37 Reasons why it’s good to have a travel buddy

Much has been said about the benefits of traveling solo as reflected by the numerous articles written about it. I do agree that traveling alone is good for oneself and I recommend for people to try it at least once in their lives. I myself have done it and find it a very fulfilling experience. On the other hand, traveling with someone can also be fun and beneficial. Surely it has its pros and cons, just like traveling solo has its own advantages and disadvantages. However, when you are able  to find a good travel buddy, traveling can become a more rewarding experience (note that you can always ask your buddy for alone time when you feel like doing so during your trip). So here are some reasons why it’s better to travel with a companion.

  1. Things can be cheaper when you travel with someone. Sharing the costs (cab fare, meals, accommodation, renting a car, private tours etc.) means you pay less.
  2. Someone to serve as your wing(wo)man during a night out.
  3. Someone to take care of you in case you get sick. During one of my overseas trips, I saw a guy taking care of his sick travel buddy and I thought it was nice of him to do so. Imagine getting sick while travelling alone and you are so weak you couldn’t even get up to buy your own medicine or get your own food.
  4. Someone to do silly poses with (because doing them with someone makes the situation look less crazy, and when there are two foreigners doing crazy poses, it’s easier to convince people that it’s just your country’s tradition).
  5. When your reliable and trustworthy travel buddy is the one taking your solo shots, it means that a) you don’t need to use a tripod or ask a stranger to take your photo, therefore, less worry about your camera getting stolen; b) you won’t be shy to ask for retakes just to get the exact framing you want, therefore ensuring that your face isn’t blurred, your head doesn’t get cut-off and that the whole (not half) of the Leaning Tower of Pisa (or any other iconic structure) is well-framed.

    My travel buddy's signature solo shot. Photo credit: PiaB

    My travel buddy’s signature solo shot. Photo credit: PiaB

  6. Someone to giggle with when you could not contain yourself after seeing half-naked hunky men roaming around the mixed dorm. Sure you can do this alone, but again, doing it with someone makes you look a lot less crazy (I guess).
  7. Someone to validate/negate whatever you are feeling. For example, in one of our trips I had a feeling that we were being followed by a guy, though I wasn’t sure. So when my travel buddy told me that she felt the same thing, it confirmed that I wasn’t just being paranoid. True enough, the guy was stalking us.
  8. Someone to answer your question “why am I doing this again?” while hiking a difficult terrain.
  9. Someone to motivate you to continue walking even if you are dead tired from carrying your 20+ kilo backpack, when all you want to do at that moment is sprawl on the sidewalk and take a quick nap right there and then.
  10. Someone to scream with when you get overwhelmed by the picturesque scenery your eyes are feasting on. And someone to back you up when you start hyperventilating after repeating the words “waaah it’s so beautiful” for like 100 times per minute.
  11. Someone to lend you money after losing all of it from pickpockets, and someone to keep you sane thereafter. It happens. Trust me.
  12. In case you lose your camera or memory card during your trip, or copies of your past travel photos get deleted from your computer, having a travel buddy gives you the advantage of being able to acquire copies of photos taken from that same trip.
  13. Someone to put things in perspective when it seems that misfortunes keep piling up one after another during your trip and you cannot think straight anymore.
  14. Someone to tell you to calm down and stop freaking out when you get hounded by agents/touts/vendors who just obviously want to scam you. Someone to remind you that you are still in a foreign land and that you need to be careful not to react offensively if you want to get out unharmed.
  15. For cases when the reason for your travel is to get over a heartbreak or to get through grief, your travel buddy can help cheer you up when the blues start kicking in again.
  16. Someone to serve as a witness in case someone attempts to kidnap you.
  17. If staying in dorms, someone to look over your belongings when you need to take a quick trip to the bathroom but are too lazy to put them in the locker or there is no locker at all. Or someone to watch over you and your belongings while you sleep at the airport awaiting your connecting flight  (note: it’s important that you take turns!).

    Sleeping at the airport after missing our flight. Photo credit: PiaB

    Sleeping at the airport after missing our flight. Photo credit: PiaB

  18. Someone to cry with when you miss your flight and don’t have any money left to buy that new ticket.
  19. Someone to laugh with when you find yourself in an embarrassing situation.
  20. Not caring if you unintentionally sleep and drool on their shoulder while traveling on an overnight bus or train (On the other hand, if you are traveling alone and you happen to sit next to an attractive stranger, you may want to try intentionally sleeping on their shoulder, minus the drooling part of course!).
  21. Someone to stop you when you are about to buy something impractical or to coax you into buying it (depending on what is relevant for that particular situation).
  22. Someone to lend you clothes or share toiletries when you lose yours along the way.
  23. Someone to fuel your sense of adventure when you feel wary about doing something daring, and conversely, someone to stop you from being so daring when danger seems imminent and you are totally blinded by your sense of adventure.
  24. Someone to sing-along with you when suddenly feel the urge to sing a song which requires two or more different voices, for example, The Lion Sleeps Tonight (good song choice when you are stuck in a jungle and need to calm yourself).
  25. You have better chances of defending yourselves against an attacker (human, animal or otherwise).
  26. Someone to confirm that the person sleeping next to your bed in an exclusive female dorm is actually a guy (True story. Don’t ask me how the guy ended up there).
  27. Someone to confirm your suspicions that you stink and need to shower ASAP or that you need to air your stinky shoes outside. Definitely better than strangers telling you that you stink.
  28. Someone to make sure you won’t be taken home by a serial killer when you get drunk at a bar.
  29. Someone to prod you when it’s time to swallow your pride and finally ask for directions when you are really lost.
  30. Your pre-travel planning is more bearable when you do it with someone, especially when you have to do it till late night for several nights.
  31. Researching and remembering travel infos can be overwhelming. In this case, two heads are obviously better than one.
  32. When traveling to places that have the reputation of being not so safe, it is easier to appease your mom knowing that her daughter/son is traveling with someone she can trust.
  33. It somehow gives your parents peace of mind when they know that they have another person to contact and confirm that you are still alive (especially when your phone becomes unreachable for some reason).
  34. Someone to back up your story when you narrate to another friend about this crazy, unbelievable thing that happened to you during your trip.
  35. If traveling with a person you are seriously considering for marriage, you get to know more about their idiosyncrasies. You then find out if this is the person you really want to spend the rest of your life with.
  36. Someone to empathize with your post-travel anxieties as you grudgingly transition from vacation mode to back-to-reality mode.
  37. Because it’s more fun when you travel with someone (who you get along with).

Have you found a good travel buddy yet? Share this with them!

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2 thoughts on “37 Reasons why it’s good to have a travel buddy

  1. Love this – I had the best travel buddy – In Asia we lived off Oreo’s and I would always eat my packet in one sitting, she would tease hers out. So two days later when I had none and she still had half a packet she would give me some… which I would then eat at once! – thanks for the nostalgia!

    Like

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