Why I Travel
I have wanted to travel and experience the world for as long as I
can remember. Both my parents had traveled in their youth (my Dad is still a
traveler now), and it is something that is almost a rite of passage for New
Zealanders as we definitely have a culture where travel is important.
My Travel Frequency And Activities I Enjoy While On The Go
I am pretty much continuously traveling whether in the U.S. or
abroad as I have been nomadic for over six years now. My favorite travel
activity is hiking, and I also love trying different cuisines, road tripping,
city exploration, visiting historic sights, and swimming in lakes and oceans.
How I Choose The Next Travel Destination And Prepare For It
I usually just choose on a whim although I have a big list of all
the places I want to visit which seems to just keep getting longer! It’s really
important to return to places I love too so I do a mix of traveling to new
places as well as old favorites.
We are always traveling in some capacity but we spend between 6-8
months a year road tripping and working all over the US, then 4-6 months
traveling internationally, mostly over the U.S. winter.
I plan my trips to some extent, usually by researching the
general route then I book accommodation/excursions/transport as we go. For U.S.
road trips, we usually know a route we want to do but don’t usually book
anything, as we mostly free camp. We may book activities a few days out.
How I Pack For My TripsWe have a wardrobe and drawers in our RV so for U.S. travel it’s
easy - we don’t have to pack anything! For international trips, I usually
travel carry-on only, and depending on where I’m going, I pack my GRAYL water
filter, my travel Aeropress so I can make good coffee wherever I am, and lots
of dresses because they are lightweight and comfortable.
How I Find Locals And Travel Companions While Traveling
I still stay in hostels on some of my trips and that has been a
great way to meet travel companions - especially if I am traveling alone and
staying in dorm rooms. I have also used Couchsurfing and work exchanges to meet
locals, as well as hitching and ridesharing.
One Of My Most Memorable Travel Experiences
One of my favorite experiences of exploring with a local is when
I was on tiny Grand Manan Island in New Brunswick, Canada and I put my thumb
out to hitch. Straight away I was picked up and it turned out to be the Mayor
of the island, who then drove me all over the island, telling me local stories
and about the history of the island.
We ended up driving around for nearly three hours and I tried to
give him something for his time but he wouldn’t accept anything - such a great
experience and I learned so much more about Grand Manan Island than I would have
Challenges I Faced When I Started Traveling And Living Abroad
I was scared to get started with traveling and living abroad so
my first step was moving from New Zealand to Australia when I was 21 with a
friend that I convinced to come with me. From there, my best friend and I moved
to London and then my travels really began. I realized that travel wasn’t so scary
after all and it got a lot easier.
Really, the only thing that was holding me back was fear but I
overcame it and did it anyway.
Sacrifices I Made To Pursue Full Time Travel
I don’t own a home, I don’t have a lot of money, I’ve lost
friends (but gained many others) - all sacrifices I was willing to make and I
have no regrets.
Biggest Challenges To Manage A Digital Nomad Lifestyle
The biggest challenge was to know how to get started and actually
find remote work. I was lucky that I had a background as an Executive Assistant
which translates to being a Virtual Assistant, and that I had been running my
own travel blog for a couple of years so I had experience with everything
related to running that too.
I did some work with friends, to begin with, to get some remote
work experience and since then I have done a variety of freelance jobs as well
as making some money off my own site.
Why I Started My Blog
I had been wanting to start a travel blog for a while because I
enjoy writing and I wanted to share my experiences and tips after years of
traveling. I love helping people realize their own travel dreams.
My Budget Travel Secrets
Cook meals when you can rather than eating out all the time
because it is usually cheaper, stay in hostels over hotels, do work exchanges
through Work Away or Help X to get a more local experience without spending
much money, travel carryon only to cut down on bag fees.
Countries I Have Been To And My Bucket List
I have been to 64 countries over 17 years of travel and living
abroad. I always have new countries or new areas of countries that I am dying
to go to - Nepal, Patagonia, and Japan are at the top of my list right now.
Traveling overland through Mexico, Central and South America is
still one of my biggest adventures and was some of the most challenging travel
I have done but so rewarding too.
How I Manage My Work, Family And Travel Simultaneously
It can be hard to balance it all and I am always working on this.
If I am feeling burnt out from traveling too fast and working on the road I try
to stay somewhere a while to recharge. In regards to family, we visit Colorado
frequently to see American family, and I try to get back to New Zealand once a
year to visit family there.
Advice For Those Who Aspire To Travel As A Full Time Digital Nomad
Save money to have as a safety net first and try getting some
remote work while still working in your regular job so you have a way of making
money when you start out. Start out traveling slow to get the hang of traveling
and working remotely and to avoid burnout.
Things I Wish I Had Known When I Started Traveling Solo
Although I travel a lot with my husband these days too, solo
travel is still so important to me. I wish I had started traveling solo earlier
and had not let fear delay doing it.
Lessons I Have Learned Over 16 Years Of Traveling
I have learned that it rarely ever turns out to be as scary as you
think it will be as our minds tend to always think up the worst-case scenarios
with travel - and life in general.
Other inspiring stories to read!