believe I would have enjoyed it without the proper company.
If you never tried traveling by yourself, how do you know that you won't like it? I never thought that I'd enjoy traveling solo until I finally did it, and now I love it! My guy doesn't like traveling either. Fortunately, he doesn't mind that I go by myself. Of course, sometimes I'm somewhere beautiful and romantic and wish that he'd be there with me, but traveling without him is far better than not traveling at all. Other times I'm glad that he's not with me, because I know he wouldn't enjoy some things that are of great interest to me. I once considered the possibility that he's not the right person for me because traveling is such a big part of my life - how can I be with someone who does not share my biggest passion?? But then I decided that we can't really pick and choose who we fall in love with and he has so many qualities that are rare to find in a man and are important to me. So, my advice to you is to try traveling by yourself and see if you like it. Or, travel with a friend, although I personally find this option much trickier than traveling solo. Have you tried doing a tour? I did a GAP tour in Central America and I highly recommend it. Except for 1 couple and 2 girls who were traveling together, the rest of the group were solo travellers. This way you're technically "by yourself", but in reality never alone. If you don't like the rigidness of a tour, there are some hop-on hop-off tours that are more flexible. Don't cancel trips just because your BF doesn't want to go or you'll one day come to resent him!
I´m with Mtgal. It´s just the idea of travelling alone that´s offputting. Once you go for it, it´s great. Of course, you could find that you just don´t like travelling alone, in which case you are back to square one. But, at least if you try you might find it´s the perfect solution.
I can´t say enough good things about travelling alone. I have had very few lonely days when i have done solo trips. You are as free as the wind and it´s a great feeling. You meet infinitely more people than when you travel with someone you know.
I say, go for it! Book a holiday somewhere by yourself - maybe a shortish one to begin with. Stay in hostels, plan activities with other backpackers and see how it suits you.
Like Mtgal said, I´d rather travel alone than not travel at all, and you shouldn´t totally neglect doing something that you love for someone else.
Andalucia has been my dream for a long time, so I'm not gonna give it up. I guess I might give it a try, even on my own. I'll just postphone it for now.
Quoting jasminasab You guys are the best. I feel like I've finally met a bunch of dream-mates I'd been wanting to met all my life.
It certainly has that effect around here! All kinds of insperation! Like mentioned above, you should really try some solo travel; it can be a real eye opener.
General Talk Threads
- UK to USA ESTA - Help!
- What do you enjoy most about travel? A poll
- In two words, why do you travel?
- Keeping track of costs
- Wiki travel guide
Matador Original Series
Traveling Solo: How To Tell Your Partner You Want To Travel...alone
EVERYONE HAS A DIFFERENT approach to travel; for some, being the lone wolf is best.
I’m going to assume that anyone actively seeking out this sort of advice wants to travel alone for wholly innocent reasons — namely, a burning desire to see the world –and nothing nefarious (ahem…Thai school girls, cough…Kuta cowboys).
The fact of the matter is, it’s a tough situation. There’s no easy way to tell your lady or man you want to hit the road solo, so before approaching your better half, ask yourself why you want to travel alone. You need to have a good reason.
Be honest, sensitive, and rational.
If you can’t be honest with yourself about your reasons for wanting to leave, then how do you expect to be honest with your significant other?
There’s a strong likelihood your main squeeze is going to be hurt by your desire to travel alone. Be sensitive to the fact that being in a relationship means wanting to share experiences in your life with another person.
Speak calmly, take it slow, and most importantly, be 100% honest. Lying or telling half-truths is just plain disrespectful and if that’s the route you want to take, you might as well end the relationship.
Also, be sure you have your rationalizations on the matter soundly worked out, because nothing will spell disaster faster than zero justification for travelling alone. Your number one goal here is to put your partner at ease and make him or her understand your reasons.
Avoid saying things like, “If I wanted to cheat on you, why would I travel halfway around the world to do it?” As sincere as you may be with that sentiment, it’s just plain weak. If it were true, pretty much every red light district in the world would cease to exist.
There are a million and one reasons why someone would travel halfway around the world to cheat on their significant other – namely because it’s halfway around the world.
Put yourself in your partner’s shoes.
Realize that your desire to travel alone while in a relationship is not exactly a common sentiment. It’s difficult for a lot of people to wrap their heads around.
