we’re so humbled that we’re within a stone’s throw of 100 followers on twitter within just six weeks of starting this whole story-telling mission here at our next life. thank you to everyone who is reading us here and following us there!
we love the immediacy of twitter, and the ability to connect with so many of you so quickly. we follow a lot of personal finance bloggers, and a lot of travel bloggers. and while some personal finance bloggers talk about saving in service of travel, and some travel bloggers talk about how to save money or afford traveling, there aren’t too many folks we’ve found (yet!) who are doing what we’re doing: focusing now on saving big so that we can travel a lot without necessarily having to be digital nomads or whatever the buzzword will be in the future. but let’s assume that everyone wants to travel, and that the travel bloggers are in the travel now camp, while the personal finance bloggers (and everyone else, probably) are in the travel later camp.
where are we?
truthfully, we’re in both camps. we travel a little bit now, like one big trip a year plus a few little ones, and we’re saving like crazy people for a much more travel-filled future. like weeks and months at a time of travel, like we blogged about a few weeks back. it could end up being a pipe dream, depending on how much we’re able to save, and how the markets do, but we want to be able to travel as much as many travel bloggers without having to hustle for the income to support the journey. maybe it’s how old we are (mid-thirties), and how long we’ve worked without a break in demanding professions (current average is 15+ years), but work-filled travel doesn’t sound like fun. fortunately, we believe that by working hard for a few more years, we’ll be in a position to make this dream happen in real life.
but at the same time…
it is super hard to read the posts of so many incredible travel bloggers, and to see their photos on twitter and instagram, and not want to drop everything now and buy a couple of round-the-world plane tickets. that’s a huge temptation all the time, for everyone, but not gonna lie — it gets harder as you get better at saving, and know that what you have saved up already could support you for a loooooong time, especially in developing countries. (but not long enough to count as real retirement, and that’s why you gotta keep going with the working and the saving.) we were recently scrolling through comments on a blog we read from time to time, and saw that, in response to a comment along the lines of “this looks great, i’ll add it to the bucket list,” the author basically said, “screw bucket lists. just book your ticket.”
and it’s true. bucket lists tend to get longer, not shorter. and at a certain point they become mostly academic, not truly about action. and that’s not the life we want for ourselves. we want to do things more than we talk about doing them. so it’s tough. we’d love to be traveling more now. but we feel really fortunate to be in a position to save, and to have gotten great info about how to make early retirement a reality. and with the finish line in sight, it feels like a pretty good trade-off: work hard a little longer for a long life of payoff, rather than quitting now and jeopardizing our retirement dream in exchange for just a few more years of travel.
what’s your travel approach? travel now, or travel later?