Recently, we posted etiquette and travel tips to consider before visiting museums. Today, we’re revisiting the topic with an added twist: how can you best travel in groups? While written for an intended reader who is in a couple, most of these tips could apply to any individual or small group of travelers.
Traveling in groups with people you enjoy can, often times, be a delightful experience. Any extended period spent with other couples, families or friends can also pose challenges. Here are a few tips to consider while traveling in groups:
- Identify the top 3 must-do things on your trip, together. If it’s an extended trip with multiple days/destinations, you may want to identify this each day. This will help you figure out the most efficient routes for all parties, so everyone gets to see and do what they desire.
- Walk on the right or left – not both! When your group walks together, try to walk in single or double file, and pick a side of the sidewalk or path (but don’t take up the whole street – and don’t hold hands). Remember, also, that your pace on vacation may be slower than locals who are moving quickly; letting people get around you is key.
- Learn basics of the local language. If you’re traveling to a country where your native language isn’t spoken, try to learn basics in the language you’re planning to inhabit. Essentials include ‘hello,’ ‘good day,’ ‘where is the restroom?’ ‘do you speak English?,’ and ‘thank you’. Basics show respect to native-speakers, and will take you far when you need directions or other help in a rush! You may also consider hiring a guide to help you get around easily.
- Discuss meal basics beforehand. Decide how you want to split bills; things can get complicated in larger groups, especially if some travelers order drinks and desserts and others don’t. Learn tipping customs in advance, too, and at buffets, take a small plate at a time. You can always go back for seconds, but restaurants can’t put back uneaten food.
- Take a day to yourself if you need. Sometimes, this is the best thing on a trip with too much noise and hustle. Lie by the pool, go for a hike by yourself, or just spend an afternoon in bed with a book. This can do wonders for helping you to appreciate your fellow travelers the next morning.
Have you traveled with other couples, or with an entire family? What tips can you share for traveling together?
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