If it’s a case of your significant other simply not wanting to travel anywhere, ever, then you should use this in your appeal and stress how much seeing the world means to you. After all, your partner not wanting to travel puts you in a somewhat difficult situation.
It isn’t fair that you should have to let go of your ambitions based on his or her indifference toward seeing the world. If you can respect your partner’s disinterest in travelling, your partner should respect your desire to travel. Be very careful, however, not to turn it into a diatribe whereby you vent spleen on never being allowed to do what you want.
You’re asking to do something wholly independent and mature and you should treat the situation as such. Arguments are bad news.
Consider a compromise.
It might also be a good idea to suggest a compromise. Exactly what sort of compromise is up to you and your darling dear, but it could help the situation. Agreement with your travel request shows a deep respect for your personal space and a huge amount of trust in your commitment to the relationship. Therefore, if your partner should ask for something in return, be flexible.
If you feel that your relationship is a particularly strong one, say so. Tell your partner that you wouldn’t be asking this if you didn’t already feel completely confident in the strength and trust between you. It’s arguable that time apart can strengthen a relationship , whether it needs it or not. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right?
Careful with this one though, as you don’t want to insinuate in any way that your fondness is somehow lacking.
A few years back, I decided that I was going to go to Thailand for a month, get away from my day job, and write.
My girlfriend at the time completely understood and off I went. We kept in constant contact during my time away and when I returned home a month later, our relationship was stronger than it had ever been.
That girlfriend is now my wife.
Relationships are hard work and each one is different. Just because yours doesn’t resemble others doesn’t mean that it’s somehow less serious or committed. However you do end up handling things, give yourself credit for being up front about your desires.
Life’s too short to hold off on doing the things that matter to you.
For more on the ups and downs of relationships on the road, check out How Being Apart Can Strengthen a Relationship , or How To Travel with your Fiance and Come Back Together .
12 common hand gestures in the us that will insult people in other countries, an overnight train is the best way to experience canada's winter wilderness, i wore the same shirt for an entire 12-day trip. and it magically stayed clean., 10 luxury train rides in the us that are worth splurging on, how to get the new 90-day vietnam tourist visa, discover matador, adventure travel, train travel, national parks, beaches and islands, ski and snow.
Travel Stories: When your partner doesn't like to travel, but you do!!!
Travelling is refreshing, informative and a brilliant way to self-discovery. Few people travel to get away from their mundane, regular schedules. It is a break that one deserves! After months and years of struggling at work, travelling helps you to get back your sanity!! Few other people takes to travelling when they feel lost and are looking for answers.
But what does one do when their partner doesn't like to travel? I know, this sounds crazy, but many people do go through such harsh life situations.
Read on to find out what to do when you are stuck in a dilemma like this one:
1) Negotiate : Well, this is a tricky one but also the most sustainable. Have a conversation and try to understand the reason behind why he/she doesn't like to travel. If it's because of budget, you can always suggest to maintain a travel fund where you can start saving for your next vacation together. You can also offer to take them out. The trickiest part is when he/ she thinks travelling is a waste of money! But there always must be some thing or the other that he/she likes to do. You can offer to do one thing that the person likes and in turn ask him to join you for your next trip. In this way, both of you would be in a win-win situation.
2) Connect with your long-lost friends/ family members: The easiest way out of this problem is to connect with your long-forgotten friends. School, college, post graduation - any of them that you had ignored all these years. Connect with them and apologize for going MIA for all this time (I'm hoping they will take you back ????). And what better way to catch up on the lost years than travelling together?!!
3) Travel Solo: The ultimate guide to self-discovery!! You must have put extra hours at work for that promotion, those sleepless nights spent putting the toddler to sleep, providing for the family all these years, well, you don't need more excuses to take that vacation you have always been planning. Travelling solo has its advantages - it frees your soul in a way family trips never can. Spending time with yourself will help you to clear your mind and make you more focused in life. And you can always strike up a great conversation with strangers while travelling solo.
4) Join a Travel group: If travelling solo is not an option, you can always sign up for one of the group tours organised by a travel company. In that way, you can always visit your favorite destinations, without getting into the hassles of meticulous planning. The company will take care of your visa, hotel reservation and sight-seeings, all you need to do is hop on to the flight (and pay them, of course!)
