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The Story Behind Us: Samantha & Ryan

How did you meet and when did you both realize your love for travel?

We met on the first night of our freshman year of college, and realized our love for travel when we both spent two years on service missions for our church. During that time, Samantha was in Portugal and I was in Uruguay, and the only way we could communicate was through hand-written letters. We’ve both just always loved to travel!

Where was your first destination together and tell us about it?

Our first trip together was to San Francisco for “Sam’s birthday.” Little did she know we were there to get engaged. Right when we got there we did a few typical SF tourist activities and then headed over to Hawk Hill on the north side of the bridge. I let her guide me down to the cliff’s edge and then I got down on one knee and we’ve lived happily ever after.

How do you share your work on the road? Who does what?

Samantha takes basically all of the pictures, plans the activities, and does the writing while I do all the videography, driving, map reading, and drone operating.


How do you make decisions together for next destinations?

We have a big cork board map in our house and stare at it constantly. We have a “short-list” of places we want to go and are always scrounging the internet for the best deal. When we find it, we pounce on it.

Have you noticed any changes in the relationship since you started traveling together?

More than anything, traveling has given us a common passion and activity to gather around together. We get so excited to go places together and more often than not we find ourselves day dreaming about where we could possibly go next.

How do we cope with misunderstandings on the road?

This is true. Misunderstandings happen all the time and the biggest challenge is to stay on the same page about what our expectations are. Being respectful of the other’s dreams and communicating your own to the other is the only way to make it work!


What is the most beautiful moment you have experienced together while traveling?

While it is hard to beat waking up in the middle of the Serengeti, one of our favorite memories has to be running up all the stairs of the Eiffel Tower and making it to the top just in time to see it sparkle.

What do you like the most about traveling as a couple?

Always having something to look forward to and work on together. Also, when we leave we get to leave the world and all of its drama behind.

What do you like the least about traveling as a couple?

It takes a lot out of you and can be consuming. When you work as a team and things don’t go well it can make a dream trip become frustrating, but as long as you work together and enjoy the little moments, it is all worth it.


How do you keep the relationship spark alive on the road?

Being spontaneous but also thoughtful is key. Sometimes we get stuck in “travel mode” and are moving non-stop. When we are spontaneous we get to be excited about fun things together, but to take the time to plan a date on the go really keeps the spark alive.

What is one piece of advice you’d give to any couple wanting to travel together?

Make it a priority. If it isn’t a priority, it won’t happen. But if you promise to always make it a priority together, whether you’re dating, married, have kids, or whatever your situation is, you can do it.

Get to Know the Couple:
Samantha: @samanthaelooney
Ryan: @ryloon
Travel Instagram: @ourtravelpassport
Facebook: fb.com/ourtravelpassport

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