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The Ask All Tell All’s of Nomadic Life: Financing Your Fun

Are you interested in pursuing a gypsy lifestyle? Traveling the world professionally? Constantly making new friends and exploring new places? Welcome to the club!

Don’t know where to start or how it can be done? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. In fact, I am constantly receiving e-mails and comments from people asking how they too can pick up and go.

Often times, I feel like its difficult for people to fathom how I lead my life. It’s like I’m constantly trying to act out the season finale of Lost. No-one gets me.

This is partly my fault. I just kind of started this journey and continued to blab about it without much regard for others looking to travel. Sorry about that.

So this is the beginning of a series of blogs elucidating the best kept secret of full-time travelers: how they manage to make it happen. You’ve asked for it, and now I’m giving it to you, starting with the foundation: finances. You can send me a thank-you card later. =)

The Ask All Tell All’s of Nomad Life with The Nomad Grad

In This Blog: Financing Your Fun

How do you fund your travels?

This is probably the most common question that floods my inbox. No, I do not sell my body or drugs. I don’t have a trust fund, no rich relative to back me, and I don’t work at a strip club. The real answer? I’ve adapted the nomad lifestyle by working extremely hard and budgeting accordingly.

Everyone has priorities in life. One of mine is to travel extensively. I set goals (i.e. I want to go to Fiji and live there for a month) and determine how much money, time, and effort it will take me to achieve said goal. I then work towards it however I can. Yes, it really is that simple.

I enjoy the flexibility of picking up and moving where I want when I want. Because this is my choice and preference, I am okay working in a multitude of fields to make the money I need to cover expenses. I’ve worked on productions, modeled, sold articles to magazines and newspapers, done personal assistant work, ghost blogging, website consulting, social media marketing, pet-sitting, etc. I also try to pick up work wherever I’m going. I don’t mind doing these things because 1) I feel that it’s really important to constantly remind myself there’s no job that’s below me, 2) I never know who I will meet and network with, and 3) It’s an adventure I haven’t had yet. I’ve now been an equestrian catch-rider, dance instructor, and lion tamer, all because I said, ‘yes,’ to work I never considered before.

The Upside: I get to travel where I want to for the amount of time I choose.

The Downside: I don’t have a full-time job and do not have the security or benefits this provides. For me this is okay because my life is all about adventure. This may not work for you.

But it seems like no matter how hard I work or budget, I never have enough money to buy a plane ticket and go where I want to go (even just on vacation). What gives?

That’s because you’re not budgeting correctly. There’s always a give and take in life. Because I don’t have a full-time job or that bi-weekly paycheck dependability, I’ve gotten really good at being able to stretch a dollar. Sometimes I have tons of work and don’t need to worry about it. Other times I do. So I figured understanding how little I could actually live on was essential for me being able to survive, and budgeting needed to become second nature.

I started by observing my ‘natural’ spending habits for a few weeks to see what I considered necessary daily purchases (groceries, dinners with friends, daily coffees, new shoes, music, blah blah blah). Then I cut my spending in half.

This requires a great deal of sacrifice. I don’t go out with my friends nearly as often or indulge in habits like daily lattes anymore. I don’t buy new clothes or gadgets. I have a $14 dollar phone, an unbreakable purse, and the same laptop I got as a graduation present from high-school. The reality is I just can’t afford a lavish lifestyle and I know that I’ll gain more pleasure spending my money while in Australia than purchasing a mocha that I’m ‘used’ to having now. It’s Zimbardo’s delayed gratification experiment applied to you. Would you rather have an immediate reward or recognize that by delaying it, you can increase your satisfaction down the road?

This is not to say I do not enjoy my life or that I’m a recluse when I’m in Vegas. I just get creative about it. I scope out Groupon deals for things that I really want to do (like get two-for-one deals at Blue Martini, or take belly dancing classes). I also compromise with my friends. If they want to go out for a meal, I offer to cook one at home instead, or propose a less expensive outing (like going to a hotel pool or hanging out downtown). I look to local magazines like The Las Vegas Weekly and Seven to direct me to free events and concerts. I found a yoga studio that is donation only. I exchange clothes with friends and go to flea markets to pick up cool new pieces.

Make no mistake, I live a very full life when I’m home. And sometimes, I let the money be a non-issue and go out and indulge. I just am very cognizant not to do it every weekend. Remember, the first step is being real with yourself about your spending, and what you are willing to budget for your future adventures.

The Upside: You are able to save money quickly and spend it on travel and travel-related expenses.

The Downside: You do have to re-evaluate your current lifestyle and make a budget work for you.

But… I love my daily lattes…

Trust me, I do too. But by conserving my spending and focusing on living on a budget, I am able to travel farther faster. And remember, this is my lifestyle, not necessarily yours. If you’re just looking to go away for a weekend or spring break you won’t need to make near the planning as you would if you want to adopt a nomad lifestyle. Plus, some people are lucky enough to have family members or friends pay for their travel, in which case, I say enjoy it to the fullest! I do not have this luxury and that’s okay with me. It forces me to have to get creative with what I do have and really appreciate it. Plus, it provides me with an opportunity to get to learn more about each culture (since I can’t afford posh hotels, I do a lot of couch surfing).

Remember, for me this isn’t vacation. This is my life. Sometimes that means using composting toilets, getting stuck on a train, and sleeping outside. It’s an adventure.

If it’s too overwhelming for you to think about giving up part of your daily expenses to save for an adventure, then maybe this isn’t your thing. But I say give it a try. You’ll learn really quickly what matters to you.

But what if I want to adopt the nomad lifestyle permanently? How can I get paid to travel?

If you can find a way to do your current job remotely, then this problem is immediately solved. I recommend reading The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss for a detailed breakdown on how to get your boss to agree to remote work. He also provides great insight in how to achieve your ideal lifestyle and sustain it. Just read it. It’ll make you a better person.

But if nothing else, you have to put the intention out to the universe that getting paid to travel is what you want. Then you have to determine some specifics. What type of work do you want to do? Do you want to find a way to sustain your travel or are you looking for a career? Do you care if you are in control of your hours or location? Does having a job right now trump your desire to travel? All of these questions will factor into how long it may take you to get a job, and what kind of job this will be.

Sustaining- If you’re looking to sustain and afford to travel where you want, you can get creative (and you can do this fast). Normally sustaining requires a good deal of internal motivation and no fears of getting your hands dirty. You may have to walk dogs for a few weeks, tutor school children, or wash a hundred cars, but you’ll be able to afford to go where you want quickly.

The Upside: You are in control of where and when you work. You can work anywhere and get by. You gain a wide skills set and become adept at selling your strengths. You also meet a lot of different types of people.

The Downside: You may not have dependable income and have to go back to that budget to get by.

Finding a Career- If you’re okay with not having control on where you’re going or how long you’re there, you can find decent work in some cool locales. Like ships? You may find working on a cruise line’s the right fit for you. Love learning? Maybe teaching abroad is an option. Do you like children? Work as a seasonal nanny. Start exploring how you can use your skills to gain a career and ask yourself where and what you’re willing to live with.

The Upside: You are in the comfortable 9-5 worker’s mold while living in an exotic location. Because most of the careers available require some long-term commitment, you can really immerse yourself in the culture at hand. You have time to get to know a place and can become very adept at the skills you are honing.

The Downside: You commit to a time-frame and normally do not get to set the travel schedule. If you don’t like it, it can be difficult to get out of your commitment. This can also restrict the amount of time you have to explore neighboring countries or to do the things you want to do. And if you are looking for a career in your current wheelhouse, this also may take some time to acquire (another reason to get used to that budget).

But what about when you travel? Are you constantly on a budget then too?

The short answer? Yes. Again, this is how I live my life, not how I spend holidays. I have to always be aware of how much I’m spending to make sure I have enough to sustain me through my next job. I mean, not that I’m not willing to experience being broke in India, but I like having a safety net. So I try to watch myself.

But with that being said, I think that travel (and life really) is all about enjoying yourself to the fullest. If that means spending a-hundred-and-a-lot of dollars on an expensive meal in Paris then so be it. But remember, if you can’t afford to drop that kind of cash every weekend, you don’t do it. I also am very aware of my financial standing at all times when I travel. I am constantly asking myself, “Do I have the money to do this? Is this something I will look back on and be happy that I purchased? How much will this matter in a few weeks?”

The Upside: You always have enough money to get yourself out of a situation.

The Downside: You are constantly weighing your options.

So how do you determine what expenses are ‘worth it’?