5) Turn to your bff: Look no further, your bff to the rescue. Take the much awaited vacation with your best friend. This will not only give you memories to cherish for a lifetime, but will also save you the hassles of connecting with old friends and explaining why you could not stay in touch with them, or travelling with strangers or travelling solo. Also, since both of you will be at the same wavelength, you need not worry about what to see, where to eat or where to party!
6) Dump him/ her: Just kidding!!!
Hope this helps you in planning your next vacation with bae, without getting into the arguments and fights!
For more travel stories, please visit: https://www.thetraveltreasures.com
- Our Experts
How to Live Abroad
- The World's Best Places to Retire
- Travel—How, When, and Where to Go
- Real Estate Overseas
- Earn, Bank, Diversify, Invest
- Retirement Planning
- How to Move Out of the U.S.
- All Destinations
- Editor's Choice
- Daily e-Letter
The Reluctant Spouse: What to Do When Your Partner Doesn’t Want to ...
We first met Laura and Joel (not their real names) a decade ago on the shores of Mexico’s Lake Chapala , where they were vacationing. He was retired and she was happily working as a network television sales executive. He wanted her to quit her job and move to Mexico with him and she was having none of it.
A few months later, Laura accepted a prestigious promotion and assignment in Hawaii. Joel supported her decision, but made it clear he would not be moving there. They would live apart while she worked for two years in Hawaii. Then, she promised, they would move together to Mexico. Secretly, she hoped he would give up this ‘crazy idea.’
Life doesn’t always work out the way you hope it will.
Joel returned to Mexico by himself and bought a house. Laura wasn’t happy that he was forcing her hand. But true to her promise, she joined him in Mexico when her assignment in Hawaii ended.
As you might imagine, moving from a fast-paced job to retirement in Mexico no less, where she knew no one… Laura was bored out of her mind. She didn’t like the house that Joel had bought so she set about remodeling it. A year later, she took a job selling real estate and found she was very good at that. One day she suddenly realized that despite her misgivings, she was in love with Mexico and her new life there.
Luckily for Laura and Joel, things worked out. But what happens when partners don’t want the same thing? You want to retire overseas , for instance…to that sublime stretch of beach or sun-dappled colonial village…but your significant other says “no way, Jose.” Whatever can you do?
You can leave copies of International Living magazines in strategic places, of course…like in your beloved’s briefcase or lunchbox, on the nightstand, in the bathroom…
You can talk up the excitement, the fun, the romance of it all. Explain (with graphs and charts if need be – and I’m only half kidding) how much farther your retirement nest egg will go if you move where the cost of living is lower. (A word of advice: taking your partner to an International Living event will definitely help overcome anxieties and plant seeds about the benefits of living overseas.)
From hard-won experience, here are a few pointers that may help persuade your reluctant spouse or partner to make your dreams their dreams:
Involve them in the planning
This is a big decision. And it deserves careful thought and planning by all involved. Talk, talk and talk some more about it. Make sure you’re both as informed as possible and involved in the decisions about where to move, how to live, and so on. Spend time together and separately perusing online forums and other resources. If your motivation is economic, make sure you both understand what’s going on with your financial situation.
Compromise with a ‘no strings attached’ test drive
Nothing is scarier than cutting the ties completely. If your partner is reluctant to do that, consider giving the new life a test drive. Before you sell your house or buy that one-way ticket, rent an apartment in the new locale for three months or more.
Don’t sugarcoat the challenges
Discuss the difficulties you’ll face along the way, and work together on solutions. For instance, you may want to take some foreign language classes before your move. Try out voice- and video-over-Internet (VOIP) technologies so you can easily stay in touch with family and friends. If you’re retiring, do some budget planning. There will still be unexpected challenges, but by working together, problem-solving can be part of the fun.
Help ease the transition
Once you’ve moved, take an active approach to learning as much about your new community as you can. Be sure your partner has an opportunity to meet other expats and locals with similar interests. These days, you can do this in advance of your move through online blogs, forums and websites. And keep busy--this is the perfect opportunity for you both to try something new.
Remember that attitude is everything
When challenges do arise, maintain your sense of humor and look on the bright side: this experience will likely strengthen your relationship. (And it will give you great stories to tell later.) So support one another and make a point to have as much fun as possible on this adventure.
