I have been asked by multiple people in the last few days how we afford to travel full-time and how they can too. Read on to find out how we make all of this work.
No Sippin’ Martinis Poolside For This Momma
First, I need to say that I am not rich. Far from it actually. Without getting into specifics about income, let me explain some ways we afford to travel. Our budget is $3000 a month for everything. I have a hefty car payment, student loan debt, and recent credit card debt. It’s real y’all.
We are Homeless
We have NO home base. Basically, money we would normally spend on rent or a mortgage every month we use for our monthly accommodations. I was spending a fortune on rent in Austin.
I typically use Airbnb to find our rentals and absolutely love it! For example, I booked our place this month for $810 total. That includes utilities, internet, and of course a super cute furnished rental. Can you say WINNING?
Flying For Free People
A lot of our flights are FREE because of travel credit card reward points. I use the Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Chase Preferred. However, if you carry a balance, then it might actually not be free in the end.
I must confess that I do have a balance currently due to an expensive A** divorce but I am hoping to make it disappear soon. Worth every penny! Our rental car last week was free, our last two flights were free, and the one previous only cost $87. I fly on budget airlines and usually have great experiences despite what others may say.
Eiffel Tower Anyone? Nope!
We live like locals not tourist! That means we seek out free things to do like libraries, parks, and hiking. This also means that we can’t always see and do the most talked about things because it is not in the budget. If we can’t afford it, we don’t do it.
TV Dinners Anyone?
We try to cook at home instead of eating out. TRY is the key word here. This is something we definitely need to work on because we could save hundreds more each month if we did. The good thing about renting an Airbnb instead of getting a hotel room is being able to have a kitchen. It’s a lifesaver.
Stop Buying Sh*t
We don’t really buy stuff. We have nowhere to put it so we have to think each time before we buy. Everything we own fits into the back of our FJ Cruiser and we have a few larger items at a friend’s. When you don’t have a house, you can’t walk out of Target with a bunch of adorable home decor items you just bought. It works like magic.
I fill my cart up with everything I want and then walk around and put everything back on the shelves. Okay. Full disclosure. Sometimes I just leave the cart full of stuff and RUN! I know. I am terrible.
Gotta Make That Moolah
Full-time traveling, which is not for everyone, usually requires a way of making money on the road. You can look into Upwork for freelance gigs. You can teach English online if you have a bachelor’s degree with VIP kid. Start your own nomadic business. You can do home swaps, pet sitting, house sitting, Workaways, or Uber for extra cash. Barter for free rent. There are so many ways. It is unbelievable.
You can be like me and join the military, get jacked up, kicked out, and then receive veteran benefits. I don’t advise the latter. Trust me. Don’t sign on the dotted line.
Check Your Privilege
Keep in mind traveling is a privilege. Not everyone can do it. Those travel bloggers that state you can quit your job and travel the world are full of it. They are most likely getting paid to tell you that. Yes, some people can but I don’t agree that everyone can. Some people can barely afford food or a roof over their head. That is a FACT.
Explore your own city. Get lost on purpose. Leave the GPS at home. Look up free events. You don’t have to go to another state, city, or country to explore the world. Explore your own backyard.