The Ultimate Guide to Travelling with Friends

travelling with friends

Updated On: November 26, 2023 by   Maha YassinMaha Yassin

Imagine packing your bags and travelling around the world with a group of your best friends! It is a dream that all young people have— to skip town and discover the wonders of the world with their friends by their side; what’s better than that? Having adventures, eating weird food, and exploring cities and small towns is best done with your besties. It might take you years to organise such a trip, but once it’s done, you will forget all about the tiring process.

Travelling with friends sounds like the perfect idea on paper. Your friends are probably your age or at least close, you have the same general interests, and you get along just fine most of the time. However, many people are faced with the harsh challenges of organising a trip with friends and ending their lifelong friendships and fantastic trip plans over the stress. Since we do not want this to happen to you, we are going to give you our best tips on how to plan a trip with your friends.

How to Survive Travelling with Friends

travelling with friends
How to Survive Travelling with Friends

Your friends are great, and you get along just fine. You have weekly dinners and outings, and you talk on the phone or text all the time. You have been friends for years, and there is absolutely nothing that can change that! Right? Wrong. A poorly organised trip can be the axe to your long-life friendship!

Unfortunately, many people have lost friendships after a couple of days or weeks away together. Opinions clash, expectations don’t line up, and some people end up never speaking again! All of these horrors are avoidable, though. It just needs a little bit of planning and some laying of rules before the trip.

We can help with all of that! Here are our best tips for travelling with friends.

Talk About Your Trip Expectations

Every single person has their own expectations of what a fun trip is like. Some people like to have a full itinerary with daily activities and sightseeing. Other people like to relax at their hotels, swim in the pool, and maybe go out to eat every couple of days. Some people travel to shop, others like visiting historic sites and museums. 

All of these preferences are valid and can make a great trip! However, they are all different and can’t possibly be done at the same time. Before you plan your trip, make sure you and your friends are on the same page about what you expect from this trip. Travelling with friends means there is a group of people all with their own expectations. You must talk clearly and make sure you all have close expectations of what your trip will look like so you don’t get disappointed later.

Here are some questions to start the conversation:

  • What is the one thing you’re looking forward to on this trip?
  • Do you want a relaxation trip or an adventurous one?
  • Is this an adults-only trip or one with kids?

Discuss Your Budgets Clearly

When you travel alone, you plan your trip according to your budget. You know exactly how much you can spend, and you plan accordingly. However, if you travel with friends without planning a collective budget, you’re asking for trouble! Some people might want to eat out every night and go on expensive trips, while others are travelling on a budget and can’t overspend. All of this must be discussed.

Talking about money, even with friends, can be awkward and uncomfortable. However, it is essential to make sure everyone in your group has the exact expectations when it comes to spending. Your budget will determine where you stay, what you eat, where you go, and what activities you’ll be able to do. Try to plan something that is within budget for everyone and make sure they stick to it as much as possible.

Here are some questions to start the conversation:

  • How much money are you allocating for this trip?
  • Are we staying in a hotel/motel/Airbnb?
  • How many times a day/week are we going to eat out?
  • Do we have the budget to visit multiple cities?

Be on the Same Page About Packing

You might wonder, “Why can’t everyone just pack whatever they want?” Well, because how much you pack will determine many aspects of your trip. If some of your friends are over-packers, that means it will be very hard to travel to different cities with all that luggage. If you plan to stay in motels or shared rooms, then packing light is the best way to go as well.

This conversation will not be complicated once you already have a plan of what you are going to do on your trip and where you will be staying. Just make sure everyone knows the limitations of packing, especially if your plane tickets have regulations for bags as well. Organising packing can also allow you to share some items so you don’t all have to stuff your bags to the brim.

Here are some questions to start the conversation:

  • How many days is the trip going to be?
  • Are we travelling by plane or by train?
  • Are we going to visit multiple cities? Or move a lot in general?
  • Can we share some items so we don’t all pack everything?

Discuss Your Daily Routine

No matter how much time you spend with your friends, you probably know very little about their daily routines, but once you travel together and stay at the same place for an extended amount of time, you will have to get acquainted with their way of life. To avoid clashes on what time to wake up or whether to have breakfast or skip it, talk with each other.

