Travel with Friends

 In Travel Tips


Arguments, hurt feelings and sleepless nights can take over a trip you embark on with friends if you don’t do it right.

With a little planning travel with friends can help you grow closer together, give you some one-on-one time that you might not normally get and create memories you will be laughing about for years to come.

Over Labor Day weekend we met up with two of my best girlfriends and their families at Cannon Beach. Neither of them had ever been; it was fun to show just why we fell in love with this part of Oregon.

The kids played all day on the beach, flying kites, splashing in the frigid waters and building sand castles. The parents got to kick back, hang out in the sun, chat and eat a whole lot of junk food.

Part of the reason this worked so well is because I explore Seattle on a regular basis with Nic, Gen and their kids. We know each other’s parenting style; we are used to each other’s rhythms.

Mike helped out the kids after Dek face planted in the sand

What made this a successful weekend?

  • Moms got some kid-free time in town while the dads napped with the children at the hotel (hey, moms deserve a vacation too!)
  • We talked about food we would share ahead of time.
  • We all played breakfast by ear
  • Everyone had their own car so no family was reliant on another
  • Ideas for activities were thrown out to the group, if anyone wasn’t up for it they could do their own thing, no problem.
  • We all arrived at the beach on separate days to accommodate our own schedules.
  • Most important: We knew each other well enough that if something was going wrong we could just talk about it quickly before anyone started to obsess and seethe over a miscommunication or hurt feelings.

One thing we might change is the fact that we all had separate hotel rooms. On a future trip we hope to rent a big house. It would solve some of the problems of which parent gets to hang out in the hot tub late at night with friends while the other watches the kids. I can’t wait for the next trip we take!

Do you travel with friends? How do you make it work
and still remain friends at the end? 

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Showing 11 comments
  • Average Traveller

    Having great travel buddies can add so much to trips. You’re right that you have to be very careful how you select who you travel with because things can go very very badly if you go with an incompatible group.

    As you mention, making sure that everyone is free to go their own way if they need is nice.

    When travelling in a group I think it`s important to try to find people who are reasonably laid back but still excited to be where you are going. Trying to over-schedule and having too many must see or must do things really cranks up the stress level.

  • Michele @ Malaysian Meanders

    I haven’t really traveled with friends, but I’ve played host to multiple families at one time at my in-laws’ bayhouse. It’s like one giant slumber party. Sometimes, I feel like it takes so much effort to juggle my 3 kids’ plus hubby’s interests when we travel that throwing in another family might complicate things too much. Perhaps I just need to find the right match.

  • Gaby

    beautiful post! It really can be challenging to travel with friends, but when it works, its totally worth it! I remember backpacking with 3 friends throught the middle east a couple of years ago and i was fortunate enough to realize that they would become 3 of my closest lifelong friends. thanks for sharing your experience and photos! 🙂

  • Lisa

    I’ve traveled with family but not friends and I agree that it’s important that everyone feel like they can do their own thing if they want to. Renting a big house sounds like a great idea!!

  • Tonya @ The Traveling Praters

    We’ve traveled with friends and had both really good and really bad experiences. Like you mentioned, the key is knowing each other well. We found it’s best to travel with friends that are similar and used to traveling the same way we do. We once stayed at a cabin with friends who were used to fancy accomodations. They complained the entire weekend about what we thought was rustic charm. 🙁

  • Becca@R We There Yet Mom?

    I love to travel with good friends – it is so nice to be in a different environment, exploring together. We did a beach trip this summer with friends in a big house and it worked really well!

    Thanks for linking up!

  • Sonja

    We’ve done it before, with a big group of kids, and I was surprised at how well it all went. So much fun, too!

  • Genevieve

    Beautiful pics Keryn and wonderful post. Yes, traveling with friends could be potentially turbulent, but thankfully we all know each other, including parenting styles, well enough to just have fun exploring new places together. I think it really helps that our kids play well together, our attitudes remained positive, and we all tried to pitch in when we can, be it babysitting, cooking, grocery shopping, or bringing gear. Chalk up another great trip, and we definitely look forward to the next one! Soon, right?!

  • Ashley Cooke

    This is a very interesting blog. I love the travel pictures, it makes me miss my bestfriend more.

  • Lisa Wood

    We havent travelled with friends (yet) only because the opportunity has it arrived. Have travelled with family – that takes a lot of patience! But is a lot of fun 🙂
    Looks like you guys had a good time.

  • Agness (@Agnesstramp)

    There is nothing better than having a day off with friends. 🙂 Looks you had a great fun guys. I will see my friends next month, can’t wait 🙂

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