Dealing with a spouse who doesn’t want to travel
I’m not married but this is some advice I gave to a friend on this topic:
If you want to travel more than your spouse does, it can cause some issues in relationships. Here are some ways around it:
– Try each contributing the same portion of your salaries to your shared expenses. This means the higher earner will pay more, but you’ll both pay the same percentage e.g., 50% of your after tax income.
– Have a set amount that is your discretionary spending that you and your spouse are allowed to spend “no questions asked” and use this for your travels. Your spouse may use their’s for clothes or furnishings or things you wouldn’t spend money on. That’s ok. They may not agree with you that travel is a good use of money.
– Be prepared to travel alone. Some alone time can be good for a couple. Some relationships can tolerate long periods of being geographically apart, but what I’m mainly talking about where is going away for weekends or week long trips.
– If your spouse isn’t as into travel as you are, it doesn’t mean you’re right and they’re wrong. You don’t need to convince them of why travel is so awesome. They are entitled to their opinion.
– Try to find some types of trips that you like to do together. Maybe your spouse likes extended family trips close to home but isn’t so into international trips. Maybe your spouse likes hiking but isn’t into museums. You can probably figure out some common ground.
– If you are a work to live person, and your spouse is a live to work person, you may need to accept that they prefer to be working and don’t want to take breaks away from their career. If you decide to do a longer trip without your spouse, there are no guarantees it won’t harm your relationship, so understand you are taking that risk. For some relationships, this works out fine and even has an “absence makes the heart grow fonder” effect. You’ll need to negotiate it.
– Make sure you continue to have your normal couple type conversations even when one of you is travelling. For example, you’ll still need to have discussions about something that needs to be fixed at your home and the like, or what to buy such and such for a birthday present. Unless it’s a very short trip, travel slow enough that you have time to talk about these types of topics over Skype etc.
– Prioritize having an easy communication method e.g., have backup internet on your phone so if the hotel internet is out, you can easily check in with each other at the planned time.