Things To Know Before Backpacking Across The Country With Your Boyfriend
Are you thinking about backpacking across the country—across any country—with your partner? Well, look at you, you quirky, adventurous, budget-conscious couple. It’s wonderful that you want to go out of your comfort zones, and experience totally novel things together! A lot of young couples (and old ones!) get the itch to rough it, skip the pricey hotels, get to know locals better, and backpack their entire trip. Every couple that does it says that it changes their relationship drastically—sometimes for better, and sometimes for worse. It’s not for everybody, and that’s okay. And maybe it’s exactly what you need. Here’s what you should know before backpacking across the country with your partner.
You won’t get enough sleep
You won’t sleep in hostels, on couches and in RV’s the way you do in your own hotel room (or even motel room). You’re going to be a bit sleep-deprived, so think about that before you make that nasty comment on the tip of your tongue; you may just be cranky!
You’ll learn what kind of guest he is
You’ll be houseguests a lot. Whether you’re couch surfing or staying in a bedroom in an Air Bnb when the host is home, you’ll be houseguests. Now you’ll learn what kind of houseguest your partner is. Does he bring a gift? Is he gracious? Does he make conversation with the host or treat them like a hotel owner?
You’ll have to get comfortable fast
For example; bathrooms won’t be as readily available as they are when you stay in nice hotels. You’ll have to become very communicative about when you need to stop to use the bathroom…for any reason.
You may put on weight
It’s not very easy to eat healthily when you backpack across a country. You won’t have access to your own kitchen for a long time and may pack on a few. Make sure you’re secure enough in your relationship for that to happen!
You’ll learn how resourceful he can be
Can he negotiate the hostel room price? Can he get a food truck to give you an extra tray of fries if you write about it on your travel blog?
You’ll see how open-minded he is
If you stay with strangers everywhere you go, you’ll encounter every type of personality. You’ll see how your partner deals with them all—does he get tense around people who are a little too open? Or does he laugh it off and enjoy it all?
You’ll see how you handle money together
You’ll have to keep to a strict budget together. Can you do it? Or will there be arguments because one person wants to spend the funds on an excursion and one wants to save them for shopping?
You’ll see if he can truly disconnect
Can he truly, fully disconnect? Can he stay away from WiFi and phone chargers for days at a time? Because that may happen. How much of his personality depends on those things?
You’ll only have each other
You need to know how to pick your battles if you’re going to do this. If you don’t have that on lock down, and you pick every battle, you’ll quickly feel that you’re traveling with your nemesis instead of your best friend.
Some people are conservative
If you’re really covering the whole country or at least most of it, you’ll encounter some hosts that don’t allow unmarried couples to sleep in the same room. Yup!
Having sex will be difficult
Crashing on couches and staying in hostels isn’t very conducive to having sex. So have it when you get the chance! Because you don’t know when the next one will come.
You might be scared
There can be some scary moments when you backpack. You may find yourself on shady busses late at night. You may encounter some characters who frighten you and harass you specifically as a woman. You’ll really see how your partner comes to your side in these situations.
You’ll see how much he wants to learn
You’ll meet people with all kinds of stories to tell. Does your partner engage and ask questions? Or does he just wonder when it’s time to get the next beer or burger? Is he really trying to expand his horizons?
You can’t pack much
Like, really. Think about the smallest amount of things you’re comfortable packing, then cut that in half. That’s probably what you can bring. Can your vanity take the hit?!
You’ll be forever closer
If you get back without any fights…okay, without many fights,…you’ll never be the same again as a couple. You’ll feel like you can take on anything. You’ll feel like you know each other through and through. You’ll feel like your bond is unbreakable.