One of the things I’ve noticed this past year is the pervasiveness of “travel” on people’s dating app bios. In the beginning I would get excited to meet a fellow travel addict, but now I take it with a pinch of salt. So, in order to help you distinguish the backpackers from the business travellers and the outright liars, I thought I’d make a list. It’s also a great excuse to use all these cute pictures of me.
Disclaimer: this post is meant in good heart and tongue-in-cheek. Some of the below anecdotes are based on real dates I’ve been on, others things I’ve overheard 🙂 If you feel identified, HMU. Let’s face it, you could be the reason I wrote this post.
The 9 travel enthusiasts you’ll date
1. The backpacker
You’ll probably meet while travelling. Or perhaps you spot their huge backpack in a coffee shop and melancholy gets the best of you, or you go on Couchsurfing and you end up having drinks with a bunch of strangers. Regardless of how you meet, their inherent coolness will tug at your heartstrings.
The backpacker is the romance everyone wants at least once in their lifetime. Humble, minimalist, exactly what your mother hates and incredibly well-travelled. They were probably scuba-diving in Thailand before it was cool. This person will ruin the game “Never Have I Ever” for you, since your friends will know about all the weird stuff you’ve done with them.
2. The “I’ve been to more places than you”
Potentially the most annoying person you’ll ever date. You’ll meet on a dating app because the word “travel” was on their bio and you’re desperate for human contact.
Them: ‘So I’ve seen on your profile that you like to travel?
You: ‘Yes, actually I have a travel blog and I’d like to have visited 30 countries by the time I’m 30’.
Them: ‘Cool. Yeah, I’ve probably been to way more than that already…’
Yawn. Folks, this is not a competition. Cue the long list of countries they’ve been to and what they’ll do this year. By the end of the date you’ll be hyperventilating because there’s no way you could get enough time off to do half of those trips, and seriously considering a career change. I mean, really, how much do they make?
3. The business traveller
This guy, it’s usually men, comes out straight out of Tinder to send you the filthiest text you could possibly imagine… before even saying hello! They’re in town on a business trip or about to go on one. They want to have dinner at their place and get you to “open up” or “share travel stories”.
Most of the time they aren’t pretty enough to get away with it, and just reading their texts will exhaust you. They’ll pencil you in between 7 and 9. You won’t be bothered to reply and ghost them instead.
4. The eco-traveller
They have good intentions but are judgemental of your choices. You’ll probably date them for a while and you’ll want to support their ridiculous endeavours such as kayaking an obscure river (Is it even legal? And they did take a flight there, so why are they giving you crap?) or staying at an eco-lodge in Bali without ever even trying nasi goreng (again, they flew there so their biodegradable hemp contact lenses are doing nothing). By the way, they are compulsive smokers.
5. The one with the really cool story
You won’t see this one coming. You’ll think you are on an innocent date when the topic of travel comes up and you start to get serious FOMO. What do you mean they ate horse cheese in the middle of the Mongolian desert? This person will immediately become your #travelgoals because nothing in your repertoire can top their adventures.
You’ll become the insta-stalker with this one, but they hardly ever use social media so you live the rest of your days starved for their attention.
6. The outright liar
An expert storyteller. You’ll be biting your nails over their adventures in a remote part of the world, to suddenly find out the alleged mugger was actually a regular con-person trying to get them to pay tourist price for a tourist activity.
They’ll bargain with the locals over a couple of pennies and that’ll piss you off. You’ll mutually ghost each other and you’ll have forgotten their name a couple of days after. They do watch all your Instagram stories, though.
7. The blogger
They’ll carry their tablet/notebook with more care than their passport. They’ll insist on writing down everything you do together and get pictures of absolutely everything. It could get annoying quickly, but in their efforts to get good shots you’ll get a whole book of pictures from your trip.
You’ll ask them on another trip purely because they’re experts at finding unique restaurants and activities and you need a new profile pic for Bumble. Eventually, you’ll appear on their blog and you’ll get a handful of followers from that.
8. The influencer
Like the blogger, the influencer has planned the itinerary expertly. By the time you go on your first trip together, you’ll be used to taking pictures of them and making sure you have the right angle.
Soon enough you’ll get bored of the lack of spontaneity and you’ll yearn for cultural nourishment. Yes, that cliff was gorgeous, but couldn’t you have stayed for a bit longer? Nonetheless, having an influencer in your life could be a match made in heaven. After all, they always have an excuse to get away and if their following is big enough, you might get a free trip out of it.
9. The one who got away
My heart breaks every time I think of the ones who got away. These people will come into your life unexpectedly, probably when you’re already travelling and have a limited amount of time together. Maybe they slipped their phone number on a crumpled piece of paper, or perhaps they took you dancing the first night in a new city. All your walls will immediately come down and you’ll venture out into a few spontaneous days you’ll never forget.
After seeing Berlin from the back of their bicycle; or squealing with joy upon seeing their name flash on a screen before a night out; or finding your new favourite poet, you’ll think you’re in love. You’ll remember them fondly and try to meet up back home, but it will never work. A couple of years down the line you’ll see they’re married and you’ll cry for a bit. You can’t not think of them, but you wish them all the happiness.
What about you? How many have you encountered in your travels or back home? Did I skip any? And, most importantly, which one are you?