As Joel told me not long ago, “I knew Laura would like it, I just had to help her overcome her objections.”
And if that hadn’t happened? If Laura hadn’t fallen in love with Mexico? As we’ve said in these pages many times, don’t think of your move as a one-way ride or as the last move you’ll ever make--if it doesn’t work out, you can always move on or go back home.
The Opportunity of a Lifetime – Grab It
If you or your partner are new retirees, having so much free time on your hands may be difficult. So get busy.
Some ideas to get you started:
Walk, run, work out, try yoga, play tennis or golf. Your body and mind will thank you for it.
Take classes/take up a new hobby
You’ll find online classes for a wide range of subjects. Or find a friendly local who offers art or music lessons. Now’s your chance to do something you’ve always wanted to do.
There are many rewarding ways to give back to your new community.
Can’t give it up? Start a business your new community needs, get a job teaching English, or take on Internet-based work such as freelance writing, computer programming, or website development.
- Main content
A Gen Z private-jet pilot shares what her job is like and why dating can be tough
- Eva Lucas started her formal pilot training at 19 and got her commercial license at 21.
- Lucas, now 23, is a private pilot flying a Gulfstream jet across the world.
- She says the money is good and she's traveled to Peru and South Korea, but dating is hard.
While some Gen Zers grapple with the 9-to-5 grind in their first entry-level jobs, Eva Lucas pilots private jets across the globe for the ultrawealthy and VIPs.
The French-born pilot said she went from a novice flyer at 19 to a private-jet pilot making $60,000 in three years.
From getting invited backstage to a celebrity DJ's concert to missing out on holidays, Lucas told Business Insider about the highs and lows of being a young pilot.
It doesn't have to take years to become a private-jet pilot
Lucas moved to Florida with her family when she was 14. At 17, Lucas told BI she was passionate about travel. Lucas's parents suggested she take an introductory flight to see if she'd like to learn how to fly at a local flight school.
"It was then I knew flying was what I wanted to do," Lucas told BI.
Lucas started formal training when she was 19 after getting her green card. She earned her private-pilot license in four months. By 21, she also secured her commercial license, she told BI.
Training for a private-pilot license costs between $6,000 and $20,000, and a commercial license costs similar amounts, according to Indeed's guide to becoming a pilot .
It normally takes pilots longer to get their licenses, she said, but she took daily lessons.
"During commercial training, I had a two-hour lesson every morning and then would work in my family's pastry shop in the afternoon," she said. "Most people fly maybe two or three times a week. So it depends on how much you want to get it done."
Lucas worked for a year teaching flight lessons at a flight school in Tampa before she was offered a job as a private-jet pilot. She spent another month learning how to fly a Gulfstream jet with her new company before she took her first official flight as a private pilot.
The starting salary is solid
"Salaries start around $60,000," Lucas said, though this can vary depending on the size of the jet and the pilot's role in the cockpit.
Career pilots can make hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the average US pilot salary in 2022 was $225,000.
The schedule is 20 days on, 10 days off
Being a private-jet pilot is not a typical 9-to-5. Instead, Lucas works on a 20-10 schedule where she's on call for 20 consecutive days and off for 10.
Those 20 days can comprise a couple of flights with long layovers in international destinations, or there could be many smaller flights across the US — it depends on the client.
"During those 20 days, I have to be ready to fly whenever the client wants," Lucas said. "If we have a pop-up trip, they will call us and we will have to go to the airport."
Some flights are added to her schedule in advance, but it often changes. Lucas may fly for multiple clients during those 20 days since the company charters its airplanes to anyone.
The company covers all her travel expenses
When Lucas is on the job, all her accommodations and daily meals are paid for, regardless of the destination.
"We stay at Marriott hotels and get $75 a day for food if it's domestic and $125 a day if it's international," Lucas said. "I love to treat myself and enjoy nice places with my coworkers. Clients don't invite us to dine in with them but could invite us to see their show or the reason for their travel."
She's flown to South Korea, France, Colombia, the UK, and the Caribbean.
"If a flight is very far away from the US, we have a tendency to stay there until the passengers want to come back," Lucas said. "For example, I have stayed eight days in Lima, Peru."
