Hate Traveling With Your Significant Other? You’re Not Alone.

A new survey revealed that a quarter of travelers do

January 31, 2024 4:19 pm
A couple sitting i a cave outpost on a mountain that looks like a heartr. It's not always rainbows and butterflies when you travel with a partner.
It's not always rainbows and butterflies
Getty Images

My favorite person to travel with is a friend I very seldom talk to over the course of a year. We swap birthday wishes and check in occasionally, sure, but, for the most part, our very limited exchanges typically start off with a text that reads something to the effect of, “What are you doing the last week of March? Do you want to go to Mexico City?”

One thing leads to another, and we’re soon reunited in some far-flung destination where we’ll spend a week chumming it up like no time has passed at all despite the fact that, once the week is up, we’ll return to our respective lives and likely not speak again for months. I love him all the more for it. You see, there’s an unspoken understanding between us. An inherent comfortability. We travel well together — no small feat considering that travel can be hard. And traveling with someone you aren’t meshing with can be downright hell.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: why travel with someone you don’t mesh with? Maybe it’s for work. Or maybe you’re on a 20-person bachelor trip (there’s always at least one douchebag high school friend that’s been grandfathered in on every bachelor/bachelorette trip, right?). But, moreover, maybe it’s someone who, for all intents and purposes, you should mesh with, but don’t…and, unfortunately, you often don’t know that you don’t until you’ve had the opportunity to travel with them.

I’m talking, reader, about significant others.

According to new data from Hotels.com, a quarter of travelers (24%) find their significant other’s travel-specific icks so embarrassing or annoying that it spoils the trip entirely. In some cases, 33% to be exact, they’ve even gone on to break up with their significant other because of their travel habits. Another 88% confessed that their partner’s travel behavior makes them want to take fewer trips together. Per the survey, the biggest annoyances were:

  • “Doesn’t let me eat or drink from the mini bar because it’s too expensive.”
  • “Keeps the room a mess.”
  • “Brings their own pillow or bedding with them.”  
  • “Unpacks immediately.”
  • “Always forgets room key and assumes I have it.”

Albeit relatively minor offenses within the context of crimes one person can commit against another while traveling (so what if they can’t resist the urge to unpack?), icks can be hard, if not altogether impossible, to bounce back from. “I absolutely hate traveling with my husband,” one Reddit user, who seemingly never bounced back, once posted to the r/Marriage subreddit. “He’s not a fun traveler at all! He doesn’t like the same things as me, complains and we just have completely different travel ideas.”

However, while not traveling well together can be indicative of incompatibility, as evidenced by the Hotels.com survey, it doesn’t have to be. It’s entirely true that everyone has their own travel style. One person might like to plan everything down to a science, while the other might like to leave things up to chance. One might be a thrifty traveler, while the other likes to ball out. In fact, relationship experts claim it’s even healthy to travel without your partner, whether it be in favor of a trip with a friend or a solo endeavor! Regarding the former, I’d recommend getting yourself a trusted travel friend like mine.

All of that said, if the person you’re traveling with — friend, partner or otherwise — doesn’t “let” you eat or drink from the minibar…run.


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