We, Alex & Michael, have been dating for over 3 years now, have lived together for about 2 years, and have had the opportunity to travel as a couple to about 13 countries together since we started dating. We aren’t yet married, but to say the least, we know each other.
Marriage requires a TON of work, and with travel, we have had an opportunity to work out many of the issues we’ve had. We have had an opportunity to find where we best complement one another and how we can best work as a team.
Through our travels we have come up with a number of reasons why we believe… you should travel as a couple before marriage!
You See Someone At Their Worst
If you were to describe marriage, most of you would describe it as a partnership, right? When you travel as a couple you are absolutely guaranteed to face challenges and be forced to work together as partners to overcome this adversity.
You will see one another at your absolute best but also at your absolute worst.
Trust us, if you’re not able to work as partners while traveling you will fail at marriage. Travel before marriage will challenge and educate you while simultaneously creating lifelong memories.
There is no way that you will be able to travel the world together, take yourself out of your comfort zone, and truly thrive as a couple when you aren’t able to build up one another and overcome challenges.
You Create Lifelong Memories
The memories that you and your partner will create on your travels before you’re married are unique and will last a lifetime. Dating life is obviously quite different than married life, and your adventures are likely going to be as well.
Go do something adventurous and new.
Take that trip to Oktoberfest. Take that trip to Amsterdam Music Festival. Go tan nude together on a beach in Mykonos and then party until the sun rises.
But don’t let marriage stop you either. If you’re reading this and you’re married, don’t think at all that it is too late! Plan that honeymoon you never took or book a trip for your anniversary. If you have kids, yes, travel might be a bit more difficult and expensive, but it isn’t unfeasible. Family vacations are some of our most fond memories that we will hold with us forever.
Create those memories for your families as well.
You Become a Real Team
We are absolutely overjoyed by the fact that we have had the opportunity to travel the world quite extensively together. Aside from the relationship benefits that our experiences have provided, we also have had the opportunity to be a bit selfish!
Think about it. Obviously this isn’t a universal truth, but most couples tend to have children shortly after marriage. Once you have kids, your travel life will change for a minimum of 18 years.
Traveling with a baby is a challenge, traveling with kids can be both exhausting and expensive, and traveling with a teenager can be quite interesting as we all know from our own personal family vacations from a time period where we were struggling to find our identities.
You remember, that weird period where you felt too cool to walk next to your parents or felt embarrassed by your family?
Determine If You’re Ready for Marriage
If you’re in a relationship that you’re at all doubting, go travel as a couple. You may find that you’re able to face your challenges together, strengthen your relationship, and spend a life together that benefits each other mutually.
Or, you may find that you’re not a perfect fit for each other. And that is fine.
Better to know now than to find out down the road. Both of us have had relationships that have failed… and thank God because that ultimately led to the life we have built together.
Bill Murray once said (and we are paraphrasing), “If you love a woman, travel around the world with her for a year. If, when you return home, you still love her, marry that woman”. The point here is that if you’ve traveled the world with someone for a year (or any significant period of time) you know that individual inside and out.
You know what makes that person tick. You know what makes that person happy. You know what makes that person absolutely enraged with anger. If you don’t already know, you’ll discover this person’s weaknesses and strengths alike.
And above all, if you are still able to love someone when and respect him or her for their imperfections, you should have a pretty fair chance at a successful relationship.
Travel is absolutely not something any couple should wait for marriage to do. The experiences you will have, the memories you will create, and the foundation that you will build for your marriage are beyond valuable.
So go! Take the trip you and your significant other deserve.