I spent the better part of my early twenties in a relationship with someone who wasn’t exactly keen to travel. Having done some traveling as a kid, he was less excited about seeing foreign destinations than I was. He also had different priorities regarding where he wanted to spend his money — he had some pretty expensive hobbies that took a lot of his spare cash. Travel simply wasn’t a priority for him.
For this reason, I didn’t do a lot of traveling from ages 20-25. We took a few weekend trips together, but for the most part, my wanderlust remained unfulfilled until I got out of that relationship.
The question I ask myself these days, is WHY?
I had a passion for seeing other places, and always have. I dreamed of exploring mountains on the other side of the world, indulging in the foods and arts of other cultures, and seeing sights I’d only seen photos of. Yet, because I was in a relationship with someone who didn’t want to travel, I didn’t travel either.
I think there are many others who fall into the same rut I did. When you’re in a relationship, you tend to see yourselves as a package deal. Unfortunately, this can sometimes be your downfall. It’s perfectly okay to have different hobbies, and do things separately. I knew this on the surface, but I didn’t walk the walk.
No matter what the reason, sometimes our lovahhhhs aren’t as stoked about travel as we wanderlusters are. Here are a few tips for dealing when your partner isn’t down to travel with you:
Plan a girls/boys weekend away.
Taking some time away with a group of friends can be the perfect way to satiate your wanderlust, while still keeping peace in your relationship. Most significant others will understand that it’s important for you to have alone time with your friends…and if they don’t understand that, it’s probably time to ditch them anyway 😉 If they’re not thrilled about travel, they’ll likely be relieved that you have great friends to share the experience with instead.
Whisk them away.
If your S.O.’s primary reason for not wanting to travel is budget, and budget isn’t a concern for you, treat them to a trip. Of course, this isn’t financially feasible for everyone. However, if it’s within your means, it may spark a little wanderlust in them, and pave the way for future trips as a couple.
Plan a solo trip.
If your significant other doesn’t like a restaurant you like, does that mean you should never eat there? NO. You can go on your own, or grab takeout. Travel is just the same. There’s always a way.
There’s a bit of negative stigma that comes with taking a solo trip when you’re in a relationship. Throw the stigma out the window and do what’s right for you!
Approach the subject carefully with your S.O. and explain why travel is so important to you. Take care to not give the impression that you’re trying to get away from them, or meet someone new. You’re traveling solo, not traveling single.
It’s not about going alone, it’s about getting to do something that you love, despite the fact that you two have different interests.
Assess the relationship.
While this can be a difficult step, look at the reasons your S.O. cites for not wanting to travel. Are they trying to watch their spending right now, but would like to travel more in the future? Are they nervous to travel because they’ve never been outside of the country? Or do they simply not find travel enjoyable?
If you’ve got the wanderlust bug, travel is likely a high priority for you. Thus, the ideal partner for you is someone who has a case of wanderlust, too. Or, at least, someone who finds occasional travel enjoyable.
If your partner really isn’t down for travel, this may cause some problems down the road. Will you get restless if, ten years from now, you’re still having the “can we please take a trip this year” battle? It’s good to know their reasons upfront, and decide early on if the relationship is right for you.
While wanderlust isn’t the reason my last relationship ended, it definitely would have caused some problems and the same old arguments down the line, had we stayed together. I know now that if I find myself in another relationship, I should be with someone who finds travel enjoyable, and preferably, someone who shares the wanderlust gene. It’s a way of life. ☺
Have you ever had an S.O. who didn’t enjoy travel, or one of your favorite hobbies? Share your tips in the comments below!