If the destination is in the US or the Caribbean, Lucas said, they will fly to drop off the passengers, stay overnight, and then pick up another client.
She's been invited backstage with famous DJs
The profession comes with its share of glamorous experiences, Lucas said. Her favorite was when she had to fly a famous DJ to a concert in Denver.
She was invited backstage for the show and got to see the performance for free.
"We had VIP passes and everything," Lucas said. "And then the following day, we just flew him back."
Dating can be tricky as a private-jet pilot
The job's demanding schedule can make maintaining a personal life challenging, especially since she lives in Tampa but has to fly to the aircraft's location and be gone for 20 days at a time.
"I was previously in a relationship with a fellow pilot, and it didn't work out," Lucas said. "Dating can be tough, although now I'm dating a captain in my company, which works well due to our similar routines."
"There are days when I find myself in less exciting places, like a quiet town in Ohio, and I miss my family," Lucas said.
But the hardest part is working during holidays.
"That's a popular time for clients to fly private. So unless you have seniority, you have to work those days," she added. "I miss Christmas, my family's birthday, and am not able to meet up with my friends for occasions."
As far as time off goes, Lucas can request days off, but they're not guaranteed and more difficult to secure during the holidays.
"It's all about adjustments," she said. "The first year was a bit weird, but then you get used to it."
Correction: November 23, 2023 – An earlier version of this story misstated the pilot's name as Eva Marcus. Her name is Eva Lucas.
Watch: Millennials are willing to spend $5000 or more on vacation, making them the age group that spends the most on travel — but Gen Z isn't far behind
- Auto Insurance Best Car Insurance Cheapest Car Insurance Compare Car Insurance Quotes Best Car Insurance For Young Drivers Best Auto & Home Bundles Cheapest Cars To Insure
- Home Insurance Best Home Insurance Best Renters Insurance Cheapest Homeowners Insurance Types Of Homeowners Insurance
- Life Insurance Best Life Insurance Best Term Life Insurance Best Senior Life Insurance Best Whole Life Insurance Best No Exam Life Insurance
- Pet Insurance Best Pet Insurance Cheap Pet Insurance Pet Insurance Costs Compare Pet Insurance Quotes
- Travel Insurance Best Travel Insurance Cancel For Any Reason Travel Insurance Best Cruise Travel Insurance Best Senior Travel Insurance
- Health Insurance Best Health Insurance Plans Best Affordable Health Insurance Best Dental Insurance Best Vision Insurance Best Disability Insurance
- Credit Cards Best Credit Cards 2023 Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards Best Rewards Credit Cards Best Cash Back Credit Cards Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards Best 0% APR Credit Cards Best Business Credit Cards Best Credit Cards for Startups Best Credit Cards For Bad Credit Best Cards for Students without Credit
- Credit Card Reviews Chase Sapphire Preferred Wells Fargo Active Cash® Chase Sapphire Reserve Citi Double Cash Citi Diamond Preferred Chase Ink Business Unlimited American Express Blue Business Plus
- Credit Card by Issuer Best Chase Credit Cards Best American Express Credit Cards Best Bank of America Credit Cards Best Visa Credit Cards
- Credit Score Best Credit Monitoring Services Best Identity Theft Protection
- CDs Best CD Rates Best No Penalty CDs Best Credit Union CDs Best Jumbo CD Rates Best 3 Month CD Rates Best 6 Month CD Rates Best 1 Year CD Rates Best 18 Month CD Rates Best 2 Year CD Rates Best 3 Year CD Rates Best 5 Year CD Rates Best 10 Year CD Rates
- Savings Best High-Yield Savings Accounts Best Free No-Fee Savings Accounts Simple Savings Calculator Monthly Budget Calculator: 50/30/20
- Checking Best High-Yield Checking Accounts Best Checking Accounts Best No Fee Checking Accounts Best Teen Checking Accounts Best Student Checking Accounts Best Joint Checking Accounts
- Mortgages Best Mortgage Lenders Best Online Mortgage Lenders Current Mortgage Rates Best HELOC Rates Best Mortgage Refinance Lenders Best Home Equity Loan Lenders Best VA Mortgage Lenders Mortgage Refinance Rates Mortgage Interest Rate Forecast
- Personal Loans Best Personal Loans Best Debt Consolidation Loans Best Emergency Loans Best Home Improvement Loans Best Bad Credit Loans Best Installment Loans For Bad Credit Best Personal Loans For Fair Credit Best Low Interest Personal Loans
- Student Loans Best Student Loans Best Student Loan Refinance Best Student Loans for Bad or No Credit Best Low-Interest Student Loans
- Business Loans Best Business Loans Best Business Lines of Credit Apply For A Business Loan Business Loan vs. Business Line Of Credit What Is An SBA Loan?