There are no food purchases I have ever regretted. The ten-dollar hot chocolate in France was totally worth it, as was the latte in Nicaragua. The regret comes with purchasing the touristy stuff. I always try to pick up things for my friends and family, but I’ve gotten very strict on what I’ll buy for myself. I’d rather save the money for an experience (like zip-lining or snorkeling) than buy a t-shirt.

But remember, I am a poor traveler, so this is essential for me to sustain my lifestyle. Plus, constantly being on the move doesn’t allow for much space to accumulate tchotchkes. If I bring it home, it ends up sitting on shelves collecting dust (that I never clean because I’m never home). If I keep it with me, my suitcase gets heavy fairly quickly. So I tend to opt for purchasing experiences for myself. Memories are forever.

This isn’t to say that I don’t bring home souvenirs; I’m just very selective. I will always treasure the whimsical seashells I found on the beaches of Nicaragua and the vase I was given in Austria. But I don’t make collecting them a priority. Again, it’s a choice. My life is about adventure, not the material.

The Upside: I end up doing a lot of things when I travel versus collecting a lot of things. I am able to pack light and only bring back souvenirs I’d feel silly for leaving.

The Downside: I don’t really see one, but again, this is my personal choice. Maybe frugal travel is not for you. Maybe you like trinkets. That’s okay, too. I just may not be the person to guide you on your journey. =)

The Takeaway: Regardless of where you want to go, deciding to partake in a nomadic lifestyle is a commitment. It’s a commitment to constantly have to find work, constantly be without a home, constantly budget your money, and constantly make decisions about when to indulge. I just think it takes practice to determine how you like to travel. Again, I am a broke post-grad, so my priorities may be very different from yours. But this works for me.

I hope this has provided some foundational understanding about how I do what I do. Are you ready to give it a try? Be free, my nomadic friends! And travel safe!

*Didn’t have your question answered here? Want to know more about the financial aspects of full-time travel? No worries; this is only the first of many posts about how to make it happen. Bring it on!

724 Comments

  • Reply

    lynnschriner

    April 1, 2012

    Love this! Love your practical side with the tempting and beautiful photos of the pay off! Love the pics of you jumping and the bear shot, and and and…..Inspiring me to think about where the money goes…Your great, so glad we have each others number (so to speak)! XO

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 1, 2012

      Thank you so much, Lynn! I really am so blessed to have inspiring people such as yourself in my life!

      And let me know if you ever want my number. I would love to talk to you more about life, travel, everything! =)

      • Reply

        lynnschriner

        April 1, 2012

        I would love to talk to you whenever you wish! Thank you sweetie.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 1, 2012

          Sounds great! I’ll message you tomorrow with details =).

          • lynnschriner

            April 13, 2012

            CONGRATULATIONS On the UPSURGE of followers here!! YEA! When do you leave again?

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            Thank you thank you thank you! It’s been INSANE!

            Tuesday =).

    • Reply

      tammyteag

      April 12, 2012

      I love your lifestyle. You are a human butterfly!
      Love,
      Tammy.

      • Reply

        Hilary Billings

        April 15, 2012

        Thank you so much, Tammy! I definitely feel like I’m in a metamorphosis. =)

        What kinds of adventures do you have?

        • Reply

          Tammy

          April 23, 2012

          Hillary,
          tons but the current love affair is with starting a small business with nothing but a dream talent and the loving support of friends family and the universe. I am having a blast.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 23, 2012

            Love of family and friends (and a bit of talent) will go a long way! I wish you the best in your ventures and can’t wait to see where life takes you next! Please keep me posted.

    • Reply

      Azure James

      April 12, 2012

      You mentioned cattle driving- how difficult is it? I’ve been riding for two years, (english) and I still don’t personally feel like I could work cattle, even if I could remember the fancy knotwork lol. Cool blog! :)

      • Reply

        Hilary Billings

        April 15, 2012

        Actually that was my first time doing it, but I was under strict supervision of an amazing trainer. I’ve ridden hunter/jumper for over ten years never thought I would have an interest in cattle herding, but it was awesome! I didn’t do any hog-tying. It was all just pen work. But I loved it! Hope you get to try it some time!

  • Reply

    thelastsongiheard

    April 1, 2012

    Alas, I haven’t got time to read the entire post tonight but what I’ve read is fascinating. To be blunt, I’m not good at budgeting – this is one of my goals I’ve set for myself. Once I can budget effectively, you can bet I’ll start aiming high for those trips I can only currently dream of :)

    Thanks for taking the time to write this. I know it will benefit a LOT of people :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 1, 2012

      Thank you so much! I know, it’s kind of long (sorry about that :).

      And budgeting is often times the hardest thing for people. But I have confidence you will find a way to make it work!

      Where are you interested traveling?

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! Looking forward to learning more about you!

      • Reply

        thelastsongiheard

        April 1, 2012

        No problem – you’ve clearly put a lot of time, energy and thought into this post and I know many others will appreciate it, so THANK YOU!

        Where would I like to travel? Everywhere!! I’ve been to a few places in my time but not enough :)

        http://thelastsongiheard.wordpress.com/category/travel/

        I LOVED Hawaii. If I could just make it back there, I’d be happy :) I’d also love to see Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland (Austria was gorgeous), China, Russia…

        … I have a few places in mind LOL Hopefully, when he’s older, my son James can travel with me :)

        BTW, thanks for the Follow. I really appreciate it.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 1, 2012

          =) You’re very welcome (for the follow and the blog)! I love supporting fellow travelers and writers!

          And oooh Hawaii. That’s one of those places I can’t wait to get to. Which island(s) did you go to?

          And I think that’s great to think of future travel plans with your son! I’m sure he would love that.

  • Reply

    gene3067

    April 1, 2012

    That’s great information you gave out. Being able to do the things that you want will always be one of the best rewards you can give yourself.

  • Reply

    davidegrayson

    April 1, 2012

    Hilary, I just discovered your blog and am impressed. Very cool. You’re like a faster version of my cousin Elizabeth, who studied harp in France, did harp competitions in Israel and all over Europe, and now teaches in Thailand.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 1, 2012

      Hi David!

      Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and comment! I am so happy to hear you like the blog!

      Your cousin sounds like quite an impressive woman! Where in the world is she now? Where do you want to travel?

      Looking forward to dancing together soon!

      • Reply

        David Grayson

        April 5, 2012

        Thanks! She’s in Paris for a while and then going back to Thailand, teaching harp at Mahidol University. I’ve seen some pictures and it looks beautiful. My Dad’s also a great traveller… he ran a Marathon in Tokyo, then flew to Thailand to see my cousin and gave a math talk while he was there.

        I would like to travel to Germany some day so I can actually use the language I studied in high school. That would be fun, and I don’t see myself going alone so I’d have to convince someone to come with.

        Yep, maybe we’ll dance together soon!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 6, 2012

          Wow! What a culturally diverse and interesting family! You must always have things to talk about. How cool!

          And I think you would love Germany! Maybe one day =)

          And let’s do it! I’ll be around next week so I’m looking forward to it!

  • Reply

    This is a great way to live – you’re conscious of your environment, of your financial standing, and living life to the fullest. Who says you can’t have fun for free? Some of my best memories were made without spending $1.

    It takes alot of courage to do what you do….so kudos to you!

    – Jo

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 1, 2012

      =) Thank you so much, Jo! I really appreciate your support and encouragement. Some days I don’t know what I’m doing, but it’s always an adventure =).

  • Reply

    Anita Mac

    April 2, 2012

    So true – like so many things – it is all about the balance! I gave up long ago on buying souvenirs – they are a waste of money, heavy to carry and as my grandmother used to say, dust collectors….this is of course just the opinion of another person interested in as much travel as possible! Souvenirs for me now include things I need – new items of clothing while travelling (sweater if transitioning to a cold country) or socks (I am a cyclist – I go through quite a few socks and love to get them from the countries I visit!)
    Love your attitude – looking forward to many more accounts and tips of your travels.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 2, 2012

      Thank you so much, Anita! I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed the post. =)

      Ooooh socks from each country, how interesting! And I totally agree; it’s kind of an adventure in itself to pick up the things you need in different countries. I remember having to get sunscreen in Austria. That was fun!

      Thanks for continuing to read! I love following your adventures as well. Where are you off to next?

  • Reply

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  • Reply

    If you ever find yourself in Dominican Republic, you’ll always have a plate of food in my table.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 2, 2012

      Awww, thank you so much Arturo! What a kind thing to say. I hope to some day get there, and when I do you will be the first to know :).

      Have you ever been out to Las Vegas, NV?

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment!

