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How to travel solo while you’re in a relationship | A couple of travel makers

Tips on how to survive a long-distance relationship... even if it's only a short trip.

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Stef

I went on a holiday without my husband last year. It made me realise that the longer we're together, the more I miss him while I'm away. (Don't judge, please).

Now this isn't the first time I've explored the world without him. While we were dating I moved to Germany for six months and I don't recall it feeling this difficult.

But these solo trips aren't going to stop anytime soon. And if you're like me and find yourself missing your significant other when you're on a work trip, weekend with mates or solo break then here are a few tips to survive the distance that have worked for us.

Stef and D

We're Stef and D, a pair of married jetsetters. Together, we've visited 55 countries and we're determined to see even more – all while working full-time and paying off a mortgage. We count our dollars at home and while away and we're here to share our tips on how you can travel on a budget.

New blog posts every fortnight on Mondays here. Follow us: @acoupleoftravelmakers


1. Schedule in some chat time

This is my number one sanity trick, especially when you're living together and suddenly realise the lack of presence and communication. You'll know what I mean when you have a hotel room all to yourself with the TV your only form of entertainment.

Young girl leaning to kiss laptop on kitchen counter.

You can Skype, FaceTime or simply just message. What's important is keeping this communication constant. Daily works for us but whatever you're used to in your relationship is a great benchmark.

When chatting, discuss what you did in the day and put in that effort to talk about even the little things. But try not to get naggy. You want to spend the time connecting not stressing or starting a fight.

Stef on a train

2. Keep busy

The worst thing you can do is have spare time to kill… and then wish they were around to keep you company. This works both ways, by the way.

On holidays, keeping a packed schedule is a great way to keep distracted. If you're travelling with friends and family this'll probably be a cinch. That is, unless you don't get along in which case build your own itinerary without them. Finder's things to do guide is a great place to start.

If you're the one at home use this time to make plans to see friends, do some overdue housework or work on a project. Again, the worst thing you can do is have spare time to kill AKA miss them.

Tourist taking picture of Eiffel Tower with smart phone, personal perspective view, Paris, France

3. Send photos of your day

If they're at home living their everyday they may be feeling a bit of FOMO. And conversely you may be missing creature comforts like friends or activities.

Include them in your travels by showing them where you were in the day or by taking a photo of something you think they'd enjoy such as a dish at a restaurant or a hilarious shop name.

Get them to do the same so you can keep up with the goss at home.

Close-up of a woman hands offering a present

4. Buy them gifts from your trip

I'm not sure about you, but whenever I go on holidays alone I see things that my other half would love. Like, everywhere. It's like when someone mentions they've met a lot of Mikes and all of a sudden everyone you meet is a Mike.

But back to gifts. Buying them is a nice reminder that you were thinking of them.

Plus, buying the right gifts, you know the ones that put that smile on their dial, can also cement your relationship as it's a sign that you know them inside and out.

A florist pushing a buzzer while delivering a bouquet of flowers to one of her customers.

5. Surprise them with gifts at home

They'll never be expecting a present delivered to their door when you're halfway across the world. It could be a bouquet of flowers, a new video game, a handwritten letter or a postcard.

Then again, you can always up the ante and buy them a surprise trip to visit you.

Flat lay of travel accessories such as plane, passport and calendar

6. Determine how long you're going to be apart from the start

Part of a healthy long-distance relationship is knowing how long it'll be before face-to-face contact. Before you take off, determine when they'll visit or when you'll return home, whether it be forever or as a short trip before heading off again.

Providing these guarantees means you're both committed to the relationship. It's also a nice something for both of you to look forward to.

When I went to Germany, he promised he'd visit and that we'd return home together. It was a nice compromise so we could share some travels.

Hand girl showing a heart

7. Be honest

If you miss them, say it. If you don't want to chat one day, they should know you're not in the mood.

Also, try not to get angry if they say they're preoccupied. You're enjoying your travels and they shouldn't have to put their life on hold because you're not around.

What are some of your tips? Let us know in the comments below.

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