- Investing Best Online Brokers Top 10 Cryptocurrencies Best Low-Risk Investments Best Cheap Stocks To Buy Now Best S&P 500 Index Funds Best Stocks For Beginners How To Make Money From Investing In Stocks
- Retirement Best Gold IRAs Best Investments for a Roth IRA Best Bitcoin IRAs Protecting Your 401(k) In a Recession Types of IRAs Roth vs Traditional IRA How To Open A Roth IRA
- LLC Formation Best LLC Services ZenBusiness LLC Review LegalZoom LLC Review Inc Authority LLC Review Incfile LLC Review
- Services Best E-commerce Platform Best Website Builders Best Point-of-Sale (POS) Systems Best Registered Agent Services Best Credit Card Processing Companies Best Credit Card Readers for Small Businesses
- HR & Payroll Best Payroll Software Best Free Payroll Software
- VPN Reviews Best VPNs ProtonVPN Review ExpressVPN Review CyberGhost VPN Review Private Internet Access VPN Review
- Manage Topics
- Visual Explainers
- Abortion news
- Climate Change
- Vertical Storytelling
- Corrections Policy
- College Football
- High School Sports
- H.S. Sports Awards
- Sports Betting
- College Basketball (M)
- College Basketball (W)
- For The Win
- Sports Pulse
- Weekly Pulse
- Buy Tickets
- Sports Seriously
- Sports+ States
- Entertainment This!
- Celebrity Deaths
- American Influencer Awards
- Women of the Century
- Problem Solved
- Personal Finance
- Small Business
- Consumer Recalls
- Video Games
- Product Reviews
- Airline News
- Experience America
- Today's Debate
- Suzette Hackney
- Policing the USA
- Meet the Editorial Board
- How to Submit Content
- Hidden Common Ground
- Race in America
Best Personal Loans
Best Auto Insurance
Best High-Yields Savings Accounts
Best Credit Cards
Blueprint is an independent, advertising-supported comparison service focused on helping readers make smarter decisions. We receive compensation from the companies that advertise on Blueprint which may impact how and where products appear on this site. The compensation we receive from advertisers does not influence the recommendations or advice our editorial team provides in our articles or otherwise impact any of the editorial content on Blueprint. Blueprint does not include all companies, products or offers that may be available to you within the market. A list of selected affiliate partners is available here .
Nationwide pet insurance review 2023
“Verified by an expert” means that this article has been thoroughly reviewed and evaluated for accuracy.
Published 5:00 a.m. UTC Nov. 28, 2023
- path]:fill-[#49619B]" alt="Facebook" width="18" height="18" viewBox="0 0 18 18" fill="none" xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg">
- path]:fill-[#55ACEE]" alt="Twitter" xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" width="19" height="15" viewBox="0 0 19 15" fill="none">
- path]:fill-[#202020]" alt="Email" width="19" height="14" viewBox="0 0 19 14" fill="none" xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg">
Editorial Note: Blueprint may earn a commission from affiliate partner links featured here on our site. This commission does not influence our editors' opinions or evaluations. Please view our full advertiser disclosure policy .
Maximum annual coverage
Deductibles, reimbursement percentage, what you should know.
Nationwide offers pet insurance plans for different needs and budgets. Unlike most pet insurance companies that limit coverage to dogs and cats, Nationwide will cover a wide range of avian and exotic pets. Nationwide also offers existing insurance customers the chance to save 5% on pet insurance. You can save another 5% if you insure more than one pet.
Types of coverage.
Nationwide pet insurance offers three options for accident and illness coverage.
Modular pet insurance plan
- Deductible: $250
- Annual coverage limit: $5,000 or Unlimited
- Reimbursement percentage: 50% to 90%
The Nationwide Modular pet insurance plan lets you choose an annual coverage limit and the option to add benefits like wellness coverage, pet behavioral coverage and prescription pet food and nutritional supplement coverage.
