It was exactly one week into that trip back in 1999, as I celebrated the Millennium at Angkor Wat in Cambodia, when I became addicted to world travel. So addicted in fact, that the idea of returning home was suddenly not an option at all.
I wanted to soak in more of the world, learn as much as possible and meet as many new people as I could.
Therefore, I canceled my plans to return home and decided to become a permanent traveler.
Great plan, right? Well, the main problem was that I barely had any money. And that was a big problem.
Taking this challenge head on, I used a combination of hard work, determination and a refusal to accept anything less than the achievement of my goal to start figuring things out. I talked to everyone I met (there wasn’t much internet back then!) and tried to learn how others were traveling long-term and funding those travels.
Over time, I somehow managed, piece by piece, to create the nomadic life I envisioned.
I found work, saved some money, found more work, traveled at the same time, worked on cruise ships, saved more money, started working online, kept traveling and on and on (more details can be found in my post How I Can Afford My Life of Travel). The key was that I always kept my eyes open for the next opportunity that could help me move forward.
It wasn’t easy and there definitely isn’t any ‘snap of the fingers solution’ to creating such a lifestyle…
But at the same time, it can be done. It really can.
Today, I’m still constantly traveling the world. I take approximately 60 flights per year, I don’t even have a home base and I live out of my suitcase.
The thing is, though, I’ve never traveled to simply check countries off a list. If that was the case, I would have stopped a long time ago!
Instead, I prefer to focus on the human interactions and the life lessons learned along the way. Those incredible aspects of travel are what keeps me going after 18+ years.