The 7 Travelling Personality Types


travel woman airport
Image Source

Ahhhh travelling. Jumping on that plane, going somewhere new. Sometimes for fun. Sometimes not. At some point we all end up travelling. Unless you’re dedicated to the cause and you refuse to put a foot outside your door. Then you might need to come and have a chat to me. When you can put your foot outside your door.

Travelling can bring out the best in us and the worst in us all at the same time. It can test relationships, it can give parents conniptions for years to come, it can plant that little itch that needs to be scratched only by jumping on a plane and going somewhere else.

You know how we talk about our personality styles? Introvert, extrovert, omnivert, pervert. So I may have made that last one up, but it rings true at times, no? I think that travelling shows us another side to our personalities. One that isn’t really described much, but very much threads its way through our everyday lives.

Our travelling personality can change relationships. They can show us a side of ourselves we’ve been reluctant to let out. And sometimes we see that personality in others and we just don’t know what the hell to do with it.

So without further ado, I present to you, the 7 core traveller personalities, and tips for dealing with them. So you can all enjoy your trip without murdering each other. You’re welcome.

travel ocd

The OCD Traveller

This is the traveller you love to travel with, but loathe all at the same time. The one who is anally planning the trip to within an inch of its life. There’s an itinerary, and an itinerary of the itinerary. There’s a special folder, with mountains of paperwork in it. There’s the lists, the endless lists, of places to stay , things to do . The OCD traveller has you covered. You want a Plan A? You’ve got it. You want a Plan B,C,D,E,F and G too? No? Too bad, you’re getting them too. Sleep in on holidays? What is that? The time spent away is about cramming as much as humanly possible into each 24 hour period. You can sleep at home goddamnit.

Tips to Cope with an OCD Traveller:  Let them plan. Let them plan the plan of the plan. If they’re trying to plan you, just nod and smile. And do your own thing when you get on holidays. Because chances are, by the time you actually get to your destination, they’re so burnt out from being anally retentive, they just want to get drunk. Let them burn themselves out and just enjoy the organisational ride. Or put ear plugs in and nod and smile. Same same.

 travel go with the flow

The Go with the Flow Traveller

The GWTF traveller is that cool cat that you’d love to have around, but at the same time you want to throttle. They’re chilled, they’re casual. They might pack their suitcase in the morning of the flight. If they feel like it. Who’s in a rush to get to the airport? Eh, they’ll just let us on the plane regardless, right? Holidays are not to be planned out, it’s about seeing what you feel like when you’re down there.  Sure, you might spend half your time with them saying “no, YOU choose where to go” and then realise that you’ve wasted half the day contemplating things and in the end miss that great day trip because you’ve faffed around for too long. But they are relaxed man.

Tips to cope with the GWTF Traveller: Give them more time than they think they have. So if you have to be at the airport in 60 mins? Tell them that you need to be at the airport in 30 mins, so that you can account for their faffing around. Keep a broad idea in your mind of what you want to do on holidays and you be the director of the show. They’ll just go with the flow, so the holiday is yours for the taking. Muahahahahahaha.

travel fluro lycra
You can actually hire these people here. For realz. What travel buddies, huh?

The Fitness Instructor Traveller

Think Richard Simmons on crack.  The fitness instructor traveller is the one who looks like they’ve just downed 20 espressos and they’re READY TO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! They’re pumped. They psyched. And they’ll psych everyone up around them. They’ve got the motivational quotes, the inspirational posters, they’re so psyched for this trip, you can’t help but feel the urge to don some fluro lycra and jump around. Because holidays are EXCITING! SO EXCITING! ALL THE TIME!!! Everything is awesome.