- Annual coverage limit: Unlimited
- Reimbursement: Up to a set amount for each covered condition
Nationwide’s Major Medical plan includes coverage for accidents and illness, plus some hereditary conditions. You can also add the pet wellness plan to this policy. The plan reimburses up to a set amount for each covered condition, with an unlimited annual maximum.
- Annual coverage limit: $10,000
- Reimbursement percentage: 50% or 70%
The Whole Pet plan reimburses up to $10,000 per year on eligible veterinary expenses for accidents and illnesses. Congenital and hereditary conditions are also included.
You can add a Nationwide wellness plan to the Modular and Major Medical plans, but not the Whole Pet plan. It includes coverage for wellness exams, flea and heartworm preventives, blood work, urine testing, and vaccinations. In some states, you may be able to buy a standalone pet wellness plan that provides up to $500 in annual wellness benefits.
Additional riders available
There are no additional riders available through Nationwide.
Nationwide offers the following discounts:
- Employer/organization association discounts.
- Existing customer discount (5%).
- Multi-pet discount (starting at 5%).
Nationwide pet insurance reviews
Checking Nationwide pet insurance reviews from current and past customers can help you decide if it is the best pet insurance for your needs. After 234 reviews on Trustpilot, Nationwide has an excellent rating of 4.1 out of 5 stars.
While some provide glowing reviews of customer service, others are frustrated by ineligible expenses and denials due to pre-existing conditions . It’s important to read your policy thoroughly — especially for exclusions — to understand what’s covered and what’s not. When in doubt, contact Nationwide directly.
- 24/7 access to veterinary experts through the VetHelpline app.
- Nationwide customers get a 5% discount on pet health insurance.
- One of the few companies with coverage for avian and exotic pets.
- Preferred prescription pricing at Walmart and Sam’s Club.
- 14-day waiting period.
- Limited coverage choices, such as only one deductible option of $250.
- Wellness plans can’t be added to some policies.
About Nationwide pet insurance
Nationwide pet insurance coverages, what nationwide pet insurance doesn't cover, nationwide pet insurance discounts, how nationwide compares to other pet insurance companies.
- Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Nationwide has been providing property and casualty insurance for almost 100 years. In 2009, Nationwide acquired Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), expanding its coverage options to include pet insurance. National Casualty Company underwrites Nationwide’s pet insurance policies in all states except California. In California, the underwriter is Veterinary Pet Insurance Company.
If you’re looking to bundle all your insurance policies with one company, you may want to consider Nationwide. It offers a 5% discount to policyholders with at least one other line of insurance with the company. It’s also one of the few pet insurers that offers coverage for birds and exotic pets.
Paw protect, average monthly cost for dogs, average monthly cost for cats.
Modular pet insurance plan with wellness is the most comprehensive pet insurance plan you can buy from Nationwide. The coverages available include:
- Accidents, like broken bones, sprains and poison ingestion.
- Behavioral exams and treatment.
- Common, chronic and serious illnesses.
- Congenital and hereditary conditions.
- Dental illnesses.
- Diagnostic testing such as CT scans, MRIs and X-rays.
- Prescription medication, supplements and therapeutic diets.
- Preventive and routine care, like vaccines and wellness exams.
- Veterinary exam fees.
Other Nationwide pet insurance plans include:
- Major Medical plan. This plan includes coverage for accidents, illnesses, cancer and some hereditary conditions. It also has an option to include wellness coverage. Rather than offer a maximum annual limit, it has defined annual benefits per condition. This plan may be best for pets without congenital and hereditary conditions.
- Whole Pet plan. This type of policy includes coverage for accidents and illnesses as well as hereditary and congenital conditions. Though this plan extends coverage to include more conditions, it does not allow you to add the wellness plan to your policy.
- Wellness plan. This plan provides coverage for routine care such exams, vaccinations, flea and tick treatments and nail trimmings. This plan is available as an add-on to some policies, and you may be able to buy it as a standalone policy in some states.
- Avian and exotic pet coverage. Avian and exotic pet owners can purchase a Whole Pet plan that will cover accidents and illnesses for many exotic pet groups, including small mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles.
