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5 Reasons Why You Can (And Should) Travel Solo While in a Relationship

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Traveling solo is one of the most rewarding things that you can do for yourself. You learn how to enjoy the silence and your own company in a way that you don’t usually find in day-to-day life. You gain independence and confidence while successfully navigating around a foreign country. And most importantly, you learn so much about yourself in the process. I cannot recommend traveling solo enough.

And while this sounds great for those who are single, what about those of us in loving, committed relationships? Should we travel solo too?

Absolutely! I’m not saying to never travel with your significant other. That is also rewarding in a profound, amazing way. But there are times when you can (and should) travel solo while in a relationship. Here is why you should:

Kat exploring the South of France

  1. Because you are both two independent people.

Probably the most important reason to travel solo while in a relationship is because you both are two, independent people. As much as we love our relationships and being a single unit, it can be a struggle to carve out your own identity in the process. “I” becomes “we” rather quickly, and while there isn’t anything wrong with that, traveling solo helps you to be your own person with your own interests.

No, it isn’t about needing space from your partner. It isn’t about having fun without them. And it certainly isn’t about seeing who else is out there. It is about working on yourself, your needs, and your own self-discovery. It is about opening your own eyes to different cultures and forming your own perspectives. And when you come home from your trip, you have so many more fun things to talk about and share with your partner!

Kat climbing a mountain

  1. You get to be a little selfish and embrace your own travel-style- and it’s okay!

I hate using the word “selfish” here, but we know that rarely two people have the same travel style. In our own relationship, I’m more of the get-up and take on the day and see and do as much as possible. Chris likes to slowly ease into travel and take on one or two activities a day. While both are great ways to travel, it can be nice to go somewhere solo and travel in your own way, whether that means sleeping in and lounging by the pool or exploring the sites and taking in as much as possible.

The best part is you get to make the day what it is. Embrace it and determine your travel style! Then, reflect on your partner’s travel style and how those can work together in the future!

Solo Travels

  1. Schedules don’t always align.

Sometimes you should travel solo because you simply don’t have the same amount of time off work or your travel schedules don’t align. Maybe the other person only gets two weeks off and you have a trip planned together later on, but you’ve got four weeks to spare and want to explore a new place in the meantime.

You don’t have to sacrifice your well-deserved time off of work because the other person doesn’t have it! Or if they’re in busy-season and working all the time (all too true when I was an accountant), why not go on vacation and enjoy your time solo versus sitting alone at home?

Sometimes travel plans and schedules don’t align, so why not do a combo of traveling together when you can and going solo when you can’t?

When I’ve traveled to conferences in the past, while Chris is invited, he typically can’t take the extra time off of work. He is totally supportive of me traveling to the conference solo and exploring the town. So I go solo and then we travel together at a better time for both of us.

Kat in Seattle at the Gum Wall

  1. It builds support and trust.

The saying, “If you love them, let them go,” certainly holds some truth. You should be able to 100% trust your partner in a relationship. That is the foundation of it after all. But if you want to be supportive or want them to be supportive of your dream of traveling, solo travel is the way to do it. You know you’ll come back, but this time with new growth and insights to share. Isn’t it worth letting them go without you or you go without them for this self-development? It may even make your relationship stronger!

Strengthen your relationship and build new communication skills by doing the long-distance thing, even if it is only for a long weekend. Learn about their travels or your travels, and ask in-depth questions about their journey and what they’ve learned along the way. It may surprise you!

Kat and Chris in Cambodia

  1. Last reason to travel solo while in a relationship: It makes traveling together that much sweeter.

Remember when I said that traveling together is also important? Well, after having traveled solo well before being in a relationship and still traveling solo while married, it has built my confidence tremendously. I can easily plan a trip, navigate around a city, and find all the best spots. I have traveled to places and am now going back with Chris, and it is exciting to show him to a place I’ve loved and to share it with him. It makes traveling together so sweet.

But my confidence and security in myself has made our relationship and travels even better. Working on you is so beneficial while in a relationship. Don’t forget that while a relationship must be nurtured and tended to in order to grow, you as an individual need to do this as well. Traveling solo allows this so that when you travel with your loved one, later on, it makes it that much better for yourself and your relationship.

Kat exploring Portugal

A strong relationship is meant to be honest, loving, and supportive. Traveling encourages these traits and traveling solo gives you the confidence and self-care that you need to make the most of your relationship. Don’t forget how important it is to also support your partner in their solo travels as well! Because being two, confident, independent people who are side-by-side makes life that much more adventurous, fun, and rewarding overall.

What do you think? Do you travel solo while in a relationship? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments!

Be sure to check out our podcast for more couples’ travel tips, destination guides, and more! And subscribe for more advice on traveling more for less!

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Friday 5th of April 2019

This post really made me think - since I've been married for 15 years and have 3 kids, it would never occur to me to travel solo. I do think it would be fun to travel with girlfriends or do a mother-daughter trip like Christine mentioned. For families, it could also mean splitting up one day if different people are interested in different activities, which my family has never done, but I would definitely consider now. That way everyone would get the most out of the vacation.

Kat

Saturday 6th of April 2019

That’s very true! Have fun on your travels!

Holly

Thursday 4th of April 2019

When I was just out of college I traveled solo to Miami for a conference and used part of the time for personal R&R! I have never done anything like that again. It was really nice. Before I was married. I mean prior to that I had only traveled with friends or family so it was really different for me to go somewhere solo like that. This past year I did a short weekend work trip alone and that was also nice. I had not traveled for work in 5 years.

Kat

Thursday 4th of April 2019

That's awesome! Where did you go for the weekend?

John McKenzie

Thursday 4th of April 2019

Totally agree! I'm trying to get my husband to do his own solo trip for the first time. He heard Andrew McCarthy speak at the DC Travel Show about the life-changing benefits of solo travel and I think he realizes it is something he should do at least once in his life. Of course, I'll have my own FOMO but that's part of it. I always get to travel solo, and he's left at home. I kind of want him (and me) to experience the other side. It will help us grow and have our own experiences to share with each other. Great article!

Kat

Thursday 4th of April 2019

That's so true about the FOMO, but it is such a great experience that you can't blame him for wanting to do it! And it's all about supporting one another on your solo travels! Thank you so much and I can't wait to hear about his solo adventure!

Christine z

Wednesday 3rd of April 2019

I agree! It's a little different (well, for me it was) after you have kids though. I didn't like leaving my daughter when I traveled for work or for conferences. Now, my daughter and I go on vacations together lol. We spent a girls weekend a couple months ago at the Mall of America and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

Kat

Thursday 4th of April 2019

That's a fair point! And who doesn't love a mother-daughter trip? I remember taking a couple of girls weekend trips with my mom and sister growing up and we had so much fun. Those memories will last forever!

Alison

Wednesday 3rd of April 2019

I love this post! I've been thinking about traveling solo, but I didn't know if I should since I have a long term boyfriend.

Kat

Wednesday 3rd of April 2019

Go for it! My now husband was busy studying for the Bar exam 4 years ago and I was like, "You're busy, I'll go to Europe!" You can definitely travel solo while being in a relationship!

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