Choosing who you go on vacation with should not be taken lightly. Whether it is your spouse, another couple, a group of friends, or with another family, who you decide to travel with can determine the entire tenor of your trip. Don't screw this up. When you're roaming with a bad travel partner, it is pretty easy to spot. For those who may need more help, avoid travel buddies who say things like...
Ugh, this person always has to be in charge. They don't want you to suggest or dictate anything they do on vacation. Whether they put in 20 hours of research, or just like to fly by the seat of their pants, it is going to be THEIR pants you fly by. Not yours. Got it?
The complainer. Hate this person. They don't like the accommodations or the location or the food or how difficult it is to exchange money. All they want to do is go home. Boo.
The sloth. This person barely says anything. Or does anything. All they want to do is lay around and sleep. We're on an adventure buddy! Let's get out there!
The cousin of the sloth, TV guy just wants to stay in and watch CNN, or BBC, or ESPN Deportes, or whatever other obscure channel your TV might receive. If you have full cable, that's even worse. Now they don't have to miss an episode of True Blood (this person always watches True Blood, count on it.)
You're on vacation, probably in a foreign location, or maybe even a domestic location you just don't know that much about. Ask for advice! Ask a local or consult TripAdvisor. Just do your damn research. Traveling with this cocky person will leave you confused and probably heading down an incorrect street or six.
Pizza? In Dubai? Don't be a picky eater. If you're traveling the globe, let your appetite and tastes travel too. Eat the local cuisine and experience something new. A terrible traveling partner just wants pizza for every meal, or macaroni with butter. Food allergies notwithstanding.
Blaming someone else for a bad day of vacation, or a bad meal, or getting lost is a quick way to never traveling together again. Unfortunately things can go wrong ("I need a vacation from this vacation!" - said every Mom ever) but you need to keep your chin up and work with your travel buddy or buddies to make the best of every situation. Buck up soldier.
Travel is all about breaking out of your comfort zone. Challenging yourself to do new and exciting things that your "normal" self would never dream of doing. Don't go on vacation with someone if they are going to shut down everything you suggest because it's not "normal" to them.
No judgements man. We're all going to do some weird stuff on this trip. Maybe the zipline gives you a serious wedgie or the sake makes you kind of cry and talk about how you hate being away from your cat. It's all good! Traveling can be an amazing experience. I want my time away to bring me closer to my traveling partners, not make me feel weird and awkward.
No matter who you're with: have fun, be yourself, explore, and pack at least one new outfit you can't wait to show off...