4 Things To Remember Before Going On A Road Trip With Your Partner For The First Time, Because You're In For A Wild Ride

Picture this: You’re cruising down the Interstate with the wind in your hair and Khalid bumping out of the speakers as your boo looks away from the road to steal a loving glance. You’re heading somewhere you’ve never been before, and the possibilities are endless. Honestly, is there anything more romantic than going on a road trip with your partner? It’s basically the definition of “young, wild, and free.” Taking your relationship on the road not only poses an opportunity to make new shared memories while experiencing so many new things together, but it also presents the chance to strengthen your bond. By the time you arrive home, you may be surprised by how much you’ve learned about each other.

That said, a road trip means spending a lot of time alone together in places you aren’t familiar with. That means you’ll definitely want to make sure you plan out your trip well and prepare as much as possible. The more details you can hash out ahead of time, the higher the likelihood that your road trip is memorable in the best way possible. The thrill of traveling across states together can certainly bring you and bae closer. But you’ll definitely want to keep the following things in mind in order to ensure that your trip goes as smoothly and stress-free as possible.

It's crucial to discuss the budget ahead of time.

Depending on the stage or nature of your relationship, talking about money might feel a tad awkward. But TBH, when it comes to your first road trip, talking about it ahead of time can save you both from a whole lot of awkwardness later — say, when the check comes for your meals, or you stop at the gas station for the sixth time.

Make sure to have an open and honest discussion about what you can contribute to the road trip. Once you’ve both communicated your individual budgets, you can figure out whether you’d like to split everything you purchase on the trip evenly (side note: bless Venmo) or switch off paying for things. And don’t be afraid to tell your partner if any of their plans are causing you any stress in terms of finance. If your SO has a higher income, for example, and wants to stay in a hotel that’s too expensive for you, then you can provide some slightly cheaper alternatives. If they don’t like those alternative options, then they could cover the difference above your spending limit for lodging.

A thoughtful — but loose — itinerary is ideal.

Hands down, one of the most enjoyable parts of going on your road trip is picking out all your must-see attractions with Instagram-worthy photo ops (#nofilterneeded), restaurants with drool-worthy grub, and charming accommodations for snuggling up together after a long day of exploring. Be sure that you do most of that planning as a team, and be willing to compromise if you have different priorities.

While planning is key to a successful road trip, it is possible to over plan, however. So leave a little wiggle room in the itinerary. Rather than packing too many stops into the schedule, make sure there’s plenty of time for spontaneity. That way, you’re free to explore that cool flea market or off-the-beaten-path wine bar you stumble upon. Remember: Sometimes the best things in life are the ones you don’t plan for or expect. And that is definitely true on a road trip.

Don't forget to divide up the responsibilities.
Shaun Robinson/Stocksy

Teamwork makes the dream work — and that is especially true when you’re going on a road trip with your boo. So before you hit the road, discuss how you’ll divide up the responsibilities.

Will you split up the driving evenly? Or will one of you do more of the driving, while one of you does more of the navigating? If one of you is doing most of the driving, can the other one help out in other ways, like getting out to pump gas or running in to get you both a much-needed iced coffee on a pitstop? You can prevent either partner from getting potentially resentful if both are pulling your weight on the trip and contributing in some way.

You don’t have to do everything together.

A road trip certainly means a lot of bonding time for you and bae. But it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend 24 hours a day together from start to finish. If you’re dying to hit up that arboretum and they’re more interested in doing some shopping, feel free to split up for an hour or so and spend some time exploring solo.

Allowing yourselves to do your own thing on the road trip reinforces that you are two separate individuals with unique interests, and that’s totally OK. Besides, when you and your SO meet back up again, you’ll have so much to talk about over drinks or dinner.

Ready to hit the road? Keeping these things in mind can definitely make for a more successful first road trip. The key is to openly discuss all of the logistics of your trip ahead of time without over cramming your itinerary. If you and your boo are on the same page from the get-go, you’re primed for a trip that’s just as reinvigorating for your relationship as it is romantic.