We had a plan to travel permanently for years. It started when we made a three-week trip to Europe where we launched Sisters That Stray, and basically everything we’ve worked towards since then has been building up to this moment.
Step 1: Set an intention
Take some time to tune into your truest desire. Think about what your real purpose is for travel. Do you want to learn a new language? Are you looking to connect with your heritage? Do you want to explore the world as a solo traveler? Claim it as your truth. Make it clear, and write it down.
Our intention is to give ourselves the space to roam, explore and experience freely. We knew we wanted to live in Costa Rica for a bit and then travel through Central and South America, so we decided Spanish school would be a good place to start. After that, we're committing 100% to our life motto: follow the vibe.
Step 2: Pick a date to leave
The second step is committing to your desire. When you choose a date, it's like giving yourself a deadline. And from that point on, you can begin taking steps towards making your desire a reality.
On July 17, we booked our one-way ticket to Costa Rica for September 13. That's when it became our reality. We made a list of everything we needed to do before we left, which made it feel achievable and much less overwhelming.
Step 3: Downsize
After purchasing our one-way tickets, we began lining up the Denver-based bills we'd need to cancel, everything from our utilities to our gym memberships. We asked our landlord for a month-to-month lease and began taking steps towards downsizing. We knew when we left Denver to drive down to our parents house in Florida, we would only be taking with us what could fit in our Kia Soul – which was basically only the clothes we decided to keep and a few personal items.
To prepare, we gradually gave as much our furniture and kitchen items to friends and the rest to Goodwill. We started digging through our piles of clothes to figure out what we wanted to give away and what we could to keep. The last week of July, we cut down on our work schedules to give ourselves the time to completely clear out our one-bedroom apartment that had been our home for the last two years.
Step 4: Plan your finances
Short-term travel – Do you want to live on your savings and not worry about a job?
Then set a savings goal.
Growing our brand as Sisters That Stray Together will be our full time job while traveling, but we still worked hard to have some money put away in savings as a cushion. Depending on how long and where you plan on traveling, set a savings goal ASAP. There are several really practical apps out there to help you set and meet your savings goals. A few we like are:
Mint – We use this app regularly. You can connect all your bank accounts and credit cards, and then use your past spending reports to create and easily track your budget.
Cleo – We've been seeing this new app around lately, and it looks really cool. It's basically an AI chatbot that acts as a replacement for your banking apps. You can ask it for insights into your spending across multiple accounts and credit cards and get proactive updates.
Digit – This app calculates what you can save based on your income and spending patterns, and puts that amount in an FDIC-insured Digit account. It typically makes 2-3 savings transfers per week. But the downside is that because the amount taken out of your checking account can vary, overdrafts can happen.
Long-term travel– Here are some options for working abroad.
Workaway – This is a program that works with families and organizations throughout the world where you can stay for free in return for a few hours of volunteering.
Housesitting – There are opportunities all over the world to look after a house and pets just like you were at home. Make new friends with people on the other side of the world, and travel cheaper, further and for longer. It’s affordable, because by house-sitting you don’t pay for accommodation.
English teacher – You can find jobs in almost any country teaching English. All you need is to get a TEFL Certification (you can even do it online!). A job teaching English abroad is a fantastic way to live overseas and get paid to travel the world.
Step 5: Take the leap
... and never look back.
Regardless of whether you love your current life or you're unhappy in it, this is always the toughest part. It will feel uncomfortable to let go of your sense of security, but this is when your intention that you set is so important. Revisit it over and over again to give yourself the courage and confidence you need to take this step.