      • Reply

        Thank you for sharing your adventure. I haven’t had the privilege! I have not dared yet.:)

        Like to vacation in NYC though and plan to take the kids to Disney this Christmas.

        One of these days! :)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 2, 2012

          You’re very welcome!

          And I know, the west coast can be kind of intimidating! NYC has everything, so you’ll definitely have a great time! And whoohoo Disneyland!

          Please stay in touch! I look forward to learning more about you and your life!

  • Reply

    futuredoll

    April 2, 2012

    I love it! You really are living life! I have used the rule of half many times & it is hard but does work.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 2, 2012

      Thank you so much! I do what I can to live my life to the fullest, much like everyone else =).

      And yeah, that half rule can be hard. I’ve found it’s actually harder for me to cut my spending when I have a full-time job than when I don’t. It’s like I’m less of a stickler because I have that paycheck coming in so I don’t think too much about it, but it’s amazing how the expenses add up at the end of the day!

      What is one of the best pieces of financial advice you’ve ever received?

      Thanks again for your continued support and encouragement!

  • Reply

    Barry Peddycord

    April 2, 2012

    Since I moved out and started living in the grown-up world, I’ve been very careful budgeting from the very beginning. Nice to know I’m not the only person using their high-school graduation laptop beyond the end of their college years. ;)

    I’m a generally frugal guy, but for me, the most valuable thing for me to spend money on *is* going out with other folks. I’m not pressured to get things for myself so much as I am to pay for the experience of getting to spend quality time with friends, especially when it leads to extending my social circle!

    But it’s not like you need any of that with the interesting people I’m sure you meet. :D

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 2, 2012

      Haha, right? I feel like there’s a stigma that laptops go out of fashion. I seriously have people come up to me in coffee shops all the time asking what year my Mac is because “it looks ancient!” I’ve pondered carrying around the Mac I have from 1988. That’ll give them something to stare at!

      And I agree about socializing being a great way to spend money. Food and friends are the way to go. It’s all about creating the memories.

      And what are you talking about, you silly man? Of course I need money to socialize! I mean, granted, I tend to strike up friendships in odd locales, but I still have to find a way to sustain them! =)

  • Reply

    Stormy

    April 2, 2012

    Hilary, did you say suitcase? how sheek :) I totally figured you for a backpack type of girl. Years ago in Hawaii I ran out of money, I had $19.99 on April Foods day. I ended up selling coconuts that I painted Hawaii on for 5 bucks a piece and made 500 in an hour from tourists flooding off a cruise ship.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 2, 2012

      Haha, it depends on how long I’m going for. My trip to Fiji that I’m taking here in a few weeks I’ll be using a backpack. For Europe, I had a suitcase. I’m very versatile. ;)

      And that sounds like a bang-up story! Wow… can’t wait to have one of those myself. Wait…

  • Reply

    Erica

    April 2, 2012

    I get asked this all the time, too! My response is usually that I eat only rice and salt when at home in Tokyo (definitely not true). It really is all about giving up certain things to travel; it’s not like I’m perfect at budgeting either. I’m currently kicking myself for being too extravagant while in England- live and learn, right?

    Being part Japanese and currently living in Japan, bringing back souvenirs to friends/family/coworkers is a part of the culture in which I live. Over the years, I’ve transitioned most of these to postcards which means that I spend a lot more money mailing things than the average person, but less overall. The exception, of course, is if you find that piece that pops out at you and makes you think of a certain person. Then you HAVE to get it! :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 3, 2012

      Hi Erica,

      Haha, I understand. England was kind of an expensive trip for me too. Some countries are just built to milk the money out of you, don’t you think? ;)

      And I totally get what you mean about finding that right thing. Sometimes you just find that item that reminds you of someone or that speaks to you. It’s almost like magic, eh? =)

      Where are you off to next? Any cool adventures planned for the future?

      • Reply

        Erica

        April 6, 2012

        They totally are! and it’s not even like the food that is making your wallet cry is that amazing either.. le sigh.

        Yes, and I think that it’s worth waiting for those perfect finds instead of focusing on dates (and have convinced my friends to think likewise, heh).

        Just got back from Okinawa and went and saw Mt. Fuji, but nowhere else planned until later this summer. I should probably make the most out of living in Tokyo since I only have 5 more months left here! What about yourself? Are you still in the PNW? Have you made it out to Seattle yet?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 6, 2012

          Actually just got back to Vegas. I did make it out to Seattle. Posts to come. Quite possibly my favorite city in the US. I didn’t really want to leave the northwest, but I needed sometime to regroup before I head Down Under.

          Oooh, Mt. Fuji! Sounds exciting! I say do whatever you feel like… 5 months is still a long time!

          • Erica

            April 6, 2012

            Yay! I’m excited to read your posts of my little hometown :) A little sad I didn’t get to drag you to all of my favorite haunts, though!

            Did you just say you’re going to OZ?! Don’t even get me started on how jealous I am. If I had the time/funds, I would go to OZ and NZ for 6 months to 1 year and love every minute of it. Regrouping is definitely necessary between trips, though. I’m paying for not having done so right now. *hack hack hack* Have a great trip!!!

            5 months isn’t so long when it will be pouring down rain for the entirety of at least one of those. oh rainy season, the bane of my existence for one month every year… I need to just suck it up and buy rain boots!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 7, 2012

            I’m excited to post about them! And no worries. I will visiting Seattle again one day. Maybe we can coordinate and visit all of your favorite places together. =)

            And yes, I am going to Australia (and then on to Fiji). I am very excited about it. Thank you so much for your well wishes =).

            And I totally forgot about those silly rainy seasons (we don’t have such a problem in Vegas ;). I’m sure you will find a way to see all that you want to see. I look forward to the posts about how you got soaked =).

          • Erica

            April 8, 2012

            For sure. Be warned- there will be a lot of eating and beer/coffee drinking involved.
            If you happen across an article that someone drowned while attempting to swim across the Pacific Ocean wearing a backpack, that’s because jealous really did get the best of me.
            aaaaand by posts you mean photos!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 11, 2012

            Oh I am so DOWN! And I’ll be sure to keep an eye out :)

            And yes, lots of photos to come!

  • Reply

    Brilliant Hillary! Your an inspiration, you know!!!

  • Reply

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  • Reply

    Four Blue Hills

    April 4, 2012

    Great, great article! Much of it just plain common sense! Don’t have to be “young” to do it either, been thinking about it a lot myself lately. Own my house, can rent it out and go as far as I can, in the U.S. for the moment, on that rent money. Stay somewhere for a while and work a bit to go somewhere else. Have been playing with the idea of getting a small RV, the little Toyota Chinook (could be picking wrong name) for me to live in while I go. Have to paint “Wannabe Gypsy” on the side too!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 4, 2012

      Ahhh! That sounds amazing! I absolutely encourage you to do that (down to the Wannabe Gypsy on the side)!

      You’ll have to let me know when you make it out to the West coast. Maybe I’ll catch a ride with you for a little bit ;)

  • Reply

    El Guapo

    April 4, 2012

    Excellent excellent post!
    Can’t wait to see your next set of tips and how-tos.
    While the life you’re describing isn’t one I’ll be taking up, I love your enthusiasm, and love sharing your stories.
    Keep on truckin!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 4, 2012

      =) Thank you thank you thank you!

      Oh, and thanks some more. Really, your support and enthusiasm keeps me enthusiastic, so I can keep on truckin’. =)

  • Reply

    Zara

    April 4, 2012

    Agreed! Life is too short to spend it collecting things. Cheers for the experience!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 4, 2012

      Cheers to that!

      What is one of your most memorable experiences?

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by!

  • Reply

    Miss Busa

    April 5, 2012

    Awesome!!! And here I thought I was crazy for being broke all the time just because I’m chasing after my dream and doing what I love to do. I still have to learn the budgeting thing, but I’m getting really good at saying no to stuff that seems so important in the now, but turns out three days later it’s all but forgotten. More money to spend on the fun stuff I really want to do. Even if people think I’m nuts. Great article. A fun read and very informative.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 5, 2012

      I’m so glad to hear you liked the blog! I am also SUPER excited to hear that you’re pursuing your dream! That’s super awesome!

      I definitely have those days (and questionable looks from those around me) and I wonder if it’s worth it. But all in all, I find that yes, it is =).

      What kinds of amazing adventures are in your future?

      Looking forward to following your story!

  • Reply

    Alison Gunn, Ph.D.

