13 ways marriage changes the way you travel | A couple of travel makers
Being a carefree and independent traveller is just a little more difficult these days.
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We've been married for a year now – and looking back at the way I used to travel feels a little surreal. I couch-surfed, hiked around Europe with a backpack, flew on the cheapest flights out of the most inconvenient airports and took painfully long bus rides to save a few bucks.
Now I'm older, married, working full-time and paying off a mortgage… and I do hardly any of the above.
We're Stef and D, a pair of married jetsetters. Together, we've visited over 50 countries - though we're determined to see even more. All while working full time and paying off a mortgage. We count our dollars at home and away and are here to share our tips on how you can travel on budget.
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So, what's changed? Here's my rundown of what to expect when marriage takes over your wanderlust:
1. You're less likely to travel without each other
Sounds mushy, but it's true. You'll consider your partner when making travel plans and invite them along for the ride because, you know, you might miss them.
Or you might feel sad that they're missing out.
Or you might wish they were there to share a moment, experience or view with them.
You know them feels.
2. Your work (and not your bank account) will dictate when you travel
With more work comes more responsibility and you'll quickly find yourself working travel around your colleague's leave dates, major work events and that dreaded forced annual leave.
It'll become less a matter of when the cheapest flight out is and more a matter of when you can get away. Friday night flights will become a thing.
3. You spend a tedious amount of time booking your travel
Some couples work on the dynamic that one person organises everything. Others may both love to travel, so both want to have an input in the itinerary.
You know what that means: discussion, research, discussion, consultation, discussion, confirmation and then booking.
4. You don't count your dollars (as much)
When you're scraping the bottom of your bank account, every cent counts.
When you earn a full-time salary and have more disposable income (read: his), you become more willing to splash the cash.
5. But you will still grumble about how poor you'll be from travelling
Welcome to adulthood where that crippling debt of a mortgage weighs in on all your financial decisions. Then there's land tax and home insurance on top of those electricity, gas, water, car insurance, rego, Internet, Netflix and phone bills that you always forget about until they smack you in the face.
But you know what? You need a holiday. So take it.
If there's only one tip we leave for you here today, it's that if you do have all these financial responsibilities then spreadsheets for your travel expenses go a long way. Have a shared one you can both look over with approximate costs for flights, hotels and activities so that you're both aware of what's happening. And so you can both see what the potential total is and decide whether it's in your budget.
6. You book hotels instead of hostels
When you're dating, a shared hostel room would be acceptable, though not preferred.
Now that you're married, it's all private rooms in hostels at the worst and 5-star hotels at the best.
7. You start using wheeled baggage
Backpacks and duffle bags might have been the luggage of choice when you were young and travelling solo, but marriage will change all that.
You've now acquired double the stuff, gifting you with the excuse to pack everything into more generously sized wheeled luggage. It's also an excuse to dump your bag at the check-in so you can walk light and fancy free through the terminal with nothing more than your personal items.
8. You acquire more reasons to travel
Birthdays, anniversaries, visiting family and partying with friends – on both sides. Whatever excuse you can muster to book that ticket beyond carpe diem you will take.
In the time we've been married we've travelled for a wedding, a hucks (combined hens and bucks), his birthday and our wedding anniversary.
9. You travel to places you never considered before
Two minds have two travel ambitions. Sometimes they'll cross. Other times they'll be as different as chalk and cheese. Compromises will be made and new destinations will be discovered.
That's just the way these things roll.
10. You start reconsidering more dangerous places
We're focusing on the big F soon. That is, family. Because of this, places that have been struck by viruses such as zika have been struck off our lists.
While that might not stop you from travelling to them, you will have to wait a while until you can start trying if you want to produce a healthy bub. For us, that's not worth it.
11. One of you will repeat offend (a destination, that is)
If one of you has travelled more than the other then I've got some bad news: you'll probably wind up returning to those same churches, museums, parks and ruins that you did before.
You'll also have to muster all your patience to allow your partner to enjoy them to their fullest.
12. You eat in restaurants, like, ALL THE TIME
It's intimidating eating in a fancy restaurant all on your lonesome, so most of the time you might have found yourself making a beeline for a fast food joint or grabbing food on the go.
As a couple, and one that loves eating out, unless we're after a quick bite we'll go out of our way to tuck into a quality meal and take in the atmosphere.
13. Finally, you'll end up coming home with more souvenirs...
….but most likely not ones that you buy for yourself.
I'm a sucker for buying things for him that I know will put a smile on his face. And he's a sucker for prancing things he knows I'll like in front of my face… and then buying them for me when I'm not looking.
Married and love to travel? Let us know in the comments what's changed for you (good or bad).
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