It’s Official: The Next Trip You Should Plan is a ‘Buddymoon’

Travelling with friends

After years of isolation, is it any wonder the two things that were uncompromisingly restricted – holidays and social experiences – have merged to become one of the biggest travel trends? 

Group travel is surging in popularity. Data reveals that in the first half of 2023 there were a staggering 12 million more nights booked for groups at hotels across the globe – an increase of almost 20 per cent – than the previous year. TikTok, the home of viral trends, is flooded with clips tagged “buddymoon” and “bestiemoon” as many of us seize the opportunity to see the world with the ones we love.

But, as we all know, holidaying with several plus ones can be a recipe for headaches, squabbles and unexpected clashes, particularly when you find that your friends’ travel styles (or goals) don’t align. So, how do you make sure that three (or more) is the kind of crowd you can handle? Here are a few tips to remember when planning a getaway with your besties.

Get clear on… everything

Friends travelling together

Even solo trips can be an overwhelming puzzle of planning and logistics. Add more travellers to the mix and you have a tangle of varying budgets, preferences and opinions (on everything). The easiest way to untie the knot is to start by figuring out what each person’s expectations are in the four big-ticket categories: destination, budget, accommodation and activities. Once you’ve agreed upon the key elements, lock them in so there’s no more movement. Whether it’s a shared WhatsApp thread or spreadsheet, having a record of all decisions made is crucial to avoiding confusion.

Make organising fun

Making plans doesn’t have to be super serious – it can be as simple as popping the names of a few resorts or camping destinations into a hat and leaving it to chance. Of course, you could also create a shared Pinterest board or prep a full-fledged presentation on why you should (or shouldn’t) head to Bali. Once you have a rough idea of everyone’s wish list, you’ll be able to narrow down the options. Remember: consensus is rare so compromise and clear communication are key (be prepared to take a hit on some things if you want to stand firm on others). 

Create a schedule (then break it)

Friends travelling together

Of course, you’ll want to do things together – that’s why you’ve booked a group trip – but at the same time, you don’t want to live in each other’s pockets. Maintain a balance by planning one activity each day that you’ll do as a group; your friends can supplement this with their own interests and spend time alone, should they need it. Also, one non-negotiable shared meal a day is a great way to maximise quality time together without feeling the need to constantly check in with each other.

Bank on a budget

Money has a way of making things tricky. To avoid arguments (real or imagined), outline budget parameters from the outset. Get clear and communicative on expected expenses so no-one is left out of the loop. In the planning stages, house all information in one shared spreadsheet so everyone can keep track of what’s happening. Once you’re on the trip, have an organised friend take charge of additional costs – a dinner someone put on their card, coffees another friend fronted up for – to ensure that when expenses are split at the end of the holiday, everyone is happy.

Buy now, play later 

If it suits the group, consider paying for experiences ahead of time or even booking an all-inclusive holiday (which can include flights, accommodation, meals and drinks in one prepaid bundle). Not only will this reduce stress while you’re on holiday, you’ll also avoid the awkward division of bills and reminders of any unpaid debts. 

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SEE ALSO: Everything You Need to Know: the Solo Travel Boom

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