Travelling as a Couple: THE REALITY
While we both wouldn’t have it any other way, constantly travelling as a couple is like travelling with two different minds. We thank God we agree on many things, but arguments still arise, of course. This is where things start to get a bit challenging. Living together at home is one thing but going to a new place, trying to communicate with people (speaking a totally different language), solving problems that arise spontaneously and fighting stamina is another. What we’re trying to say is that the relationship alone is a challenge in itself, even more, when constantly travelling.
Travelling as a Couple on a Budget
Thankfully, travelling on a budget was a choice that we equally agreed on. It was for one simple reason, really – we couldn’t do it in another way. Our budgets were never going to magically increase. What we could attempt is doing more with the same amount. That’s travelling on a budget for us in a nutshell.
We rarely argue on finances, food or places to visit. However, it’s still a fact that on some days, one of us wants to explore the city and make the most out of the day (him!) while the other wants to just chill somewhere quiet (her!). Due to this, we always focus on flexibility. We used to plan our trips to every hour but to state the truth, that started to cause stress.
Nowadays, we just mark the places and activities we’d like to do on our maps. This way, in the morning or last thing in the previous night, we take a look and plan our day.
We’ve learnt how to be spontaneous in this regard because after all, every new day brings with it a different mood… and in our case, every new day brings two of them!
Those little mishaps…
It’s not the first time that we argue just because little things go wrong. It could be missing a bus or a train, the tremendous heat that makes us feel tired, exhausted and weak, not having enough sleep… the list where things can go off is never-ending! But then, we try to get on the same page again, that of embracing bad times and each other. It’s not the first time something negative occurs, but then we may end up stumbling upon a breath-taking view or experience… like for example on the first game of Ajax’s 2018/2019 season, after which they went on to end up Champions League semi-finalists.
We love stadium hopping!
Charlotte – No, actually HE does, but this is one of the things I give in just because he loves it so much!
We had no idea we were to end up in Hattem, over 100km away from where we were lodging in Amsterdam. On the day, AFC Ajax were scheduled to play two friendlies. The first was against the Danish Nordsjalland in Putten while the second game against Steaua Bucuresti in Hattem. Since Putten was the closest and had the earlier kick-off, we opted to go there. A chain of events happened – it’s like faith didn’t want us to go!
So, first we boarded the Intercity train instead of the sprinter. Basically, the difference between these two is that the Intercity only stops at the major stations, and skips the ones in the towns. Obviously, that made us miss our stop and end up very far from our destination. We decided to board the sprinter train now going in the opposite direction and get out at the originally planned stop. As soon as we boarded the train, an announcement was made that the train would be up to an hour delayed. The reason was that a group of people had jumped onto the rail tracks, refusing to move. Now, what are the odds of that?
We were gutted, as by the time the train left, the game would have kicked off. Then, we remembered about the 19.00 hrs kick-off game at Hattem. A train ride and a short walk later, we arrived at one of the coolest stadiums we ever stepped foot in. Supporters were all scattered around the pitch, sitting down on the hilly part of the field. The atmosphere was amazing and the coolest bit of all – this turned out to be the game which Ajax decided to field their first team, as the game vs Nordsjalland was dedicated for their U/23s.
Always Keeping a ‘One Team’ Mindset
Then, there are those instances where we both need a moment alone. Although it doesn’t quite frankly happen often, we just decide to spend a morning or an afternoon with our personal selves, when it does – should it be pampering, watching some football on tv or in a stadium, window shopping or just quietly sipping on a cup of coffee. It’s very important to understand one other and respect each other’s feelings because at the end of the day, we’re ONE team.
Travelling as a couple has thought more how to work together as a team. We’re nowhere near relationship professionals but from our own experiences, communication and compromise are the key principles that make travel couples work! Being with the other person 24/7 means getting to know each other on a very deep level. So, hiding emotions and who you really are will only make it worse.
While we’re hopeful for years of adventure to come, travelling up till now has always challenged us but also brought us much closer in our relationship. Whenever we’re speaking of memories we have with each other, the topic always finds its way around travelling. We can’t wait to continue piling up more post COVID-19!