Roommates can become your best friend. But living with someone can also ruin friendships. Having a roommate isn’t always easy.
If you travel for business, you might need to share a room or apartment. More often than not, this will be someone whom you’re not particularly close to. This can be tough.
You may not be able to choose your roommate, but you can choose how you handle the situation. Here are some ways to ensure that your roommate experience is a good one.
Give Yourself Space
You might not have the ability to choose where you’re staying.
Even in a small space, boundaries can be set. If you have to share a small room, make it clear where your things go.
Don’t disrespect your roommate’s space. You don’t want people going through your things. Neither does your roommate.
Usually, you’ll have some flexibility when traveling. You can choose to stay in a hotel or apartment. If your trip is longer, you’ll probably want to select a larger apartment or hotel suite.
It’s best to use a booking service like Hotel Engine. They specialize in business travel and will ensure that your individual needs are met.
When things go wrong, a booking service will take care of the problems for you.
- Communicate Your Needs
Set your boundaries, needs, and expectations in the beginning.
Tell your roommate when you normally go to bed and wake up. If you have trouble sleeping, tell them.
If you need a lot of time to yourself, ask if it’s ok to have the room or apartment to yourself for a few hours.
When it comes to groceries, tell your roommate what you like to eat. Go over any dietary restrictions from the beginning.
Everyone has different standards when it comes to cleanliness. No two people will organize a kitchen the same way.
If dirty dishes in the sink or laundry piles bother you, let your roommate know.
Make sure that everyone does their fair share of chores.
No one enjoys tasks like doing the dishes or cleaning the toilets, but someone has to.
If you hate cooking, offer to do something else on a regular basis.
Come up with a schedule. Alternate who does which chores on what day. Changing things up every now and then isn’t a bad idea.
Make sure costs are split as well. Laundry detergent and cleaning supplies aren’t cheap.
Be clear about who pays for which amenities.
Some roommates find it best to split grocery costs 50/50. If your roommate has more expensive tastes than you, that won’t work out.
Try to make things as even as possible.
Being on equal terms with your roommate is good.
Spend Time Together
No one wants to live with a stranger.
You don’t have to be best friends with your roommate, but there’s no reason not to get to know each other.
The best way to get to know each other is to do things together.
Maybe plan a weekly roommate dinner or movie night. Here’s a list of some great recipes from Taste of Home to try out.
Ask your roommate what they are interested in and learn about their hobbies.
If you’re traveling to a new place, explore some of the sights together.
Even if you know the location well, there’s always something new to discover.
Everyone is different.
There will be things your roommate does differently from you.
You may not like some of these things, but why not give them a chance? Maybe you’ll find out you do like the type of food your roommate likes to cook.
Or maybe you’ll discover that the music they listen to actually is for you.
Just because you have different interests or tastes doesn’t mean you can’t live together.
If you find that your differences aren’t compatible, there’s nothing wrong with opting for a new roommate on your next trip or moving out.
But you’ll never know if you don’t give it a chance.
Roommate conflicts happen, and the best way to handle them is being prepared and flexible. These tips will help you do just that.
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