You may also be eligible to buy a Nationwide pet insurance plan through your employer.
Nationwide members have access to Pet RX Express, which offers discounted pricing for prescriptions at Sam’s Club and Walmart pharmacies. The pharmacy counter can also process your prescription insurance claims directly.
Nationwide provides for many types of pets including:
- Guinea pigs.
- Potbellied pigs.
- Sugar gliders.
Some pets are excluded from coverage, such as:
- Any animal that requires a license, permit or registration with the state or federal government.
- Endangered or threatened species.
- Hybrids of domestic and wild/non-domesticated specials.
- Pets that are kept on display or in flocks.
- Poisonous or venomous animals.
As with all pet insurance companies, there are some things Nationwide pet insurance doesn’t cover, like:
- Congenital or developmental disorders.
- Cosmetic procedures.
- Credit card or bank fees.
- Pre-existing conditions.
- Record copies or access fees.
- Waste disposal.
- Wellness, preventive or routine care (unless specified under a wellness plan).
More exclusions may apply, depending on the plan you buy. For instance, Nationwide excludes routine and preventive care unless you buy a plan with wellness coverage. Likewise, the Whole Pet plan will cover hereditary and congenital conditions, but those are limited under the Major Medical plan.
Some pre-existing conditions that are curable, like ear infections, vomiting, and diarrhea, may not be excluded forever. If your pet’s medical records show the condition has been treatment- or symptom-free for at least six months, there may be coverage in the future.
Nationwide offers a few pet insurance discounts you can use to save money on coverage:
- Employer/organization association discounts.
- Multi-pet insurance discount (starting at 5%).
Nationwide pet insurance will cover neutering and spaying if you buy a policy with a wellness plan, or a standalone wellness plan where available.
For instance, if you buy Nationwide’s Major Medical Plan, there is no coverage for spaying or neutering. If you don’t add the wellness plan, it would not be covered.
To cancel your Nationwide pet insurance policy, log into your online account or notify the company in writing. In some states, a Nationwide pet insurance policy may include a “Free Look Period” or Right to Exam and Return a Policy rule. If you wish to cancel and have not filed a claim during that period, you can get your premium payment back.
Yes, some Nationwide pet insurance plans, like the Modular pet insurance plan, will cover end-of-life expenses, such as euthanasia, cremation, paw prints and burial fees. However, not all plans will cover these costs. It’s a good idea to always check your policy or contact an agent to verify coverage.
Blueprint is an independent publisher and comparison service, not an investment advisor. The information provided is for educational purposes only and we encourage you to seek personalized advice from qualified professionals regarding specific financial decisions. Past performance is not indicative of future results.
Blueprint has an advertiser disclosure policy . The opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Blueprint editorial staff alone. Blueprint adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. The information is accurate as of the publish date, but always check the provider’s website for the most current information.
Mandy is an insurance writer who has been creating online content since 2018. Before becoming a full-time freelance writer, Mandy spent 15 years working as an insurance agent. Her work has been published in Bankrate, MoneyGeek, The Insurance Bulletin, U.S. News and more.
Jennifer Lobb is deputy editor at USA TODAY Blueprint and is an experienced insurance and personal finance writer. Jennifer served as an insurance staff writer and editor at U.S. News and World Report and deputy editor of insurance at Forbes Advisor. She also spent several years covering finance and insurance for various financial media sites, including LendingTree and Investopedia. For nearly a decade, she’s helped consumers make educated decisions about the products that protect their finances, families and homes.
Best pet insurance in New Jersey (NJ) in November 2023
Pet Insurance Mandy Sleight
Outlook for pet insurance in 2024
How to make a pet insurance claim
Best pet insurance in Florida (FL) in November 2023
Best pet insurance for multiple pets of 2023
How much does pet insurance cost in November 2023?
Pet Insurance Jennifer Simonson
Best pet insurance in Colorado (CO) November 2023
Best pet insurance in California (CA) November 2023
Best pet insurance in Texas (TX) in November 2023
Best pet insurance in New York of November 2023
Best cheap pet insurance of November 2023
10 Best pet insurance companies & plans of November 2023
Pet Insurance Kat Tretina
Survey: Nearly 40% of dog owners chose pets over parenthood
Pet Insurance Heidi Gollub