Group travel is the idea of traveling somewhere with a group of people. You all set off together, you plan an itinerary together, and you return home as a group. Typically, you classify something as group travel when three or more people are going somewhere together. If you travel alone, this is solo travel, while traveling with someone else is more couples traveling or traveling as a pair.
Having read all of that, why would you consider traveling somewhere as a group? Is it beneficial when compared to other travel models? A lot of friends and groups go away together all the time, and they say it’s the best thing ever. But, you also get people that say group travel is not worth it. So, what are the main advantages and disadvantages of going away in a group?
Advantage: Safety in numbers
Travel safety is always at the forefront of your mind when going to a different country. Your family will be worried about you, as will everyone else that cares for you. Traveling alone or in a pair can be more dangerous than traveling in a group. When you have lots of people with you at all times, there’s less chance of something bad happening. In most stories where something awful happens, the traveler is on their own. To put it simply; you have safety in numbers when traveling as a group!
Advantage: More laughs
The more people you have around you, the more laughs you can have together. Life is always more enjoyable when you’re in a group. You can make yourself laugh, and traveling with someone else will be a barrel of laughs, but having a group around you just amplifies things. There’s always a possibility of someone doing something embarrassing or having a funny story to tell. It’s simply impossible to go on holiday with a group and not spend most of your time wheezing with laughter.
Advantage: Lots of themed vacations available
Group travel can be planned by one or two people, deciding what you all do together as a group. You can go off-piste and plan a trip around an area or to a specific city. However, a big advantage of group travel is that there are lots of themed vacations available. Companies like MTI Events will have offerings for things like golf vacations, theme park trips, and so on. Essentially, you and your group of friends/family can all go on a trip to do something specific. Again, you could do this alone or with another person, but most themed vacations make more sense when done in groups.
Advantage: Great for weddings
Another item in the pros column is that group travel is perfect for weddings. If you’re planning a destination wedding, you can go abroad with a group of people to enjoy your special day with them. It means everyone is on the plane together, you stay in the same place, and it creates a unique and lively atmosphere.
Disadvantage: Hard to plan
Planning your group travel can be significantly harder than planning one alone. Granted, you can find companies that will plan it for you, but this means paying extra for a service you don’t technically need. The problem with group travel planning is that you have to account for so many different people. Imagine you’re going away in a group of 10 people, you now need to find somewhere for 10 people to stay, a flight with 10 spare seats, transport for 10 people, and so on. When you go out, you have to find somewhere to eat and drink that all 10 people will like. You also need to rely on the 9 other people to be responsible and get everything in order for the trip. Will everyone remember passports and travel documents?! As a solo traveler, you only have yourself to worry about. Traveler in a pair means one other person, which isn’t nearly as challenging to plan.
Disadvantage: More arguments
While you do have more fun with a group, there’s also the possibility of more arguments. This is more likely to happen when you travel with your family, but it can happen with friends as well. It was mentioned above that you have a whole group of people to organize things with. Therefore, it stands to reason that some members of the group will prefer doing some things than others. You can get in situations where minor squabbles occur between people in the group as you can’t decide on what to do. Also, being around the same people for an extended period can be challenging, so arguments are only likely to occur!
Disadvantage: Sometimes more expensive
In some cases, group travel can be more expensive than traveling alone. This doesn’t seem like it makes sense as you could theoretically split the cost of things between a group of people. However, the fact you have to travel with numerous people means that you are restricted in your options. For instance, imagine you’re traveling with over 10 people, you need to find a flight with at least 10 seats free. The cheapest options might not have that many seats available, so you end up paying more to accommodate everyone. The same goes for staying in places; will the most affordable options cater to your group’s needs? A lot of the time you are forced to pay more to find places that will suit everyone’s requirements and accommodate the entire group.
After weighing everything up, you can see that group travel isn’t for everyone. Some of you might not like the disadvantages, while others may think the pros greatly outweigh the cons. One key thing to note is that a lot depends on the group you’re traveling with and the size of your group. For instance, a group of 3 probably won’t see some of the disadvantages we’ve mentioned, or they won’t be as substantial as a group of 15 or more. Still, if you’re interested in a different way of traveling – rather than going at it alone – this could be something to think about trying.