At some point in our lives we might feel the pull to getaway and explore new countries and new cultures. Anyone who has travelled will know what an amazing experience it can be, but what happens if travelling means leaving your other half behind? Perhaps your boyfriend of girlfriend has work or family commitments, or simply doesn’t feel the inclination to travel. Is it worth putting off travelling, or can long-distance relationships work?
Really it depends on your dynamic as a couple and how long you have been together. If you have only been together a short time, something as drastic as going away travelling for months on end could be a deal breaker for your relationship. If you think this might be the case, think about whether this person will still be waiting for you when you get back and if you feel the relationship is worth putting your dreams on hold for.
For couples who are in a long-term relationship, the decision to travel can, in some ways be easier, and in other ways a lot harder. You may have a partner who is supportive and willing for you to go away and do your own thing safe in the knowledge that they will still be there when you get back. On the other hand, making the decision you leave your partner, albeit only for a few months, can be very difficult to deal with.
If you decide to take the leap, there are things you can do to make your long-distance relationship work. In this situation, communication is key. Even in the initial planning stages, get your partner involved so they can see where you will be travelling. During your trip, make sure you keep them updated with postcards and emails. The Internet is an invaluable tool for keeping in contact. You might want to consider investing in a small laptop so you can Skype your other half, however you’ll probably find that many of the hostels have Internet access. Perhaps you could go one step further and set up a blog so that friends and family can track where you are and read about your travel tales?
Keeping your partner involved every step of the way is important however, try not to go overboard. Remember that this is a time for you to be independent and, more importantly, to enjoy yourself! There’s nothing worse than being stuck in front of a computer checking your emails when you could be out there seeing the sights. So, try and keep a balance.
Maintaining a long-distance relationship is tough, but travelling is one of those life experiences which is a shame to miss out on. If you can persuade your partner to go with you then great, but if it’s not their cup of tea then don’t worry. If they know that it’s something you really want to do then there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be supportive of your decision.
Travelling and long-distance relationships can work, but only if both parties want to make it work!