Graduation trips, weekend with the girls, skiing trip with your buddies. We all know how travelling with a big group of friends can be both fun, yet exhausting at times. Keep these tips in mind to keep your travel stress at bay (especially if you’ve been nominated the lead planner for the trip!)
Choose who you can travel with
The first but most important decision you will have to make is in choosing the right travel companions. We all know that a clash in personalities, interests and travel preferences can cause friction on a group holiday. Since you will be spending an extended amount of time together, it would definitely help to travel with people you get along with.
Decide on a budget
Once you’ve settled on the travelling party, it would be good to nail down a budget that everyone is agreeable with. This gives you a good benchmark to plan your activities so that it stays affordable for everyone. Do keep a look out for group discounts on tours and packages, and even purchase group insurance to enjoy some savings.
Assign individual responsibilities
Set deadlines for different tasks so that the logistics and administrative matters are evenly spread and settled among different members of the group. You can even have three main task groups: necessities, research and meals.
Necessities would include flight and hotel bookings, emergency contact list, packing list and visas. The research team would start finding out more about the places of interest, key attractions, directions, how to get around and various transport options to and from the airport. As for the meals team, you can gather the foodies in the group to take charge of all dining reservations.
Settle on a common itinerary
Be flexible and adaptable to changes in plans in case of bad weather and other uncontrollable circumstances. Make sure there are group activities that everyone can participate in so no one feels left behind. Similarly, set aside free time for people to pursue their own interests or activities.
Travelling in a group does mean that it is easy for someone to get left behind. Always do a headcount along the way, or make sure everyone is contactable through some means – whether it means buying extra data cards, or grouping people in pairs where at least one person has a mobile phone.
Create a group chat so everyone is in the loop of each other’s whereabouts, and use that as a channel to contact each other or share information conveniently.
The worst thing that could happen in a group would be conflicts. However, these are bound to happen especially when people start stepping on each other’s toes, or when they experience living together.
Be prepared to mediate and thrash it out so as to minimise any further disagreements or tension within the group.
Keep these tips in mind and your next group holiday might not be the last one!