    April 5, 2012

    I think you’ve captured the essence of what budgeting is supposed to be all about, which is determining your priorities… It’s best to do what makes you happy and have no regrets!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 6, 2012

      Thank you for your kind words! I want very much to help others find ways to travel. I hope I’m doing what I can to elucidate the lifestyle. =)

      What kinds of things make you happy?

  • Reply

    Rodney's Saga

    April 6, 2012

    Horses at home keep me from traveling farther than Walmart, but one of my favorite writers is Tim Cahill. He often talks about financing travel: http://www.rolfpotts.com/writers/cahill.php, as well as parts of his book *Road Fever*. Not that you need any advice, but you might like reading about someone with a similar lifestyle.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 6, 2012

      Haha, I completely understand! I used to be a catch-rider… you never go father than the horses can travel!

      And thank you so much for the suggestion! I will be sure to check it out. I’m always looking for inspiration. =)

    • Reply

      ernestwhile

      April 11, 2012

      Agreed on the mad props to Tim Cahill. Fantastic.

  • Reply

    Claire Lopez

    April 6, 2012

    I nominated you for a Sunshine Award. Check it out at http://www.claireclopez.com! You rock!

  • Reply

    Rebecca Koo

    April 9, 2012

    I LOVE THIS!!! My life is totally different than yours (stay at home mom of three), but this is some seriously great stuff. Living according to your values and priorities and knowing that means choices along the way. I think this is part of what I love so much about reading your blog. We are so different, but each living the lives we choose to live and would have it no other way! Way to go, my nomadic, free-spirited friend!!! :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh Rebecca, you always know what to say to make me feel so warm and fuzzy inside! And I completely agree; while we live completely different lifestyles, we are kindred spirits =).

      And I absolutely agree that it’s all about values… if the values are there, anything can happen!

      Please take care, because you’re wonderful, and I look forward to years of comment exchanges (and maybe one day meeting in person!)

  • Reply

    AnonymousBurn

    April 10, 2012

    What a great post, Hilary! I’m so glad you’ve found what works for you. So great :)

  • Reply

    Namita Lad

    April 10, 2012

    congrats on being Freshly Pressed :)

  • Reply

    Sarah Harris

    April 10, 2012

    Hah! Great budgeting advice for nomadda where you hang your hats at night!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much, miss Sarah! I am glad to hear you agree!

      What has been your favorite place to travel thus far?

      • Reply

        Sarah Harris

        April 12, 2012

        Well I have to admit, I wasn’t nomadic when I did. My favorite place to travel thus far is Greek Islands or Provence, France. You? Best? Worst?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Ooh, the Greek islands must have been beautiful! I can’t wait to get there!

          I know this is going to sound super cheesy, but I haven’t had a place I haven’t loved yet. For me it’s all about having new experiences, and I’ve certainly received plenty of those! But if pressed, I probably wouldn’t go back to Albany. ;)

          • Sarah Harris

            April 13, 2012

            SO BEAUTIFUL! There you can eat and sleep for so cheap in the most beautiful places in the world for so cheap (at least it was cheap before they were going bankrupt). I haven’t been to Albany. LOL!
            You have a great sense of adventure!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Well I definitely have to check it out, now that it’s received such a resounding endorsement, haha!

            And thank you! It seems like you do too! I hope you’ll stay in touch and let me know how your adventures go from here!

  • Reply

    Winn

    April 10, 2012

    I love your thorough and honest tips here! This is brilliant. We teach our 3 kids the same thing when we travel: we don’t buy souvenir things to collect dust, we spend our money on experiences. Two things we always try to get just because they are light, inexpensive and remind us of our time are 1) postcards and 2) those pressed pennies with the location’s notable monument of whatever. If you are interested in Viet Nam and can save up for the plane ticket, I would be happy to host you here! (i’m also a mom of 3.) http://wentdiddone.wordpress.com – I’m legit, I promise. :) There are good jobs for teaching here, too.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there!

      First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to comment! And I am so happy to hear that you are raising your kids to have non-material values. I think that’s wonderful!

      And I have been dying to go to Vietnam! I would absolutely LOVE to take you up on that sometime.

      Please keep in touch! And please let me know if you ever make it up to Vegas. =)

  • Reply

    youngjeninspats

    April 11, 2012

    Thank you for this! I’ve been trying to explain just this to friends for years, now all I have to do is send them a link to your page :-)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Whoohoo! I’m happy to hear I could help =).

      What had been your favorite adventure thus far?

      • Reply

        youngjeninspats

        April 11, 2012

        Wow, it’s hard to choose! Right now I’m travelling on foot across Germany, Luxembourg, France and Spain on the medieval pilgrim roads which is really awesome. Last summer I did Cologne to Metz, this summer I’m hoping to do all of France, then next summer Spain. You can read about it here if you’re interested: http://www.thetestofwisdom.wordpress.com

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          That sounds wonderful! I can’t wait to follow your travels!

          Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    Milla Kazimir

    April 11, 2012

    This post is really inspiring for me. I am on tight budget, too, and try to spare enough for the next travel. Budgeting means by me cutting off home energy and food expenses, tailoring shirts and skirts by myself, absolutely not spending in restaurants, not having a car, and growing vegetables. Also, when I’m travelling I don’t care so much about food (that means always being slim and fit ;) ), and taking photos as gift for whoever interested (parents and relatives not excluded).
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts!
    Have a good time travelling!!! :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Milla!

      I’m so happy to hear you found this post inspiring! It sounds like you certainly have your system down pat!

      Whereabouts are you traveling now? Maybe one day we’ll meet one the road =).

      Safe travels! Looking forward to staying in touch!

      • Reply

        Milla Kazimir

        April 12, 2012

        Next stop will be Lithuania in July (for my birthday). I’ll surely post photos and thoughts about. :) Stay tuned – each other!! Cheers!

  • Reply

    edgeledge

    April 11, 2012

    Hilary you are a wonder and hope you have continued wonderful journeys.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You are too kind! Really, your words are deeply comforting and encouraging! This road can be tough, but I always feel blessed to do the things I do!

      What kinds of adventures do you enjoy having?

      Please keep in touch!

      • Reply

        edgeledge

        April 11, 2012

        Hillary, I have moved 45 times in my 46+ years ;) so have been relatively nomadic. But a little less daring than your way, wish I could be so free to do that, it would be so enriching and not too routine…

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Wow! That says nomad to me!

          In what ways do you think your travels have been less daring? I’m sure you must have had tons of adventures with all those moves!

          • edgeledge

            April 12, 2012

            The moves have been to a pre-determined job, never just up and left and hoped to turn my hand to something, which is what I find daring, but exciting in your method. Yes some interesting places and adventures have been had. My blog has some, with more to come ;) No that’s not a mindless spam link back…

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            I’ll be sure to check them out! Sounds interesting. =)

            Stay in touch!

  • Reply

    Zenwalker

    April 11, 2012

    What ever you say is right. But some times you gotta take care of the folks and hence you can not adapt the nomaidc life. But i still envy you about the wildness attitude you have. Adventurous is what i am always wanna be. Just get out and enjoy the nature before you realize that your too old to be just in bed :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      I completely understand! There certainly are responsibilities that take priority to the life I lead, and I have shared your burden before. Just know that nothing is permanent, and try to find the beauty in the everyday, which it sounds like you’re doing!

      Take care! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply

    novusophia

    April 11, 2012

    Excellent ! I love the bear shot, he looks, well, as if he appreciates you ( int the nice-dinner-in-front-of-me kind of way XD ). Personally my only question would be how you handle all those ( utterly Alien ) taxes that maybe apply on your house, since, in your post, you mention having a permanent one somewhere you go back to sometimes. Other than that, I am happy to see that people have already adopted nomadic lifestyles before me, as it’ll make it a bit easier for me to start when i get my studies finished ( I can’t stand the thought of living in one place for more than 20 years, I’ve been living in France with my family for ~10 years and I’ve made some friends, of course, but I find it weird people can just settle so easily. My most enjoyable times have always been when I’m travelling, with or without my parents. :) ).

    My best wishes, Peter

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Peter!

      Haha, thanks so much! Bam Bam was a sweetheart. He was growling on cue. The handler I was working with told me that if I ever encountered a bear making that face in the wild I would be dead meat!

      I have family in Vegas that I stay with whenever I go back home. I own a car as well, but I leave that in care of my relatives and it’s mostly paid off at this point. My advice for anyone that has a permanent residence who wants to travel is to get a renter. Or, get a roommate and that way you always have a bed if need be. I can post more about this if you like.

      What are you studying now? I’m all for education and I think that’s great that you’re working towards that! Keep it up! The world will be here when you’re done =).

