I know you’ve seen or heard of someone who’s quit their lackluster job to travel the world. Perhaps their story inspired you, and you live vicariously through their epic social media posts & pictures from all over the world. You think it would be awesome to do something similar, and yet you’ve never truly entertained the idea, shooting it down as not feasible or possible for your life. This is where you’re wrong.
Quitting your job to travel is much easier than you might think.
I’d be willing to bet that the most difficult part is getting over your own personal fears and finally just going for it. It’s tough to leave the security and comfort of your established life behind. I’ve been there – I know it’s freaky.
“Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will.” – Suzy Kassem
Quitting your job and leaving everything behind to travel is extremely scary.
I get it. It’s risky, uncertain, and your friends & family will likely show hesitation or make you feel guilty for wanting to pursue a different path – a much different path.
That being said, following your heart and trusting your intuition when deciding on a life choice of this measure is extremely important.
Your inner guide knows where you need to go. It’s whispering quietly inside you – you just need to listen, and heed the call.
After a year of saving and planning, Brian and I quit our unfulfilling jobs to travel indefinitely. After 7 months of travel, we’ve spent a shockingly small amount of money, and plan to continue living our unconventional, nomadic lifestyle with no end in sight [Might I add, I was living nearly paycheck to paycheck before I decided to buckle down and save. I went from practically broke with no plan, to having more money saved than I’ve ever had, facing the biggest adventure of my life, in less than a year.].
It takes budgeting, discipline, conscious spending, and smart saving, but it is SO possible, and so much more accessible than you think. We are living proof!
Here are 3 reasons why quitting your job to travel is much easier than you think:
1: Vacation travel is much different from long term travel
Most people travel as a vacation from their job, or an escape from their “real life.” This type of traveler goes absolutely all-out on their vacations, trying to pack a year’s worth of relief from the stress of sitting at a desk job they hate into 10 short days in paradise. Hence the reason why they book the week-long resort stays and vacation packages. This sort of travel is incredibly expensive, but for them, it’s worth it. To put this in perspective, I once spent more for 7 days at a resort in Hawaii than I did for nearly 2 full months of travel throughout Central America. *sigh*
Long term travel is a life choice. It is a complete change in your lifestyle, and therefore much different from a vacation. Yes, you’ll find yourself in picturesque landscapes and beautiful beaches that are sometimes right next to those vacationers… but you’ll be there for a fraction of the cost that they pay. You’ll exchange your usual daily life (including the bills, rent, car payment, etc) for expenses on the road (mainly accommodation, transport, and food). Currently, Brian and I are spending less each month traveling & living abroad than we used to spend on rent & bills back home.
2. Work exchange & volunteer opportunities are everywhere!
Seriously, everywhere. There are endless hostels, schools, retreat centers, farms, personal projects, etc that are seeking volunteers and will give you a free place to stay (and sometimes food!) in exchange for a few hours of work each week. This varies widely to fit each host’s needs.
We’ve stayed at a few places where we worked from 7-20 hours each week in exchange for full room & board (meaning we literally spent zero money unless we wanted an extra snack or something). Sometimes, the ‘work’ looked like painting a mural, teaching a yoga class on the edge of a gorgeous lake, or hanging out in a hammock writing a blog while watching reception for a hostel.
This sort of ‘work’ rarely feels like work. It certainly feels less like work than being stuck inside a cubicle, counting down the minutes until the end of the workday.
3. With the proliferation of wifi, remote work is extremely accessible and feasible.
We are fortunate enough to live in an extremely connected world, thanks to the Internet. This means that with a little determination, discipline, and focus, you can find online work opportunities to continue to fund your travels on the road.
There is an infinite array of different types of work that can be done online. Chances are, you can find a way to integrate an interest, passion, or skill that you already have into some sort of work opportunity using the Internet. An online freelancing website such as Upwork is a great place to start. Why not get excited about new projects while fulfilling your travel dreams?
Yes, remote work is still work, but being able to work on your own time schedule creates a considerable amount of freedom. Additionally, working from a hammock at your beach hostel is clearly more appealing then resenting each day at your desk job.
If your current job is leaving you uninspired and unexcited about your life, why are you continuing to spend your time and energy there?
If you want to quit your job to travel the world, opportunities are everywhere – you only need to quit making excuses and get serious about it!
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Also, check out ‘Preparing for Our Transition to a Life of Freedom’ for a detailed description of how we planned, budgeted, and saved as we prepared for our new life of freedom.