We love to travel in groups. Spending quality time with our nearest and dearest sure is a way to feed our soul. Group travel is known for being a cost-effective way to travel and provides ample opportunities for socialising.
But as they say, you never fully know someone until you have travelled alongside them. What happens if you discover that your favourite drinking buddy from home is a nightmare, or that your new love interest just cannot let herself go and packs everything but the kitchen sink for a quiet meal out in the evening? We’ve all been there! Fret not, as we have identified some of these kinds of travellers and the best way for you to deal with them so as not to spoil your much-deserved holiday.
The Overbearing Traveller
This type of traveller treats a holiday as though they are still at work. Their behaviour is characterised by loud speech, demands, and often a false overconfidence. Despite appearences, the Overbearing Traveller is quite insecure about losing control of their situation making them less comfortable and relaxed being immersed in alien cultures and travelling in unfamiliar surroundings. This exaggerates their haughtiness. Because of their insecurities, The Overbearing Traveller is often found in tour or package holiday groups, rather than travelling independently.
Imagine being away for 2-3 weeks in a group with this type of tourist.
Some tips on how to cope: Often Overbearing Travellers will trap their listeners in a bubble of dialogue from which it is hard to escape. Keep a distance and make yourself invisible, sitting as far away as possible. If approached pretend you are making a call or taking a picture. Definitely make sure you don’t get sit near them if you are dining at the same place. Don’t get trapped into listening- they just want an audience, and conversation will usually end up being about them, and how much they know. How fun!
The Overequipped Traveller
When traveling to lands far away this type of traveller worry about not having everything they need in their new and alien environment.
This phobia leads to one of the biggest traveller worries: “What if”? The traveller then takes comfort in over equipping. Does “too many clothes and a backpack full of gear, containing items which will never be needed or used?” sound familliar? These comfort blankets mask a form of ‘away from home’ anxiety. Have you spotted one during your travels? What if “the plugs don’t work, what if my batteries run out, or my camera doesn’t work, what if they don’t have tea, and so the list gets longer.
Some tips on how to cope: Our advice is travel as light as possible especially if your journey involves moving around. You will be able to move faster instead of being weighed down by too much extra equipment. Plus, you are less likely to lose things if you keep it simple! We would also not recommend enabling angsty travel partners by taking responsibility for their unnecessary items.
The Know It All Traveller
This traveller knows more about everything than anyone else in the group. They exhibit many of the characteristics of the Overbearing Traveller, too. These travellers often have no shame in proudly proclaiming that they are the ‘expert’ on certain matters and will bombard you with many anecdotal stories of times when they were ‘right’. Keep away from a Know It All because it will severly diminish the spirit of adventure.
Some tips on how to cope: Avoid challenging their ‘knowledge’, as it may cause conflict. It’s also important not to take it personally, as their behaviour is more a sign of their own inadequacies than it is yours. Perhaps plan your moves separately and discreetly, under the guise of ‘spontaneity’ – this is sure to send them into a spin without causing an affray.
Main Image: Pilot Productions
Words: Ian Cross – The Forensic Traveller Series