      Is there somewhere you want to travel to once you finish? What part of France are you in?

      All the best!

      • Reply

        novusophia

        April 12, 2012

        Well, I’m still in lycee, which, if i got it right, is called 12th grade in America. For now I’m studying Science in general, but, notably in france, kids are mostly leaning on a direct passage into a good college or university, but–probably because of my background ( I’m danish and moved to france only 9-10 years ago, so I’m not too rooted in their ways yet) or my personality (I’m the free-thinking kind of person)– I’m planning on following my father on a 3-4 months trip to Australia after the exam, this getting myself a sabatic year and some time to think of what I want to do next ( I’m very interested in Writing, Biology, Programming and Philosophy..so there’s a lot of possibilities !).

        I live in South France, a region called lanquedoc-Rousillon.

        When I do get to traveling, I’m very interested in getting to see different parts of th world, I don’t have any specific destination in mind, I’d just like to see some of the other continents ( Asia, Australia, America ) If i should chose a specific destination…I’ve always wanted to see the nazca lines ! So Peru would be in the top list of places to visit :) .

        Thanks for your quick reply.

        My Best Wishes, Peter.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow! Sounds like you already live quite the adventure!

          I’m sure whatever you decide to do will be the best choice for you. Please let me know if I can help you figure anything out. I’m an advocate of lifetime learning, even if that’s not in a traditional setting.

          Best wishes! =)

  • Reply

    Finally, someone else who understands! I cannot tell you how often I have this exact conversation with people who are jealous and confused over how I manage to travel so much with no travel patron funding my trips. I was raised with all our $$ going straight into the travel pot, and I hope to pass on the same ethos to my children someday.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi miss Valerie!

      I am so happy to hear you have a similar mindset! I don’t know why people automatically assume you either have everything paid for or are selling yourself, but it’s nice to put those stereotypes to rest =).

      Where in the world are you now? Maybe one day we’ll cross paths!

      • Reply

        I’m in the marvelous old city of Utrecht, Amsterdam’s slightly smaller but infinitely cooler counterpart. Come by anytime!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          I’m all about the smaller and infinitely cooler places =). And I will try to do that! I’m on my way down under here shortly, but maybe after that?

          Keep in touch!

  • Reply

    thestool

    April 11, 2012

    You have an awesome attitude, for one so young too! I am impressed that you are following what you love and and have worked out how to get there on your own steam.
    If you are ever in Auckland, New Zealand, be sure to get in contact with us and we’ll take you biking around our beautiful city. Check out my website. No charge for you. Thanks again. Den and Jono.
    http://cycleauckland.wordpress.com/

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Den and Jono!

      Wow, thank you so so much! I feel so grateful to be meeting such generous people as yourself! And I would LOVE to take you up on that offer!

      Please stay in touch!!!

  • Reply

    fiveitchyfeet

    April 11, 2012

    Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!

  • Reply

    kamielverwer

    April 11, 2012

    Nice post, enjoyed it. My wife and me have adopted this lifestyle for some time now, and really, living “on the road” is much cheaper than renting *anything* in the rich Northern countries. Keywords: couchsurfing, house sitting, camping, hitch hiking, ride sharing, craigslist, volunteering for accommodation (see http://www.kindmankind.net), dumpster diving (if you’re into that) – life doesn’t cost money, really. Airfare does (but there’s a good chance to hitch a yacht too, see CouchSailing, or Crewfinder).

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! And I completely agree! There are so many avenues to make it work without having to break the bank!

      Thank you so much for the tips! I will be sure to keep this in mind!

      I hope to one day be able to meet the two of you somewhere down the road. Looking forward to following your adventure!

  • Reply

    Jane

    April 11, 2012

    Very useful advice. I’ve found that budgeting is key, as is having a nice safety net. You never know when you need to get on that plane/train home *today*. (Or yesterday, in my case, but hey!)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey Jane!

      Thank you so much for your kind words! And I’m glad to hear that you agree!

      What’s going on in your neck of the woods? Did you have to take a trip home recently?

      • Reply

        Jane

        April 12, 2012

        Nah, I was visiting a friend in Hong Kong for Ching Ming Festival/Easter, and my preferred method of transportation (train) was all sold out, so I had to buy a plane ticket back home to Chengdu. It wasn’t too bad, but I was certainly glad I had the cash available, you know?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Yeah, I totally understand! And I love trains, too. There’s something so romantic about them =)

  • Reply

    ghummakkad

    April 11, 2012

    If you find yourself broke in India…don’t worry, you have a travel buff sitting right here…though not to the same magnitude. Lots of learn from this blog…and yes, come to India. It’s fascinating!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there!

      Wow, thank you so much! You are so kind! I would love to come to India and visit! Do you have a favorite city or thing to do?

      And know that the door is always open the other way, as well! I am happy to help if you ever get to Vegas!

      • Reply

        ghummakkad

        April 11, 2012

        Hi Hilary,
        Thank you for your note…my favorite city…umm…thats tough…but yes, I love South India and Rajasthan in India, most of Europe and New York (except for NYC…none are cities). I also had a chance to drive from Kazakhstan to Krygyzstan once…one of the most beautiful drives ever…want to do it again! My fav thing is to travel (but, of course!), apart from that movies and popcorn!
        Thanks for the invitation for Vegas…haven’t been there yet but I know that the day is not that far, when I will! Keep blogging!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Sounds like you’ve had some amazing adventures! Can’t wait to hear more about them one day. =)

          Keep traveling and blogging yourself! Looking forward to meeting up one day on the road!

  • Reply

    thanks for this post is so inspiring!! Not that I lead a nomadic life but everything I earn I use it for travel.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there! Thank you so much!

      And no worries! You don’t have to have a nomadic life to be adventurous! And it sounds like you definitely have the right attitude!

      Where in the world would you like to go next?

      • Reply

        I have next destination, La Reunion island, which I will visit friends, but it have to wait until October :(

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow, that sounds amazing! You’ll definitely have to let me know how it goes!

          And don’t forget to enjoy life in between then and now. =)

  • Reply

    Lindsay

    April 11, 2012

    Even after I explain all this, my Mom still asks me how everytime I move again ;-)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Haha, I completely understand, Lindsay!

      Where in the world are you now?

      • Reply

        Lindsay

        April 11, 2012

        I just came to Hawaii from Mexico :-)

        Where you thinking of next?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Sounds awesome! Did you have a good time?

          I leave for Australia in a week! Whoohoo!

          • Lindsay

            April 13, 2012

            Yes! Really loved the food and beer ;-)

            That’s awesome, Australia is so much fun, you’re gonna have a great time!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Good food and beer is definitely a plus =).

            I’m looking forward to it!

            Please stay in touch! Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    Alannah Foley

    April 11, 2012

    Reblogged this on Campervan Capers and commented:
    OK, this lassie might not be a motorhome nut, but having been a bit of a campervan-less nomad myself a while back now, I thought this might just appeal to a few fellow travellers out there…

  • Reply

    cdoug_e

    April 11, 2012

    I am a professional traveler too!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Great post, and even when I am “home” I find new corners of the city and since i don’t spend much time here its like exploring a new place as well. For me it is research to study the world especially culture and agriculture. So i teach classes on ecological design and organic farming and take farming gigs here and there. It allows me to get to the countryside and live, interact with those cultures like the gaucho’s in Argentina that i just spent 5 months with through an organic farming job. That allowed me to visit other parts of Argentina and most of all Chile. That was a spot that I always wanted to go to but never knew how to manifest it but eventually it did. Great post, safe travels.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Whooohoo world travelers!

      And wow, what a life! That sounds so amazing! Funny you should mention organic farming in Argentina… I’ve been talking about wanting to go to Argentina specifically to learn about that for months! I would appreciate any advice you could offer on the subject!

      Please keep in touch!

      • Reply

        cdoug_e

        April 11, 2012

        if you want a really hippy place, go to a place called Shamballa Permaculture in the super hippy town of San Marcos Sierras, near Cordoba, the second largest city. Besides that there is CIDEP down in El Bolson if you want to be immersed more in spanish. Also in El Bolson there are lots of organic farms around the town. I personally really, really liked Chile so don’t rule that one out eh.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Thank you so much for the advice! So much to think on!

