Some of us dream of traveling the world after retiring early but are apprehensive that just banking on retirement corpus may not be enough when you want to travel the world. Traveling is an expensive affair!
Naren and I also have such a dream!!! We are into slow travel- we dream of living in different countries around the globe for extended periods of time (at least 5 different countries in our lifetime). We started with Goa- as it keeps us close to our families and gives us a home advantage while we strengthen our financial position. In the future, we are tempted to move our base to other Asian countries first and then maybe Europe 🙂
A while back I was asked on Quora what can one do to retire early and travel the world and this blog post is inspired by that question. In addition to building a retirement corpus, our strategy to travel the world is by building a skill that can generate income by working from remote places and having some passive income.
As you know by now we ourselves are Digital Nomads living in Goa now for the last 4 years. We have created flexibility for ourselves to work from anywhere in the world. But we still have to work on optimizing some other ways that will allow us to travel and live in different countries.
If you have a similar dream and goal, read on:
1.Figure out your target retirement corpus that accounts for traveling the world:
Retiring early to live in your country is very different from retiring to travel or live in other countries. So to figure out how much money you need to retire and travel does some research and estimate the costs of travel to places you want to cover and average living costs in those countries. You do not have to be exact, do a rough calculation. One blog that will help you with this is Go Curry Cracker! – Retire Early. Travel the World. This couple retired in their 30’s and since then have traveled the world with their Kid.
They wrote a blog post on Costs of 4 months in Europe. Below is the snapshot of their total costs- which comes to ~ 19.4 lacs (@1 USD = 67 INR, in 2016). They optimize a hell lot while traveling… It is very reasonable for a family of 3 to cover 10 countries:
Once you have figured the approximate costs of travel to places you want to go to, especially in the first few years after early retirement you will have a more clear goal and confidence to s
2. Learn how to generate passive income:
The key to retiring early and travel is to create a stream of passive income that will keep generating sufficient cash to cover your monthly expenses partly/ fully while you travel. There are various ways to generate a stream of passive income, few examples are:
- Investing in rent generating real estate.
- Building a business that can generate income with little or no work- eg some people travel and blog/ vlog about their travel, which generates income. One such Indian success stories are Travel and Photography Website. You can also freelance for travel magazines or websites etc. If travel is your passion all this may not even seem like work to you.
- Airbnb your place or room at your house while you are traveling
- Become a silent partner in a business- Build a side business where you can become a silent partner in exchange for passive income once you retire to travel.
These are only a few examples, but some solid ones, start exploring these and see what suits your temperament.
We Personally have a mix of the following in our portfolio:
(1) have rent generating real-estate
(2) we have a blog that you are reading :-),
(3) we had an opportunity to invest our time in the past for a very small stake in a company.
2 & 3 are not generating income at the moment, but we are hopeful in the future some money will trickle from these endeavors. hey! remember every rupee counts.
We continue to keep looking for more such opportunities.
3. Learn to hack travel miles, hotel reward points through credit cards
Again a ton of money can be saved if you learn to use a travel rewards program, airline credit cards to earn free miles and free hotel nights.
We exchanged our old Citi credit card for Citi Premiermiles credit card this year, and have ~19,000 miles (10,000 miles were kind of starting bonus, 7,000 miles were rolled over from old credit card, ~ 2000 miles were earned in last three months). We pay an annual membership of INR 3000 for these cards and have other benefits and perks as a cardholder.
What will ~19000 miles get us? One person’s round-trip to our home town from Goa (Delhi/ Chennai). We are expecting that in a year we will have enough points to cover one round-trip for our family to visit our parents.
We have also optimized travel by staying in Airbnb, it brings down food costs considerably if you have access to the kitchen in your Airbnb.
We have yet to try the hotel credit cards/ reward program. But it is something we will try when we start traveling. If you have other ways to hack travel, do share them in comments.
4. Pick up skills to become a Digital Nomad
DIGITAL NOMADS ARE A TYPE OF
USE TELECOMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGIES
TO EARN A LIVING AND, MORE
GENERALLY, CONDUCT THEIR LIFE IN
A NOMADIC MANNER. SUCH
WORKERS OFTEN WORK REMOTELY
FROM FOREIGN COUNTRIES, COFFEE
SHOPS, PUBLIC LIBRARIES, CO-
WORKING SPACES, OR RECREATIONAL
VEHICLES. THIS IS OFTEN
ACCOMPLISHED THROUGH THE USE
OF DEVICES THAT HAVE WIRELESS
INTERNET CAPABILITIES SUCH
AS SMARTPHONES OR MOBILE
HOTSPOTS. SUCCESSFUL DIGITAL
NOMADS TYPICALLY HAVE A
FINANCIAL CUSHION. THE DIGITAL
NOMAD COMMUNITY HAS HAD
VARIOUS EVENTS ESTABLISHED TO
HOST MEMBERS OF IT, SUCH AS THE
NOMAD CRUISE. DIGITAL NOMADS
MAY VARY DEPENDING ON STATUS;
COMMON TYPES OF DIGITAL NOMADS
INCLUDE REFUGEES, AFFLUENT
PEOPLE, YOUNGER PEOPLE, AND
ENTREPRENEURS. PEOPLE WHO
BECOME DIGITAL NOMADS OFTEN DO
SO DUE TO POSITIVE REASONS, SUCH
AS FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE AND A
CAREER THAT ALLOWS FOR LOCATION
Naren is a software engineer, so for people like him sky is the limit but others like me without technical computer skills also have ample opportunities There are lots of online businesses that you can manage while traveling the world- like starting a blog or youtube channel, a online course about something you are passionate for, or an online store selling on Etsy or other e-commerce platforms.
Affiliate marketing is another avenue. When you travel you will experience a wide range of services and products most of them will have some sort of affiliate or referral program. You can make money by referring to the services you like on a blog.
These are a few things if you start working on can help you turn your dream of traveling the world into reality. That is our endeavor at least.
If you know some more ways that can help us and other fellow readers please share them in comments. We love to hear from you!
Previously published on Savinghabit.com.
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