Tips to cope with the FI Traveller: Soak up their excitement. Get allll up in it. Trips are fun! Sure, you might need a cup of tea and a lie down after soaking up the excitement, but let them have their fun, and let yourself get swept up in it too. But let’s draw the line at fluro lycra. Unless that’s your thang.

travel tweek
Yup. Image source

 The Tweaked Traveller

These guys are like the fitness instructors, but swap out the over-zealous pumped vibe and insert mad panic. Ever seen Tweek from South Park? That. This traveller is a toughie. They really want to get out and do stuff. But they’re shit scared. The mere mention of travel sends their knuckles white, and you can see the grey hairs appearing before your eyes. They downplay the trip, avoiding all discussion about it. They’ll be googling airline carriers in secret and conducting investigations as to which one hasn’t had a crash yet. And of course in the week that you’re getting ready to catch a flight there will be a mysterious crash somewhere around the world. Because. Murphy’s Law. They can recite to you the airline safety chart in their sleep. But they insist on watching the safety presentation in dead silence every time regardless.  Because you can never be too safe.

Tips to cope with the Tweaked Traveller: When they’re sleeping, secretly play some Enya in their iPod. I hear “Sail Away”  is a cracker of a song. Get them feeling calm and relaxed. Distract them from their tweaked panic. Hide the caffeine for a few days. Beer at a 6am flight is totally acceptable for these people- just taking the edge off, right? Just don’t get caught up in their vibe and you’ll be fine.

travel spiritual
Image Source

The Spiritual Traveller

This traveller is one with the plane. And one with the small packet of crackers and cheese they get on the flight. And one with the baggage carousel. And one with the destination. Traveling is a journey in faith and spirituality man. It’s big. They go deep into themselves, often having a ritual or chant under their breath as the plane takes off. It’s very que sera sera.

Tips for Dealing with the Spiritual Traveller:  Hey, better than a tweaked travel pal, right? Chant a few ‘ommms’ along with them and sit back and relax.

eeyore excited meme

The Eeyore Traveller

You know the Eeyore traveller. We all know one. That traveller that doesn’t want to get their hopes up. Doesn’t want to be disappointed by the trip. So let’s just be disappointed from the get go so we can’t go any further down from here. Makes sense, right? This traveller deep down really likes to travel, but you won’t ever hear that pass their lips. It’s all just too hard. The planning. Spending money on having fun. Packing. Finding activities. Getting on the plane. “Bet you there’s a delay. Uhhh huhh…. See I was right. And I didn’t even get my crackers and cheese”. And while there’s all this awesome stuff going on around them, they’ll be focusing on the turbulence, the noisy kids, the jerk in front who decided to recline their seat allllll the way back (but seriously WHO DOES THAT?? WHHHYYYYY??). They kinda have a bit of fun. Once the holiday is all done and dusted and they’re back in the comfort of their own home.

Tips for Dealing with an Eeyore Traveller: Be the tigger of your crew! You know your Eeyore means well, they just don’t want to get their hopes up. So you bounce around them with a lisp, and counter-balance all the downers. You know they’re a lovable pal, you know they’ll have fun. You just have to show them the way.

travel meh

The Anti-climactic Traveller

These guys are such seasoned travellers, nothing excites them anymore. Planning a trip? Meh, I could do that with my eyes closed. A change in the crackers and cheese brand? Hmph. I’ve been through 5 different brand changes in my time. Free upgrade from economy? Eh. It’s ok I guess. I mean, this is like the eleventy billionth time I’ve been upgraded, so whatevs. It’s all so ho-hum, and the holiday might be alright, but they’ve been there, done that.

Tips for Dealing with the AC Traveller: Switch off.  Or let a party popper off near their ear while they sleep from boredom. Don a bit of fluro lycra and let loose. They might get swept up in your eagerness.


So there you have it. Which personality type are you? And have you had to travel with one of these characters? How did you survive? My go to? Wine. Always wine.


*This post is written as part of Virgin Australia top travel tips search for #pbevent.

  • A very light hearted look at travel you had me smiling then laughing. I think I’m almost an OCD Traveller but without quite so many plans and list and my partner is the Go with the Flow, we wouldn’t move from the hotel if he had his way. So surprised we haven’t killed each other. But he does let me slow down and enjoy the trip whilst I ensure he gets out and sees something.

