There are SO many of these kinds of blogs out there. Most of you know me personally though, and know that I’m not making this up. You’ll also know that I love travel so much that I make sacrifices for it.
How the decision came about
Harry and I are an Australian couple living and working in London. We’ve been here for about 1.5 years so far. I’ve been asking myself the question for some time about whether HR is the right career for me anymore. Or is it just that I want to be free before settling down?
This led to a conversation about when we want to move back to Australia. Harry turns 30 next year and we agreed it would be great to celebrate this milestone surrounded by our Australian family and friends. So! That means just over 1 year to squeeze in all the ‘must-do’ travel before settling down and having our OWN family. A conversation I can no longer avoid being in my 30s. Even Mum has started talking to me about freezing my eggs. No pressure.
How do you choose where to go?
I started to write a list of all the places I REALLY wanted to see and experience before having kids. Don’t get me wrong, I’m getting to grips with the idea that you can still travel with kids. But! I want to completely immerse myself in the culture and get lost without a crying baby or small child in tow. Who needs a hen’s party for their last night of freedom? I need a year long adventure!
Looking at the list, it becomes clear which places gravitate towards the top. It’s probably something you’ve always wanted to do but never found the right time. For me, that included volunteering on a wildlife project with the African Conservation Experience, something I’d applied for years ago and deferred to move to London instead.
For those of you with a partner, the list also helps guide a conversation. For us, we discovered that only I had my heart set on most of the places, with 1 or 2 being a shared interest. This meant some brave decisions! Lucky for me I have the most patient and understanding partner in the world and will be going on some of the adventures alone or with family and friends, and some with him.
Logistics, timing and money were also factors in my decision. I have a friend living and working in Cambodia until the end of the year. That means I have until December to visit her to have a local experience! It’s also a great stop over point on the way to Australia for a family wedding. And let’s face it, despite often rubbing a lamp and hoping a genie will pop out to grant my wish of lifelong travel which includes the money to pay for it, you can’t do it ALL! Well, in 1 year anyway. Not MY travel bucket list!
How do you pay for it?
If you’ve read my other blog “How I Afford to Travel, Live Overseas and Own a Home”, you’ll know that I make sacrifices for travel. I’ve also worked in a well-paid job for the past 15 months,16 by the time I leave the company. With a goal in mind of going on some big trips before returning to Australia, I’ve managed to save enough money for the initial 9 week adventure. Feel free to follow my journey! I’ll be travelling to Vietnam, Cambodia, Australia and South Africa.
You have to be realistic. And I would highly recommend putting together a budget to see if your plans are actually affordable. I know for me that cash reserves will be low post the 9 week adventure, so I’m already planning work options for a minimum 3 months early next year to save up for the next adventure! Have you been to Nepal, Sri Lanka and/or India? Tips welcome!
How do you make the leap?
Ask yourself these 3 questions:
- How badly do you want the experience?
- What would you regret if you had an accident and could never travel again?
- What have you got to lose?
And don’t worry if travel is not as important to you as family, your job or anything else you consider to be your ‘number one’. You can always just follow my adventures on www.hofftoexplore.com and I’ll do my best to make you feel like you’re there!