The term “nomad” has been taken over by scrappy young travelers. They sleep on couches and seem to fly by the seat of their pants.
They can pack all their belongings into a backpack and are completely flexible. We are not that.
What are lifestyle travelers?
Lifestyle travelers are established professionals taking their lifestyle on the road.
We’re not stripping life to the bare minimum. We’re not sleeping on couches, we’re not eating top ramen.
We’re translating our static lifestyle to a mobile one and working to maintain the same professionalism, connection to family and friends, and level of comfort as we would if we lived in a single place.
Travel as a lifestyle
Being a lifestyle traveler doesn’t mean that we are constantly traveling. It just means that we aren’t tied to a single location.
My husband and I have three home bases: Idaho where he is from, Virginia where I am from, and New York where we’ve spent the past five years and where his career is still tied.
We spend a few months in each spot every year and travel to new places for a month at a time outside of that. We’re kicking off 2021 with three months in Hawaii.
Traveling for a month at a time lets us get to know a place a little better, makes for more consistent performance at work, and is more cost effective than quick hops (you can usually find deals for 10-20% off lodging when you get above the 28 day mark).
Turning your stationary lifestyle into a travel lifestyle
It’s commonly accepted that as we enter adulthood we settle down. We may settle down in houses, in apartments, with partners, with pets. Regardless of how we do it, most of us accumulate and build on a stationary life year after year.
There’s nothing wrong with a stationary lifestyle. It’s comfortable, it allows for easy relationship building and provides a great environment for growing a career. But life doesn’t have to look that way.
Your life, your career, your significant other, even your pet can all thrive while traveling too.
Living nomadically doesn’t have to be uncomfortable or stressful or cheap. With a little planning you can translate your current budget to comfortable full time travel.
Financial considerations of lifestyle travel
If you’ve built your life in one place, you probably think of travel as expensive and indulgent. How can you reasonably travel all of the time?
It’s not as expensive as you think.
We all stick to a budget all the time anyway. As we build our static lifestyles, we make room for a house/apartment, home decor/necessities, gas/electric/water, car/Ubers/public transportation, groceries/restaurants, entertainment. It really adds up.
All of that money that we pour into our static lifestyle can be repurposed into a full time travel budget. Even the travel that you were doing before – weekend trips, family visits, holidays travel – all gets rolled into that one budget since you don’t need to set aside any special budget for your vacations anymore.
Once you free up expenses from your static lifestyle – get rid of the apartment and car – and add in your regular travel budget, you’re probably working with a big monthly budget that can now support your travel lifestyle instead.
Creating comfort while traveling full time
Ok, so it’s technically possible but what will life be like for you on the road?
No, you don’t have to sleep on couches, no you don’t need to eat noodles every night. No, you won’t just be traveling to the middle of nowhere.
Want to figure out what it might look like for you?
As an easy trial run, take your rent and car payment and see what kind of Airbnb you can get for that much for a month in your dream destination.
It probably doesn’t have the comforts of home, but for a dream like Hawaii/Japan/Paris, can you work with that?
One consideration to keep in mind is that you’ll likely split your time between expensive and cheap locations so you can raise the budget a little for the dream spots if you can make up for it with your cheap locations. For example, when we visit family, our rent for the month is usually half what we’d pay in NYC. We’re using those extra savings on rent (something you could never do in a stationary lifestyle!) to increase our budget while we’re in Hawaii.
Already living a travel lifestyle? Want to get started? Drop a comment to say “hello”
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