Even though mostly of my readers think I don’t want to have kids so I can go on with my travel lifestyle, the truth is that I want to have kids (biological and adoptive) since ever and can’t wait to share my travel adventures with them.
These series are a collection of interviews from full and part-time travelers who didn’t stop traveling just because they had kids, they simply decided to find ways to incorporate the new family members in this kind of lifestyle. Every first Monday of the month you can read a new interview from a different family. Funny that the first interview is live in Child’s Day :) Enjoy!
1- Hello! First of all I’d like to thank you to collaborate with your fantastic and inspiring words. Can you introduce us your family?
I’m Marina Kuperman Villatoro, Travel Experta, my family and I have been living as expats for over 12 years in Central America. My husband is Guatemala and I’m originally from USSR, but raised in the US. We are raising trilingual, multi-cultural kids and love to travel with them as much as possible.
2 – How was your life before you decided to travel as a lifestyle?
I’ve been traveling on and off since I can remember. Sometimes I’ve taken a couple of years at a time to travel, other times traveling only a couple of weeks to a couple of months at a time. Now that I have children and they are in school we travel mainly during their school breaks anywhere between one week to 2 months in a row.
It wasn’t really a decision. Travel is as necessary for me as drinking water. It’s just what we do.
4 – So far, which places you think are more kid friendly? Why?
What’s amazing is that a lot more places than people think are actually kid friendly. I lived in Manhattan for a little while, childless, and now whenever we visit there I can’t believe the amount of amazing things there are to do with kids there. They probably have always been there, but you never look for it.
So far, I have to say, the majority of places we have been to have fun things to do for kids.
5 – From all countries you have been, if you only could choose one country to live, which would be?
Well, we’ve been living in Antigua, Guatemala for a while and it’s a great place for a family. We also loved Belize.
6 – How do you travel? Do you rent an house? Go camping? Use bus or plane?
When we travel we mainly stay in hotels. We prefer unique hotels, if possible with a pool for the kids. We have always used a car and plane. Never traveled with kids on a bus, yet. But now that they are older, I would love to start that as well.
7 – Which kind of advices would you give a couple who have kids and want to travel badly but are afraid?
Traveling with kids is a whole new, amazing ball game. First of all, you have to totally slow down your travel since kids can only handle 1, at most, 2 activities per day with a lot of down time and always make sure to get your 3 meals in.
I think traveling with kids is the best experience for the whole family and a must do. Your kids will become open minded, non judgmental, world citizens and that is something that can not be taught just by sitting at home.
When you do venture out, don’t bring too much stuff, it’s tempting to bring all the things you think your kids will need, but they are totally fine with a few things for entertainment and their mama and papa.
8 – Is it possible for a single mom or dad to travel with their 3 children? In your opinion, which are the main obstacles and how to find solutions?
I’m not sure about 3 kids, but I have traveled with my 2 boys on my own and it was one of the best experiences of my life. I would recommend to have everything set up first. Know exactly where you will be staying. If you can plan some fun activities with them so that you can excite them about the trip as well.
We had a bad experience that my little boy got sick and had to go to the emergency room. But it turned out to be a good experience. My oldest became such a huge help, that it actually bonded all of us even more. And it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would at the hospital.
Very important – get travel insurance – especially medical.
9 – Do you have future plans? How is going to be your life the next 3 years? Do you want to keep traveling?
Always!!! We are now venturing on to Europe. Who knows for 3 years, but during this year we are planning on visiting the US and Europe and more travel in Guatemala.
10 – Why is travelling so important for you? What about your kids?
It’s kind of like asking why does a bird need to fly. It’s just part of who I am. I need it to survive and am training my boys that travel is essential to understanding and becoming part of our world.
11 – How do you manage your kids and school?
We only travel when they are out of school. I don’t homeschool.
12 – By your travel experience, what would you do differently?
I would travel more! I have been only doing at most one month trips with my boys, now it’s time for longer trips.
13 – How do you fund your travels? While travelling or saving?
I work online 100%. I run a travel blog and also sell travel packages for Costa Rica for families, couples and solo travelers at discounted rates.
Plus, I have an investment portfolio and have been learning to day trade so will be doing that soon as well.
14 – Anything else you’d like to add?
Please don’t let your fear of traveling with kids keep you from traveling and exposing your kids to the most important experience of their lives.
Plus, I fully and whole heartedly believe that travel bonds families together!
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