Skip to content

8 tips for not just surviving but thriving on a group trip

March 01, 2020
7 min read
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Sixteen women — many who didn't know each other — decide to go on a 10-day trip to Morocco. What could possibly go wrong?

We spent nine days traveling around Morocco riding in four Toyota Land Runners with five guides from Trips To Morocco. Here are eight tips from me and my besties, Lauren and Roxana, that you should strongly consider if you decide to plan and execute a girls trip.

Our trip planner, Lauren A. (Photo by XXX)
Our trip planner, Lauren A. in Chefchaouen, Morocco, known as The Blue City. (Photo by Cheryl Foster)

Pick the right group

My bestie, Lauren A., was the trip planner and the alpha woman. Everyone on the trip was either directly or indirectly connected to her. Back in May, she sent out a note about this February trip, and I was the first one to respond. Once it was all said and done, there were five of us who went to college together, Lauren's stepsister and stepsister-in-law (who brought her childhood friend), women from the New Jersey "Mommy Mafia" and the crew from Lauren's hometown of Ipswich, Mass.

Our group shopping in the spice market in Merzouga, Morocco. (Photo by Trips To Morocco)
Our group shopping at the spice market in Merzouga, Morocco. (Photo by Trips To Morocco)

Whiners, complainers, gossipers and instigators should all be told "So sorry, the trip is filled. Maybe next time?" You never really know someone until you travel with them, but you should have a good idea of how "go-with-the-flow" they are beforehand.

Be upfront about trip costs

We took over this lovely riad for our two nights in Fes, Morocco. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy)
We took over this lovely riad for two nights in Fes, Morocco. It included breakfast and dinner. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy)

Lay out trip expenses as clearly and honestly as possible beforehand. Include everything, including airfare, hotel, meals, alcoholic beverages, tips, transportation, souvenirs, site entry fees, spa day, etc., so that there are no surprises. Also, insist on having travelers put up a deposit of up to 20% up front to weed out last-minute cancellations or those who just can't make up their mind.

Watch out for posers

France-based cruise line Ponant offers voyages around the Maldives on an intimate, 184-passenger vessel. (Photo courtesy of Ponant).
France-based cruise line Ponant offers voyages around the Maldives on an intimate, 184-passenger vessel. (Photo courtesy of Ponant).

Beware of what I call aspirational travelers. You know who they are — the ones who vote for the expensive 10-day Mediterranean cruise, but you know are going to have a hard time getting even three days off from work. Double for those who always seem to have money problems.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Know your audience

The donkey parking lot at the market in Erfoud, Morocco. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy)
Glamour girls will not want to walk through the donkey parking lot at the market in Erfoud, Morocco. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy)

This is an extension of tip number one. Don't take Glamour Girls camping, Mormons on wine tours or hikers to a spa resort. State your trip itinerary well in advance and try to have alternatives (when possible) for those who don't want to participate in everything. Lucky for us, our group participated in everything.

Bring a few Scouts

I was a Girl Scout, from Brownies to Senior. All these years later, I still live by the motto: Be prepared. I'm the one with the bottomless purse who can pull out an Ace bandage, a sewing kit, extra sweaters, a Sharpie, myriad medicines and 10-foot rope on a moments' notice. Scouts are priceless additions to any trip. And Girl Scouts always have cookies!

Bring a newbie or two

A sunset in the Sahara Desert in Morocco. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy).
A sunset in the Sahara Desert in Merzouga, Morocco. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson/The Points Guy).

Although seasoned travelers are nice as a known entity, sometimes the joy of someone seeing or doing something for the first time makes it magic for the whole group. And we had that, which just added to what was a great trip.

Leave room for everyone to be who they want

We have an impromptu dance party by the side of the road on our way to the Sahara Desert. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson)
We have an impromptu dance party by the side of the road on our way to the Sahara Desert. (Photo by Benét J. Wilson)

On a girls-only trip, you are no one's mother, no one's wife and no one's daughter. As such, you are free to be who you really are or want to be. You get reacquainted with yourself as a person. It is completely liberating not to have to consider taking care of someone else or comprising on activities (including the amount of shopping you do). You are free to act silly, dance on the side of a road, drink wine with abandon, flirt and laugh until your belly aches. Your responsibilities disappear for a brief time and you can feel as you did when you were a college student — but with the knowledge and appreciation that the years provide to know that this is a very special time.

Cherish the moments while you're in them

The author and Lauren A. captured in Chefchaouen, Morocco, known as The Blue City. (Photo by Cathy Heath)
The author and Lauren A. captured in The Blue City. (Photo by Cathy Heath)

I'll admit that I took my fair share of photos on this trip, as the kids say, "for the 'gram" (Instagram). But we saw more than our fair share of other people during our travels who were more focused on their Instagram feed rather than enjoying the magnificence that was Morocco.When will you ever have the chance to do things such as trek through the donkey parking lot at the market in Erfoud, have tea with a nomadic Berber family, walk through a garden designed by Yves Saint Laurent, watch a Sahara sunrise, ride on a camel or experience a hammam (a Moroccan spa)? So put down the camera or smartphone and live in the moment.

Bottom line

Taking a trip with 15 other women can be a dicey proposition in the best of circumstances. But the fact that all of us, with our different backgrounds, points of view and more, were able to enjoy 10 days together with no issues speaks volumes. We now have our own Facebook group and WhatsApp chat where we still chat about the marvelous trip. With proper planning, careful curating and a willingness to be open, you can have the same experience.

Featured image by (Photo by Trips To Morocco)

Top offers from our partners

How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
See all best card offers

TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023