          I am so grateful for your help! Maybe one day I’ll meet you along the road =)

          • cdoug_e

            April 12, 2012

            No worries Hilary, if you ever want to fast forward your knowledge of agriculture and sustainability, I highly suggest taking a Permaculture Design Course. Its what i do for a living so i am of course a bit biased but it changed my life and i have seen it do the same for many others. Would be nice to meet along the way one day, btw, i lived in the background of your avatar picture off and on for years. Lovely pic to recall fond memories!!!!!!!!!!!! Feel free to keep asking questions.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Thank you so much for the tips! I will start looking into that to see what’s available in my neck of the woods (and in my budget). You will definitely be hearing from me. =)

            Paris was one of my favorites. =) Where in the world are you now?

          • cdoug_e

            April 13, 2012

            I am in CIncinnati, Ohio right now, my hometown, just got back from 6.5 months in S. America. Most of the time in Argentina and a bit in Chile. Most likely my next trip outside of the states is going to be back to Europe, teach a course in Portugal and go to tow new countries- Italy and Austria. Should be good fun. I am looking forward to some trips i am taking in the states as well over the next few months. It such a big place and as much as i have traveled in the states there is still vast sections that i have yet seen. How bout you, where are you these days?

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Wow! Sounds amazing! If you need tips on Austria, let me know. Spent some time in Salzburg and adored it!!

            I’m in Vegas at the moment, but I leave in just a couple of days to head to Australia and then on to Fiji.

            Let me know if you make it out this way over the summer. I am happy to play tour guide! =)

  • Reply

    Anastasia

    April 11, 2012

    Wow.. so inspirational. I took a job here in Saudi specifically so that I could make a regular paycheck and travel. I’ve been here 4 years and I’ve taken one trip (Istanbul) that wasn’t an obligatory trip home. Four years. I feel guilty enough, but you make me really face the fact that I haven’t prioritized this thing (travel/experience) that my mind says is most important to me, but my actions have directly deprived me of.. Thank you! :) great blog..following.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Anastasia!

      First of all, let me commend you for taking a job in Saudi! That takes a lot of guts (I couldn’t make that kind of commitment just yet)!

      And I apologize for making you feel guilty! I imagine you must have gained some invaluable life and cultural experiences from living the life you have. And I wouldn’t look at it as wasting time. If you wish to spend the future differently, that’s one thing, but I am a firm believer that we do everything in our own due time. =)

      Please keep in touch! I look forward to hearing about your future adventures!

  • Reply

    Camila

    April 11, 2012

    Great post!
    I am kind of a nomadic traveler ever since I moved to Sweden two and a half years ago of which more than one and a half were spent travelling. People always ask me how I manage to do it and that’s why I really liked this post – you got a very good, comprehensive explanation, things that most people are not aware of.
    On the other hand, I think we can’t forget that this lifestyle is also a product of some circumstances in life. Most of these circumstances can come to existence by our own effort, but some are possible with a little help from the universe.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Camila!

      Thank you so much! I spent a lot of time on the post and am just thrilled to hear that so many people are able to use it!

      And I absolutely agree! It’s all about the right timing and motivation! You seem to have a great grasp on all of the necessary elements, too!

      Sweden sounds like such an amazing adventure. What has been your favorite experience thus far?

      Please keep in touch!

      • Reply

        Camila

        April 12, 2012

        So far Sweden and the swedes themselves have been the greatest adventure! They are weird in many senses, but so are we, right?
        I know you like traveling, but in case you like looking at pictures from past trips, I’ve been posting stuff on my latest trips to Malaysia, Thailand and India.
        It’s in Portuguese, but the pictures speak for themselves.
        Hugs!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Oooh! I will be sure to check them out. And I’m excited to learn some Portuguese =).

          All the best!

  • Reply

    thoughtofvg

    April 11, 2012

    wow, what a way to live life. The idea of staying in one place forever with a 9-5 job sounds like a cage to me, so your free lifestyle is inspirational. Thank you =)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Haha, every 9-5 job I’ve had has ended horribly for me (mostly with me in tears saying something like, “Don’t make meeee.”) I think I’ve learned that mold is just not for everyone. But it’s important to experience, I believe!

      What kinds of things do you do in your day-to-day?

      • Reply

        thoughtofvg

        April 12, 2012

        I’m still just a student, but the idea of finishing studies only to enter a corporate world where money is considered to be the most important thing really doesn’t appeal.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          I’m sure you’ll find a way to make it work. I just gave a talk today to some highschool students about balancing the interal versus external motivation, and how that is how I define success nowadays. It sounds like you’re already thinking about what you need to be happy, so that’s great!

  • Reply

    gumiii

    April 11, 2012

    I share the same lifestyle although I’ve taken a break for now. I sure will be back soon. Indeed it is about setting priorities and having a strong willpower. Whenever I am tempted going into a coffeeshop or see a pretty looking shoes on sale, I say to myself that could be beer money while watching the sunset on some exotic island beach. Or buying stuff in a colorful, chaotic market somewhere. It usually works.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      So true! And as you say, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes the shoes win. But that’s okay, because in reality, you do too =).

      What are you up to nowadays?

      • Reply

        gumiii

        April 14, 2012

        I am back in the corporate jungle for now. Sad but necessary. Will be back to real life soon!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 16, 2012

          Hey, I understand! Sometimes it’s a necessary evil. =)

          Well please stay in touch! I hope we get to meet down the road someday!

  • Reply

    Novelty

    April 11, 2012

    You can make things so simple!!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      I agree! It’s the simple pleasures in life I think!

      How have you been able to benefit from a simpler lifestyle?

  • Reply

    GIORGI

    April 11, 2012

    thes GreaT…!!!:D:D

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I am so glad to hear you liked it!

      What kinds of adventures do you have in your life?

  • Reply

    millefeuille1

    April 11, 2012

    This article is really helpful. Thanks. I have been looking into working abroad for a long time and now I have found an opportunity to live in Seville for 4 months. I would also like to be an au pair afterwards! Brill! With careful planning you can definitely have more freedom over your lifestyle.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh good, I am so happy to hear you find it helpful!

      Wow, Seville! That sounds like so much fun! Let me know if you’re interested in going to Italy. There’s a great au pair program I know of there.

      Please keep in touch! Can’t wait to hear more about your travels!

  • Reply

    Luke

    April 11, 2012

    So impressed. Keep up the good work!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thanks so much, Luke!

      What are you up to these days?

      Please keep in touch!

      • Reply

        Luke

        April 11, 2012

        Planning the begginings of a (hopefully) long term get away and trying to become moore fiscally aware. Loved the post. Congratulations on being freshly pressed!
        Cheers,
        Luke

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Sounds great! Let me know when you get those plans off the ground, or how I can help!

          And thank you, again!

  • Reply

    elizabethhutchinson

    April 11, 2012

    Thanks Hilary for the great tips and inspiration. There is nothing like travel!!! Just got back from teaching drawing and painting in Morocco- looking forward to more adventures, paint box in tow!!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You’re very welcome, Elizabeth!

      WOW- Morocco sounds like quite the adventure! How long were you there for? What kind of art do you like to do? Sounds like such an adventure!

      • Reply

        elizabethhutchinson

        April 12, 2012

        Hi Hilary,
        It was an adventure! I was there for 13 days and taught a travel sketch workshop with my great friend and fellow painter Margaret Owen. You can see examples of my work( I am an oil painter) right here on WP at: http://elizabethhutchinson.wordpress.com/
        We are going back to Morocco next spring to do it again and hopefully to SW France in Sept. with another group of brave souls, water colors and moleskin notebooks!
        Thanks so much and I can’t wait to read about where you’re off to next!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Whoa, that sounds like such a great gig! Too bad I don’t have any painting skills. Way to go finding a way to monopolize on your talents! I can’t wait to check out your stuff =).

          Please keep in touch and let me know how your future plans pan out! And I’m looking forward to sharing my adventures with you. =)

          • elizabethhutchinson

            April 23, 2012

            You don’t need any painting skills to come along, and if you ever find yourself nearby, I’d love to invite you to come along and paint a day with us, on the house!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 23, 2012

            How sweet of you! I would love to do that! Yes, please let me know when the next one is and hopefully I’ll be nearby! What a fun experience to blog about! =)

          • elizabethhutchinson

            April 23, 2012

            If you find yourself nearby, please come and paint with us for a day- on the house.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 23, 2012

            Thank you thank you! And I will be taking you up on that! Let me know where you guys end up!

          • elizabethhutchinson

            April 23, 2012

            Of course! April 7-13 2013 we’ll be in Marrakech staying and teaching at Peacock Pavilions. It would be wonderful if you could join us there for a morning of painting and for lunch too, if you have time…
            Our website for these retreats is : http://www.moroccansketchbook.com/
            We also hope to be in SW France in Sept. 2012 and 2013…
            See you soon, I hope!

