A question we get asked a lot is, “How can you afford to travel permanently?”.
We didn’t win the lottery (I wish!), we didn’t receive a massive inheritance from a long lost uncle nor did we rob a bank (as tempted as I have been!). No, it all came down to hard work and sacrifice.
Both Michael and myself worked in professional roles in our ‘old life’ so were able to put a chunk of our salaries away each month (one of the benefits of being a DINK – double income no kids).
However that’s just part of it. This is how we saved to become permanent travelers.
We made a massive change to our lifestyle. We stopped having dinner out. We stopped buying shoes (ok that was just me). We stopped buying lunch at work (there is nothing wrong with a warm ham and cheese sandwich that’s been sitting in your handbag since 7am!). We stopped going out every weekend. We even reduced our cable bill by subscribing to less channels. We ensured our electric bills would be lower by being completely anal with turning everything off when it wasn’t in use.
Yes, our life was a bit dull during this process but we didn’t care because we saw the bigger picture. We saved a lot just because of these small changes.
This was one of my favorite parts because not only did it help fill the money tin but it also felt very cleansing (literally and spiritually). As we were getting closer to our departure date, we started selling off everything we owned; car, furniture, nik naks… anything we could. We sold it on Gumtree (think Craigslist), to friends, in garage sales and any way we could. Every time an item left our possession I didn’t feel remorse or regret, I felt excited and inspired… and alive!
We had a savings account already, which we established a little while back; call it an emergency fund if you will. We didn’t know what it was going to be for but it was there and building slowly for the future.
When the decision to leave was made we had a head start because of our savings account. But it certainly wasn’t enough for what we wanted so we needed to add to it.
So every month, we paid our bills and did what we had to do with our wages and then every other cent went into the savings account. Once it was in there, we didn’t touch it, no matter how tempted we were. So as we saw the balance grow each month, so did our determination.
I am an avid believer that if you really want something you can get it. Yes, it may take time but if you believe in it and work hard, it will happen.
You may want to leave tomorrow to become a nomad like us but it may not be realistic. Set yourself realistic goals and just make it happen. Don’t let fear get in your way. Don’t let others put you down. Just focus on what you want and MAKE IT HAPPEN!
Have you got any other ideas how you can save for travel?