Our first interview of the year is a fun one – a fighting couple! Ok, well, they don’t fight all the time, but they’re open and honest about what it takes to travel successfully as a couple. I think their insights and their tips for making travel more special are useful for all of us, even single solo travellers.
Could you introduce yourselves?
We are the the fighting couple aka Mike and Luci! We met in the second grade and have been fighting ever since. Our blog is www.1000fights.com. We started it with the intent to encourage other couples to get out and travel together. We offer insights on how to travel on the cheap. How to get along. And of course we share a few of our couple fights.
You started out with smaller trips, which is a great way for those looking to travel more to get started. Any tips for someone interested in planning some short, simple adventures?
I think this is good advice for anyone. Start your adventures in the area that you live. Traveling together “forces” you to have a conversation. Turn off the radio and power off the blackberries and just talk. Start the conversation. Then set a goal. Where would the both of you dream of going. Ireland? An African Safari? Then work together to achieve the goal. Set up a savings plan. Working together and attaining a goal can be such a unifying force in your relationship.
You have a habit of celebrating major events – such as your anniversaries. That’s so nice – what sparked that idea?
On our honeymoon we set the goal to go somewhere together every year. Just us. So we agreed that for every year that we are married we would add on another $100 on for airfare and hotel. It gives us an annual escape. We talk about areas we can strengthen our marriage. Being in another setting can be such a recharge to any relationship.
You tend to not take your children with you on vacation. Is that sometimes or all the time? What would you say to the moms and dads out there reading and trying to plan travel?
We think that it is vital to a healthy relationship to spend couple time together. You need the time get to know each other, discuss goals and ideas, and of course rekindle the romance. We do take a family vacation each year with the entire family. This is important. But we look forward to our annual trip together.
What’s been your most inspirational travel experience?
So many great ones to chose from. One of the coolest places we went was Turkey. We visited the ancient ruins at Ephesus. We arrived before the tourist throngs arrived and were able to have the entire place to ourselves. I took a few minutes alone in reflection in the Celsius Library. It was a life changing experience. I was standing in the same place that ancient thinkers gathered together to discuss some of the ideas that would change the future of mankind. It was true was amazing. I would recommend Turkey to anyone.
So, where are you going next?
We play our annual trips 8 months to a year in advance. We put a ton of effort into learning about the locale, learning the language, making our plans to see off the beaten path places. Our next trip is this spring. We are going to Europe with stops in Paris, Venice and a week in Croatia/Slovenia. We typically plan our trips a year in advance. While we have a number of friends that enjoy doing RTW (round the world) trips. That is just not for us. We like to do a ton of research on the locations that we visit. We learn the language, culture and history. We even have taken college courses on the places we are going to visit. We are really anti-tour guide. If we don’t know more than the average tour guide by the time we get to a location, we haven’t done our research. One exception to this rule is Context Travel. They offer tours by PhD level guides that are experts in their fields. They offer some amazing tours.
Wow, some great thoughts and some exciting adventures ahead! Folks, if you’d like to follow along on their interesting (and often hilarious) adventures, be sure to visit Mike and Luci’s site, www.1000fights.com.