Discuss your daily routines and the things you plan to stick to even while travelling with friends. If some of your friends are early risers and others like to sleep late, then maybe you will need to adjust your activities. Do you need to eat your meals on time, or do you not mind skipping lunch to do more sightseeing? Make sure to discuss all of this with your friends so you’re clear.

Here are some questions to start the conversation:

  • What time do you usually wake up in the morning?
  • What time do you go to sleep at night?
  • Do we need to plan our meal times, or are we flexible?

Decide on a Group Leader

Who is going to lead these discussions? Who do you trust to make a final decision when things hit a stale end? Who will be responsible for making sure everyone is on the same page? It’s a hard job, but it must be done. While travelling with friends, a leader must be chosen—someone who is trusted and diplomatic.

The group leader’s job doesn’t have to be a nightmare. After discussing your plans and coming to an agreement, the leader will just make sure everything goes as planned. Sometimes opinions clash, and you just want someone to make a choice; that is when the leader steps in. A group without a leader is just a mess, and things will be bound to go wrong. So, pick a leader!

Plan Some Alone Time

Okay, after all this planning and adjusting to make sure all your friends are happy and your trip is lovely, you will need a break. Don’t feel guilty about planning some alone time, even while travelling with friends. Every member of the group will actually need that “me time” to just enjoy themselves on their own.

Alone time is an excellent opportunity to do the activities no one wanted to do with you. You wanted to visit a museum, but everyone else thought it would be boring? Do it on your own. You wanted to try unique restaurants no one else wanted to go to? Go eat as much as you want! Or maybe you have family or friends in this country, and you would like to pay them a visit? Just go for it; it’s your alone time to do whatever you want!

Be Ready for Changes in Plans

Things rarely go exactly as planned when we are travelling. A new place means new experiences and new people, and you need to be open to that! If your friends suggest something that was not on your original plan, give it a go! You might be surprised what you will find.

Sticking to plans is excellent, and we know your type-A personality would love that! However, while travelling with friends, things can change all the time. One minute, you are hiking with your friends. The next, someone spotted a fabulous hidden restaurant and suggested you stop. Or maybe a friend got sick, and now you have to spend a couple of days in the hotel just watching Netflix and chilling. It’s all cool, don’t stress yourself!

Be Communicative and Own up to Your Mistakes

The secret to any good relationship is communication. Throughout your trip, make sure to communicate with your friends openly. If something happens that you do not like, let them know and try to find common ground. If you’re mad at someone, do not let it fester throughout the trip and talk to them to try and smooth things over.

If you do something wrong or ruin a plan, just apologise. Owning up to mistakes saves friendships; trust us! You don’t want this trip to bring out the worst in you. In fact, this trip is meant to bring you closer and give you memories you will remember for the rest of your lives. So be communicative and talk to your friends about what you’re thinking.

The Best Things About Travelling with Friends

travelling with friends
Solo travel is all the rage, but travelling with friends has its perks as well.

Travelling with friends is excellent! As long as you do the work and plan ahead, your trip will probably be one of the best trips you have ever been on. No matter your age or gender, getting to spend time away from your friends is different than going on vacation with your family or even solo. Here are some of the best things about travelling with friends:

  1. Travelling with friends is safer than travelling alone. You always have someone you can count on to have your back.
  2. Travelling with your friends helps you forge stronger bonds. Nothing screams lifetime friendship like sharing a bathroom for a week!
  3. You and your friends will get to know each other on deeper levels. For some reason, being away from your familiar environment opens you up to share more about your life.
  4. Travelling helps us experience new things, but it is always more exciting doing that with your friends! Have you always been too lazy to hike? Take a group of friends! It will be the best experience ever.
  5. Travelling with friends is much cheaper than travelling alone! Renting a house, renting a car, or getting group discounts, everything is cheaper when shared.
  6. You can always stuff your extra shopping in your friend’s bag! Travelling in a group means there are lots of bags to share, and you will never run out of space or have to buy a new bag.

The next time you are planning a trip of a lifetime with your friends, make sure to check this list for tips! Whether you’re travelling around the world on a grand adventure or having a relaxing staycation in a luxurious hotel, it’s always better to travel with friends! Just make sure you plan ahead so that you come back as friends as well!

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