  • Reply

    skip bin hire

    April 11, 2012

    Well done on being freshly pressed!:)

  • Reply

    kutcheenta

    April 11, 2012

    wow! i always dream a life like that, to be a traveler. But I think It’s hard for me to do that but I don’t want to lose hope. very nice blog. glad i found it.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey there!

      Glad you found my blog too!

      Why do you think that you won’t be able to do it? Always always always have hope! And let me know how I can help!

  • Reply

    pagingdrallie

    April 11, 2012

    I just found your blog today, and I LOVE it already! Will definitely be back to read more! This is exactly what I needed today. Thanks so much for sharing your adventures!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      I am so overjoyed to hear that this was what you needed! Really, thank you so much. I am just so excited to be able to share my adventures with others!

      What kind of adventures do you have in your life?

      • Reply

        pagingdrallie

        April 11, 2012

        Some days, it feels like I don’t have any adventures. Trying to adhere to a new perspective! Recently returned from a vacation with my husband–a road trip from our home in Indianapolis, out to Denver, Vegas, the Grand Canyon, and home–and that was quite the adventure! (Really wish I had known you were in Vegas before we left!) Not sure where our next one will lead us, but I’m considering a medical missions trip outside the US.

        Can’t wait to read more about your adventures! I have loved reading some of your posts, you have such a fresh perspective on life! So glad I stumbled upon your blog! Congrats on being “Freshly Pressed”!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Wow, that road trip does sound like quite the adventure! What did you think of Vegas? Next time let me know you’re coming through and I’ll meet up with you for coffee or something =).

          Medical missions sound super exciting! There are so many avenues to choose! I’m confident you will find the one that works for you. =)

          Remember that every is an adventure (even if it only includes talking to the cute barista or getting a discount on your groceries). I am a firm believer that life is what you make of it! So go make yourself some awesome life =).

          Thank you so much for your support! I look forward to sharing my adventures with you!

          • pagingdrallie

            April 18, 2012

            Before our road trip, the farthest West I’d ever been was Dallas. The whole experience was breathtaking and mind-blowing! The landscape alone is so much different than what I’m used to at home, in Indiana. We’re definitely planning on coming back sometime, and when we come back to Vegas I’ll be sure to let you know! I’d love to hear your stories in person (I’m a sucker for a good story!).

            Thank you for the encouragement. It has really brightened my day!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            Haha, it’s okay. I’m a sucker for a good story too =). Plus, I love meeting good people. Us adventure lovers have to stick together!

            And you’re very welcome! I’m always available if you need more encouragement (well… I mean, I will be in a jungle for a month, so if I don’t reply it’s not because of lack of wanting. ;)

            Take care! And let me know how I can help you along your journey!

  • Reply

    Lotto Results

    April 11, 2012

    Great blog! Congratulations on being freshly pressed. I always wanted to travel extensively but the problem is I don’t get more than 20 days of holidays a year from my work which I save to visit my family back in Asia. So basically I don’t have any holidays left to travel. I wish I could.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so so much! I am overjoyed with what today has brought!

      I don’t know what your current work situation is, but have you read Tim Ferriss’s Four Hour Work Week? He really helps to break down how to get remote work, so that you can take more time to travel. I absolutely recommend it!

      And travel doesn’t have to be long (as I’ve been finding out). Sometimes just taking a day trip out to hike can be an adventure!

      I hope that you are able to find a way to make it happen for you!

      • Reply

        Lotto Results

        April 12, 2012

        Thank you very much Hilary for being so supportive and taking the time out to reply to my comment . I will definitely check out Tim Ferriss’s “Four Hour Work Week” site hopefully that will help. It sounds interesting already.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          You’re very welcome! Happy reading! Let me know what you think of it! =)

          Take care~

  • Reply

    Hippiestegosaur

    April 11, 2012

    Very practical advice. This makes me want to start budgeting better again. :P

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you! I try to be as real as possible =).

      What kinds of things do you want to budget for? What are some of your dreams?

  • Reply

    Jennifer Avventura

    April 11, 2012

    Awesome post! I agree with you on many points … budgeting, priorities, and the things that I want in ‘my’ life as opposed to what others want for me. Congrats on Freshly Pressed, you’ve found a new follower!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi miss Jennifer!

      Thank you so much for your kind words! I am so happy to hear there are others that agree!

      Where are your adventures taking you now? I hope we get to meet somewhere down the road!

  • Reply

    MJ, Nonstepmom

    April 11, 2012

    Great advice for everyone; setting goals, delayed gratification…you’re inspiring !

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much, MJ! You are too kind!

      What pieces of advice have stuck with you over the years?

      Please keep writing!

  • Reply

    Liz Alexander

    April 11, 2012

    Even though I’m not currently in a situation to pursue this lifestyle, I love the advice you give here! :D It’s great for anyone looking to travel abroad on a budget!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thank you so much, miss Liz! I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed it!

      What are you up to these days? Please keep writing!

      • Reply

        Lady Tam Li Hua

        April 11, 2012

        Oh, I’m DEFINITELY writing! :D

        Right now, my beloved and I are working to pay off some bills (My student loans in particular, which are a P-A-I-N). I’m also looking forward to a missions trip to Mexico with my home church this summer, so I think that will help my wanderlust a great deal! Lol!!

        I look forward to more of your entries! Stay safe out there!! :D

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Thank you so much for taking the time to comment!

          Students loans are a bother, but I’m SO happy to hear that you’re going to do some mission work! I know that will be such an amazing experience for you. And how great to be able to go serve a higher cause. My hat is off to you =).

          Please stay in touch! And I will do what I can to stay safe.

          Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    Liz Alexander

    April 11, 2012

    Reblogged this on The Lady Expounds.

  • Reply

    starlight

    April 11, 2012

    love your post, your life in itself is an adventure.. i do admire you, wish you luck in your next travel..

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thank you so much! I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed it!

      And just remember that your life, too, is an adventure. =) Please let me know if you ever need reminding of that. =)

      All the best!

  • Reply

    M. Renee

    April 11, 2012

    This is wonderful. Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge with the world!

    (Bear with me, here comes a minor life story:) Since I was a kid, I’ve wanted to see everything I read about it books. And now, I’m three weeks away from graduating with a BFA in Creative Writing (a.k.a. Unemployment), and I have no potential job prospects. Because of this, I’ve decided that now’s as good a time as any to travel. I’ve never been outside of the United States, and I’m not very good at blogging, so I have several questions:

    1.) Have you worked elsewhere besides in the States? I’ve been looking at teaching opportunities abroad, but most are one-year contracts (and having never been outside of the U.S., much less worked outside, I’m hesitant about taking such jobs.) Are there places to look for them if you’re not in the country yet? (I will have little to no problems finding odd ways to make money in the States; I’m a hard worker, especially when I have a goal in mind.)

    2.) Have you had any problems with couch surfing, like sketchy hosts, potentially-violent neighborhoods, etc? I’m all for saving money and getting the true experience that accompanies getting out of the tourist spots, but I’m as green as they come. How did you do it?

    3.) Do you travel alone? This is a big one. Everyone I’ve spoken to about my potential trip have always had the question: “But, you’re a woman. A blonde woman. Is that safe?” I’ve tried to alleviate fears, but I’m slightly nervous myself, because I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. Any tips?

    Ending general queries: What problems did you encounter? Were there ones you didn’t forsee?

    Again, thank you so much for posting! It’s helping me and everyone else who’s thinking about taking up the nomadic lifestyle. Keep it up!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there!

      First of all, congrats on your accomplishments! It sounds like you’ve got quite the story ahead of you, and travel will give you nothing but inspiration to write about!

      I am happy to answer your questions, but my answer will need some time. I will be posting more blogs like this and will look to include these questions! I hope you’ll check back =)

      Thanks for commenting! Be well, and I look forward to hearing more about your adventures!

  • Reply

    Gold and silver

    April 11, 2012

    I like to travel and adventure , but i have to work full time. Your suggestion inspiring me to travel where i want and where i like . Very nice post and very cool cool pics, specially the last one.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I hope that you are able to find a way to travel (even if only short distances). Adventures are awaiting you!

  • Reply

    awisecrackin

    April 11, 2012

    This is awesome and just what I was sort of looking for! I am going to Singapore to study abroad and stay longer after so I can nomad around!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow! Singapore sounds amazing! I am so happy to hear that you found it so helpful!

      Please keep in touch and let me know how your adventures pan out! And let me know if you have any other questions that I can answer for you. =)

  • Reply

    Penny

    April 11, 2012

    Hey there, you don’t say where you live when you’re not traveling? Most of us pay rent of some kind… ?
    Good story and congrats!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Penny!

