Do you read travel blogs every day and dream of the long term travel lifestyle? Would you give everything to pack up your backpack and set out to travel the world for six months, a year, two years or even longer?
Traveling long term is an amazing adventure and it will bring you many unforgettable experiences. However, there are also sacrifices that you will need to make in order to stay on the road for this long. Whether or not long term travel is the right lifestyle for you will depend on whether or not you feel that these sacrifices are worth it for the adventures you will be having.
Missing Friends and Family
In my opinion this can be one of the hardest parts of the long term travel lifestyle. No matter where you are in the world you are usually very far away from the people that you love. You miss out on Christmases, birthdays, parties, weddings and other special events.
Although you can keep in touch with Skype and stay connected to your friends and family back home, not attending those special events is a sacrifice you will have to make with long term travel.
Not Having “Stuff”
When you live on the road permanently like we do, all of your stuff must fit in a backpack or a suitcase. This can have its disadvantages. I can’t count the number of things I have loved in shops as I have traveled the world but not been able to buy because I didn’t have room for them in my bag. As a girl it will be especially hard to adjust, because you are likely used to having an entire closet stuffed with different outfits to choose from.
Not Having a Conventional Career Path
Another aspect to the long term travel lifestyle is that you will likely have to give up on the idea of the conventional career path. In order to travel the world for several years at a time, you will either have to find a career which you can take on the road with you or apply for working holiday visas and work in the countries that you visit.
Although it is possible to build your career while travelling, you need to accept that you might have to take a job outside of your field in another country just to earn enough money to keep going. A better way to look at it is that you are not traveling to work, you are working to travel and these experiences are all part of the adventure.
An Uncertain Future
When you have a life of long term travel, you can say goodbye to ever being able to predict where you are a year from now. Travel plans need to be flexible and you will never be able to predict what will happen when you set foot in a new country.
However, the plus side of this is that your life will be filled with adventures, excitement and new experiences.
Long term travel is a lifestyle that doesn’t work for everyone and while Lee and I love it, other people might find it infuriating and would prefer to take shorter holidays instead of living permanently on the road. It all comes down to what you value most in life and what sort of things you are willing to sacrifice to create your ideal lifestyle.