LIVE on the Road
Greetings from the West Coast! It’s been crazy around here lately. Ever since the new season started, I’ve been back and forth across America, searching for homes, celebrating significant birthdays and working on a few incredible projects I’ve had fun being a part of over the last months.
One of these projects literally went LIVE a couple days ago in San Francisco in the form of a day-long course on “Becoming a Travel Hacker” that I co-produced for CreativeLIVE with my long-time friend, co-traveler and marathon running partner, Chris Guillebeau. (If you’re one of the 12,000 aspiring travel hackers who watched and found your way here: Welcome! So glad to meet you.)
Over the past years I’ve shared lots of stories here about my 20 years of travel across the globe, yet I haven’t ever shared much about how this has been financially possible- until this week.
I’m not independently wealthy, living off a trust fund, or even have a big bank balance to give away. There are two simple reasons why I’ve been able to travel to more than 115 countries and counting:
- I figured out how to live and work overseas.
- I mastered the art of airlines miles
For the past 18 years I’ve been a humanitarian worker- sometimes paid and sometimes volunteer. Many of you have asked for advice on how to a volunteer on a vacation, or find full-time work abroad. I’ll write more about this in the weeks to come. Stay tuned – and leave a comment if you have specific questions on the topic.
Mastering miles was a hobby my sister and I picked up as bored, un-accompanied teen travelers flying between divorced parents long before I ever left America for the first time. When I got hooked on seeing the world after my first trip abroad and was trying to figure out ways I could get plane tickets as a broke college student, I recalled those early days of collecting boarding passes from other passengers in the airport in attempt to get more miles than my sister (you can’t do this anymore). I flew on my first mileage award ticket to Europe in 1994, and ever since then I’ve been working on perfecting the art of flying free (and in fancy class) whenever possible.
I love helping people play the points game too. If you want to know more about the art of getting points and miles to see the world- check out these two resources that I’ve been working on with Chris over the last year at UnconventionalGuides: The Frequent Flyer Master and the Travel Hacking Cartel. And if you didn’t watch already you can also check out the recording from our 7-hour long CreativeLIVE course.
Happy travels. I hope you’re enjoying today’s journey wherever you may be.