Feb 19

Travel with a Stranger

Traveling with a stranger may be a good option if you can’t find family or friend to travel but you don’t want to go with a larger group.  I highly advise you get to know your travel partner’s travel style to make sure you’re compatible.  There are many ways you might find a travel partner this way.  Maybe it’s a friend of a friend, maybe you use an online match (for example, travel companions at the Lonely Planet thorntree), or maybe you just meet on the road.

Advantages:

  • It’s great to share amazing sites, events, and meals with a new friend.
  • Safety in numbers
  • This can be one of the least expensive ways to travel if you plan right.  With a travel partner you can split costs like taxis, tour guides, car rentals, and hotel rooms.
  • If you find you’re not compatible, you may be able to separate with no hard feelings.  It’s not as easy when you’re traveling with family or friends.
  • You might make a lifelong friend.

Disadvantages:

  • If you travel with the wrong person, you can have a miserable time.
  • You need to be careful and selective when traveling with strangers.  I’ve had really good luck but I heard a story about three young solo female travelers that joined forces.  As they were nearing the end of their travels together, two of them woke up one morning to find that the third travel partner had quietly stolen their money and electronics and left in the night.
  • You have to compromise so everyone gets a chance to do what they want.

Have you ever traveled with a stranger?  What do you think about it?

If you’re unsure, consider taking my questionnaire.

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