Traveling with pals is a blast, but trips can get complicated when the group isn't organized. It may seem easier to simply send a few texts and start booking, but a little bit of prepurchase prep can help to keep people happy. Even better? Planning ahead of time allows for more ideas and more research, so you're more likely to have that incredible vacation you're hoping for.
- Have a prep session. Get the group together to talk about destination ideas and travel dates. Skip long email threads or one-on-one phone calls to make sure that everyone's voice is heard and no one has to be the middleman.
- Assess budgets. Once everyone has agreed on the big picture, discuss the nitty-gritty details. It may feel a bit awkward, but encourage your pals to be open about their budgets so the group can set realistic expectations for the trip. Try creating a minibudget plan for the vacation, or keep things simple by deciding on a maximum spending amount.
- Divvy up responsibilities. Let each person take charge of a different travel duty to make sure everyone has a say in the particulars of the trip. For instance, one friend can research hotels while another checks on flights. Depending on how specific you'd like the plans to be, others in the group can look up local restaurants or fun things to do during the day.
- Hunt for discounts. Before too many things are set in stone, do a quick search across the Internet to find any relevant deals or discounts. Heading somewhere tropical? See if there's a price cut on parasailing. Going to a big city? Call the tourist center to see if you can get discounted tickets to shows or attractions in advance.
- Host a booking party. Sometimes anticipating a vacation can be almost as fun as actually taking one, so make the most of it and host a get-together for the group. Take that time to book all at once so everyone is on the same page, then boost excitement by serving festive drinks or watching a movie that relates to your plans.
Have you ever planned a trip with friends? Share your advice in the comments below!