Our plans to backpack round SE Asia (Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia and Malaysia) as a group of 4 have changed as we have added one more person to our itinerary.
Is 5 people too large a group to travel as? We are worried that it will make finding accommodation and transport etc problematic...
#1 gandhiji has been a member since 25/8/2009. Posts: 3
Why would that be a problem? I think it will allow you to save on tours, taxis etc, more bargaining power and the more the merrier!
Only problem i guess would be one person would have to sleep in a room alone...
#2 furneburner has been a member since 5/9/2009. Posts: 180
A larger group is good. That way if a couple of you want to go and see something the others aren't interested in it is not as big a deal as if you were travelling in a pair. I had a ball travelling around with 6 other people, we were rarely all in the same place at the same time, but would break off into groups of two or three and then agree to meet up in some distant town in two or three days time.
#3 KazAussie has been a member since 18/7/2009. Posts: 221
There are benefits to groups such as the bargaining power and you can also have someone to split room costs with. Take advantage of that because you can get nicer accomodation than you would if you were going solo.
I've done SE Asia alone twice and with other people three times. My advice it to enjoy your group and also enjoy some alone time. When you travel alone you meet all sorts of new people. However it's much harder to meet nice people in the very small towns that see little tourism. Some nights you find yourself wishing for someone to have a beer with.
Anyway enjoy the group. There is certainly no financial disadvantage of traveling in a group of five!
I wouldn't concern yourself with things like transport and places to stay. What would concern me would be the personalities of each person in the group, and the group dynamic as a whole.
If there's one or two who are impatient, short-tempered, who don't like to eat what the others like to eat, who don't have the same interests, etc. then trouble is almost guaranteed at some point, especially during a big trip.
Like Mac, I prefer to travel alone or with one of two very good friends who I've met traveling in the past, and for similar reasons, too. I don't like to compromise, and don't enjoy the process of trying to get a group of people all on the same page. It can be exhausting and frustrating.
However, as noted above, there are some advantages, especially financial ones. I guess it can be nice to share experiences with others, as well.
If the original 4 were two couples then the fifth person may feel a little bit "extra" sometimes but 5 people in itself is no problem, probably even better than four. More options for splitting up into 2 groups if you want to do different things.