  • Oh god, I think I’m the OCD traveller…. I just get myself all worried that we won’t make the most of our time and we’ll miss some really important attraction and come home disappointed that we didn’t see everything we wanted to see. I blame New York. I was 22 and a bit too Go With The Flow and spent 10 days in New York without seeing the Empire State Building. I still kick myself. So now I’m up at the crack of dawn and have every day planned within an inch of its life. Lucky my husband is on board and hasn’t killed me just yet.

  • I think I may be guilty of being a cross between the OCD and the Tweaked Traveller… mostly due to a ridiculous flying phobia… that has me tweaked even after a few hundred flights! Hubby is totally go with the flow… makes for an interesting holidays!

  • I wish I had this guide back in the days when I was a tour guide. I’ve had ALL these types as passengers! I’d probably also add The Traveller Who Always Asks Dumb Questions Who You Want to Smack in the Face. (My fave: “Can I take my camera snorkelling on the Barrier Reef?” “Is it waterproof?” “No.” “Well no then.”)

  • This is great, I hate all of those types of travellers. I have no idea which one I am, I hope I’m a little bit of them all but I’m probably not. It is too terrifying to even think about what I must come across like.

  • I’m pretty much a GWTF traveller. {don’t hate me} Everything is last minute. Yep, I pack the morning we are leaving. But I do like to do some research about where we are going, so that there is some sort of plan of what to see and do. Love your post Sash. x

  • Haha! Great! I loved reading this. Sooooo, I am going to be one of those people, and say I am a bit of all of those titles. Honestly. I am. But you are right, these guys are on every trip/plane :)

  • Guess what? I’m an OCD traveller and I’m married to a go with the flow traveller! Oh the travel arguments we’ve had about running on time, packing at the last minute etc etc. I think over the years and months of backpacking through Europe and then America and Canada we’ve learnt to compromise a little. I keep the highlighting of my lonely planet to myself and he will let us leave with enough time up our sleeve that we aren’t sprinting toward the departure gate as they’re calling our names :) #teamIBOT

  • I use to be an OCD traveller, more of fitness instructor traveller, holidays are always exciting!

  • I suspect I was an anticlimactic traveller when I travelled a lot but probably more OCD now that I rarely (never?!) travel. In fact I regularly have nightmares about being caught enroute somewhere and not having passports and paperwork etc.

  • Omgosh…. I think I’m a bit of them all (minus the fluro Lycra and not really very Eeyore.) but I have travelled with some of them… they should just stay home with a cuppa tea on the couch!

    Awesome post chick. Good luck! Xx

  • This is hilare. I totes married an OCD traveller, I like to think I’m a potent combination of the other six types. Can you imagine us on vacay? It really is a sight to behold!

  • Hugzilla

    Oh hahahhahahha! I think I would be a cross between an Eeyore and a Planner! I’m totes fun! Absolutely loved this.

  • My husband is a Go With The Flow traveller while Im a cross between OCD and Fitness Instructor (without the lycra). I’m overexcited about travel and love the planning stages, but I lose the OCD tendencies once I arrive. Then it’s all about the excitement, wanting to be out exploring all day long and sleep is so overrated when you’re in a foreign country!

  • Oh this was awesome! They should put it in the inflight magazines :)

  • I’m not sure which category I fit into! I’m the “frantically leave the house and fridge clean as a display home, plan all the trip, pack mine and kids bags and collapse on the plane with exhaustion” kind of traveller!! Haha! Farmer usually leaves farm exhausted working to the last minute – we’re grumpy leaving but soon smiling once holiday mode hits!!

  • Oh dear, I think I’m becoming an anticlimactic traveller. (Hides head) I’m still excited!! … But its easy to sometimes take things for granted. Thanks for the reminder to always bring enthusiasm :)