My travel story is not the usual “I quit my job to travel”, I always been fascinated by different cultures and stunning landscapes so travel the World would be something predictable. I didn’t need to quit any job, I graduated and went on a InterRail, then lived in USA for one year (post coming soon) and worked my butt off to save enough money to travel Asia alone.
I found this book title pretty awesome, countless people come to me saying that they want to be like me and travel with no fear. This book is truly an inspiration source with “tools” that will show you that is not an easy path but it’s possible if you really want it, if it’s what makes you happy.
Kate beggins the book telling her personal story on how all started, she is straight, opens her heart and shares her feeling and hard times. This is a great beggining so readers can reflect in their situation and understand they aren’t the only ones with this desire.
Step by step the authour will teach you how to prepare yourself and plan for this life change move. Mostly of the time people blame on the money for not traveling so she will give you tips on how to get that money giving her own examples of how she sold her furniture she got for free in facebook groups. There are included other important money related tips that anyone can follow.
In the first part of the book you can read all kinds of situations like: Missing University or not having a degree, “I’m broke”, in case you need to go back home, your partner, friends and family… Looks like there’s a solution for each situation. I especially like when she says that you will cherish more your beloved ones company and have more quality time with them. So true! You will only truly understand this whenever you are away.
The Pre-Departure Checklist Chapter is full of important advice so you don’t have to deal with not so good surprises in the way. I think that “booking flights” could be included in this section as well but you’ll read about flights further in the book.
About the Jobs you can get while traveling, wow it’s a great list: Au Pair, Holiday Island Worker, English Teacher as a second language, Travel Blogger, Tour Guide, Holiday Representative and Ski Instructor. I would include: Fruit Picking Seasonal Jobs, Scuba Diving or Sky Diving Instructor and working in Pubs/Bars/Restaurants in Touristic Towns during Summer season. In each job you will find a clear description, websites and even things to avoid. I’m impressed with the 9 pages about being an Au Pair (looking after children). If you are thinking about being an Au Pair you definitly should get this book! It’s a complete guide, really. You even learn what to ask the family for a nice experience and to make sure it’s a good match.
When looking for accomodation Kate explained the importance of having contacts with local friends. She provides websites to make your life easier. Here I would include: Woofing, Workaway and Helpx. All great websites I recommend where you work few hours per day (like a part-time job) in exchange of food and accomodation (usually the things we spend more money while traveling). At the same time you are learning new skills, making new friends and feeling useful :)
There’re also advices on meeting people with websites you can sign up for meet ups. I think is also a good idea to stay in hostels if you are a shy person, since you can share a dorm (max. 4-6 beds) with other travelers who are looking forward to meet you. If you prefer to stay in a single room in the hostel is perfectly fine, you probably will cook and share recipes ideas or share a meal with others and usually there’s a living room where travelers play games and socialize.
The author dedicated a chapter for legal stuff like visas, taxes and insurance. I didn’t find this information revelant, 3 pages where you find out that you need to contact the embassies in the countries you’re traveling. I think this part depends on the rules of each country so it’s hard to tell what to do, you gotta do your homework. For insurance a lot of travelers use World Nomads.
You will learn how to eat, sleep and transport yourself in a cheaply way. In the car sharing Kate said that she recommends you to travel with a friend because is safer. It’s true, especially if it’s your first time but don’t necessarily. I did car sharing zillion times, mostly by myself and never had a problem. I prefer car sharing to bus/train because it’s cheaper (you share gas or toll costs), it’s quicker and wayyy funnier since you have someone to talk with. If you don’t feel like talking is fine too :D
Kate talked about Couchsurfing three times in this book. I’m a couchsurfer for 4 years and been using the website like crazy. It’s one of the best websites I ever join in! But it’s important to tell you that is changing. (Full Story Here) I also want you to understand that CouchSurfing is not a free bed/couch website, it’s a travelers community who exchange. So it’s not nice to be outside all day long, use wifi all the time and eat all fridge food. It’s nice to spend quality time with your host and why not cooking a meal from your country?
When Kate said that you aren’t expected to spend much time at home when you are using CouchSurfing or AirBnB (room) I had to desagree. Sometimes you just feel so tired from all walking the previous day that all you want is to stay home watching a movie. And Couch Surfers are perfectly fine with that, they want to make you feel at home. Mostly of the times they even have a spare key for you… When I couchsurfed in Tangier, Morocco, my host gave me the house key but he looked his room, that’s perfectly ok :)
* UPS – This book is well written, clear and neat english, anyone who knows basic english will understand everything. I also love the way is organized. It’s a total of 90 pages with only information that matters.
* DOWNS – I only found a not so good thing: Because Kate only traveled in Europe, all her examples are in Europe (especially in the transportation section), it would be nice to know how is in other countries in the World. Still, the book is very good for anyone who want to quit their job and travel the World!!
So what are you waiting for? Go get your copy now and do something about your happiness ;)