What it’s really like backpacking for a year as a couple. 

Truthfully, I was worried about travelling, finally taking off leaving my job and saying goodbye to friends and family was one thing but the one thing that worried me the most was how we would deal as a couple spending twenty four hours together. A terrible thought crept in at times; what if travelling causes us to break up?

It was a risk we were both willing to take as the urge to travel was so strong. I researched many travel blogs on other couples travelling the world, sometimes for years so I had faith we would survive. Now six months in, we have spent almost everyday together. Here is the reality, it’s not always been plain sailing. We have bickered at times, which we never did back home. The bickering was mostly at the beginning of the trip under stressful travelling conditions, such as getting lost in China and arriving late at night after twenty plus hours travelling, with no accommodation booked.

Upon reflection of these incidents, I believe they occurred as we had not yet figured out our roles. It has taken time but it is now crystal clear. While I generally choose our destinations, sort out activities, accommodation and flights, Tim takes the lead on checking in at the airport, completes all the driving and takes the lead navigating on the underground systems. Together we work out directions using maps and public buses. We both carry our own backpacks and do our own laundry. We decide together on where to eat and I try to take a lead on our budget and haggle where needed. We both try to ask people for help where needed. Knowing our roles prevents us from resenting one another.

We have also gained a huge amount of respect watching each other face and meet certain challenges. Tim is better at haggling and I’m getting better at the map reading, I’ve even driven the scooter a few times.

The best part of travelling together is knowing we have instant help and support. When I was sick with food poisoning and thought I would have to go home, Tim looked after me. Having our own space is very important. Tim will chill in our accommodation working on his drawing and painting and I might head to the beach for the day, read, write and play my guitar. We ensure we give one another bathroom privacy, look for accommodation with balconies and we both have headphones. This allows us personal space. It’s important for us to speak to other people separately so we don’t simply end up talking to one another and of course we both keep up with people back home. Thankfully we have made loads of friends on our journey. Finally we both ensure we communicate honestly if we are bugging one another. It makes me happy that I’ve experienced this life changing adventure with the most important person to me so the risk has been worth it so far. I’ll be doing a follow up blog at the end of our trip so look out for this read. 

5 thoughts on “What it’s really like backpacking for a year as a couple. 

  1. Same for us! 24/7 together and giving each other space is exactly what we do!!! We also left everything to come away and now don’t want to live back in the UK. Travelling opens up the mind and gives you life perspective (especially as a couple!) so we will figure out where will be home (not there yet 😂)
    Love blogging about the places & experiences we’ve seen / had, so whilst I do that mainly, my other half plays the guitar on a balcony (if we are lucky enough to find the right accommodation)
    Great to see kindred spirits doing the same 😜 Enjoy the rest of your trip!!

    Liked by 1 person

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