While traveling alone can be fun, I personally love to travel with friends and family from time to time as well. The problem with traveling with a group is that most of the time, planning falls to just one person. It’s important that somebody take charge because if nobody does, the trip is almost guaranteed to fall apart. If you’re reading this, then this task is probably often delegated to you.
While planning for a group can seem daunting, it can be made easy by keeping a few things in mind and laying some ground rules for the group. Here are my two main steps:
Establish the organization of the group
When out with your friends hanging out at the local Starbucks or having dinner out, a purely democratic approach is the best way to go. When traveling, however, especially for trips that will take the group out of familiar settings, having a clearly designated leader is a must. This responsibility usually falls to the most experienced traveler of the group (who is also usually the one planning the trip).
Coming to an understanding of this before the trip even begins is important as it will prevent arguments given there’s an agreed leader to have the last say on decisions.
Remember that you can’t please everybody
Trying to come up with an itinerary that will make everyone completely happy is virtually impossible. On one hand, the reason you’re traveling as a group is for shared experiences. On the other hand, there may be some activities not everybody may be up for. Not everyone wants to travel miles and miles just to go to a museum or a park.
The key here is to find balance. What I often do is present a list of the possible areas of interest at each destination we’ll be visiting and see how many people want to visit each. The ones that have the interest of the majority get tagged as group visits, while I also allocate “individual time” for members of the group to split up. Just remember to make it clear that people have to meet back up by a certain time!
What are your ground rules for your travel groups?