      I am based in Las Vegas. I have family here that I can stay with, but I try to plan my trips back home around my long-term housesitting and petsitting gigs, so that way I can get paid to be at home. =)

      I’ve been getting a lot of comments about rent, and am working on a blog to talk about how to handle such expenses. I hope you’ll check back to read it!

      Best of luck!

  • Reply

    metan

    April 11, 2012

    Great post :) We love to travel but we don’t do it overseas, we want to see as much of Australia as we can. Of course with the high cost of fuel and the long distances that entails, at times a flight to a faraway land would be the cheaper option!
    So many people complain that travelling is so expensive but really they just don’t want to stop spending money at home in order to go away later. Good on you for being able to make that your entire lifestyle!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much!

      What part of Australia are you in? Sounds like you’ve got a great plan set out! I’m sure you will find a way to accomplish it!

      What has been your favorite Ozzy experience thus far?

      • Reply

        metan

        April 11, 2012

        We live in a small town north east of Melbourne, in Victoria.
        Our favourite experience? So many it is hard to choose! Hmmm… Doing Skytrek (epic 4wd track) and standing on top of Mount Caernarvon, feeling like you were on top of the world.
        Or staying at a cattle station west of Alice Springs, it was only us, the wildlife and the caretakers on the 3000sqkm property. We set up camp on their front lawn and had a VERY relaxing time!
        Or maybe the time we drove to from Woomera to Coober Pedy (370 km of desert) in the driving rain and the entire town was flooded.
        So many things! Now you have made me want to speed up the plans for the next one!!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          WOW! Sounds like some amazing adventures! I am headed to OZ here in about a week and hope to have some once-in-a-lifetime-experiences like the ones you’ve had!

          And happy to hear I could provide encouragement! Let me know when you do get the next set of plans going! Would love to hear about it!

          • metan

            April 11, 2012

            Oooh, lucky! Which bit of Australia are you going to see?

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            I’m going to be visiting Sydney, Cairns, and Brisbane. =) Do you have any recommendations on places to see/things to do?

          • metan

            April 14, 2012

            We haven’t been up that way yet, we are still too in love with the SA outback and Central Aust! Melbourne to Cairns is about 2400kms, and to Brisbane is 1700km so they are not exactly weekend trips ;) I have heard that the Cairns Night Markets are pretty good though, it’s pretty hot up there, so stickynosing around in the cool of the night would certainly be preferred!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Completely understandable! Well, I’ll be sure to heed your wisdom and hopefully I can provide some tips for you guys if/when you decide to head up that way!

  • Reply

    Matt

    April 11, 2012

    Wonderful post! and obv congrats for being Freshy Pressed! will take into account some of your suggestions for defo. Pity is, I love too much good food and nice drinks to save so much before and when I am travelling! Being a local culture lover and discoverer is part of being a traveller itself, in my view! however, will keep on reading you for sure, keep on!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey Matt!

      Thank you so much! I am happy to provide my view, but like I try to emphasize, my way of travel is not for everyone. I completely agree that life is all about milking it to its fullest! Isn’t it great that we all have the opportunity to do so and do it in so many different ways? How lucky we are. =)

      Where in the world are you now? Have you had a favorite place to travel?

      • Reply

        Matt

        April 12, 2012

        Hey Hilary!

        I do think that life is definitely something worth living, even though sometimes tends to kick you straight in the gums to see whether you’re able to keep yourself straight!

        However. travelling is one of the gold hens of our lives, so why wasting it? I am definitely very much into ‘sociological travelling’ – as in, go and have a drink with a local or try the wickest food they have in the house – but that’s the good thing, everyone explores life and the world as they wish.

        at the moment, in terms of exploring, I am back living in my old little village in the north of Italy, pretty hectic as an experience, didn’t think it could be so weird to come back after many years. Anyhow, projects are on the move, hope they’ll work themselves out soon enough! what is you way of spending this weird spring instead?

        I have to say, so many places should already been visited, but I have no hurry, I’ll make it up soon!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Sounds like you’re already on the road to lots of amazing adventures! A little Italian village sounds like quite the home =).

          I’m leaving for Australia in a week. I’m very excited about it! Spring is bringing many fruitful experiences and I can’t wait to see what’s next!

  • Reply

    Raegan Wormwell

    April 11, 2012

    This is a seriously excellent article. Thank you. :D

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you, Raegan! You are seriously awesome. And I am super grateful that you took the time to comment.

      What kinds of adventures do you like to have?

      • Reply

        Raegan Wormwell

        April 12, 2012

        Like you, I think life is an adventure. Also like you, travel gives me an all-time buzz. I want to see it all, so part of the adventure is learning to incorporate what you’ve written about (I still wrestle with ‘security’ vs. freedom). Thanks for the inspiration. Next time you’re in London, I’d be happy to dip into my ‘freedom fund’ and shout you a coffee . :)

      • Reply

        Raegan Wormwell

        April 12, 2012

        Like you, I think life is an adventure. Also like you, travel gives me an all-time buzz. I want to see it all, so part of the adventure is learning to incorporate what you’ve written about (I still wrestle with ‘security’ vs. freedom). Thanks for the inspiration. Next time you’re in London, I’d be happy to dip into my ‘freedom fund’ and shout you a coffee. :)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          I fully support you in your mission to see and do it all! Let me know if you ever need more inspiration or some encouragement.

          And I cannot wait for that coffee =)

  • Reply

    RobRob

    April 11, 2012

    Hi Hillary! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed, and thanks for a great blog! I’ll be sharing with my friends and sending folks your way. I’m also looking forward to reading more! Congrats again, and keep up the great work!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi, Rob! Thank you so much! I am so happy to hear that you liked it!

      I hope you’ll stay in touch! Have a great week!

  • Reply

    26datesin2012

    April 11, 2012

    Loving your post SO MUCH! Traveling is one of my favourite things to do, but obligations with respect to work and finances keep me from it more often than not. I think you’re so brave to do what you’re doing… then again since this really is who you are, it may not be bravery, but a necessity after all. :)
    Wondering if I could do the same… maybe try it for a year…? You’re inspiring!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank YOU so much for commenting! I am tickled pink that you loved it so much!

      Trust me, I’m scared to death half the time that I travel. But I figure the easiest way to get over my fears are to face them head on. That day I went volcano boarding in a lightning storm was probably one of the scariest moments of my life. Now I look back on it as being one of my most bad-ass. =)

      I think you can absolutely do the same! Please let me know if I can answer any questions for you about gap-year travel. =)

      • Reply

        26datesin2012

        April 12, 2012

        Thanks, Hilary, that’s so sweet of you.
        Actually, I was wondering about the working part. You’re working while you’re traveling, right? Meaning you work in countries that are not your native land. Don’t you need visas and that kind of thing for it? And how do you find the jobs?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Great questions! You’re actually not alone when it comes to these questions and I’m compiling a blog answering your inquiries. I hope you’ll check back soon to see it!

          Happy adventuring. =)

  • Reply

    Tim Shey

    April 11, 2012

    The simplest and cheapest way to travel is to hitchhike. I have been hitchhiking for most of 15 years in the United States. I have met a lot of great people, and whenever I need to make a few bucks, some job comes my way. Just carry the most basic of gear: backpack,
    sleeping bag, a few clothes, some food and hit the road.

    “The First Time I Rode a Freight Train & other hitchhikng stories”
    http://tim-shey.blogspot.com/2012/02/new-book-first-time-i-rode-freight.html

    “Chris McCandless Revisited”
    http://tim-shey.blogspot.com/2010/08/chris-mccandless-revisited.html

    “Few Thumbs Barred From Rides”
    http://hitchhikeamerica.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/few-thumbs-barred-from-rides/

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thanks so much for the great advice! I will be sure to check these out. I am so happy to hear that hitchhiking has worked for you. I am only hesitant because I am a solo female traveler, and I don’t pretend to be stronger or braver than I am. My parents have utterly scared the crap out of me when it comes to hitchhiking. But maybe I will try it sometime!

      What has been your favorite place that you’ve visited thus far?

      • Reply

        Tim Shey

        April 11, 2012

        In the United States, I love Montana, Wyoming, parts of Idaho, eastern Oregon, the Oregon coast, New Mexico (I worked on an apple farm in Embudo, New Mexico years ago) and right here in Cedarville, California–I have been helping my friends for the past month; I will probably hit the road tomorrow and head north into Oregon. Cedarville is high desert country–right next to the Warner Mountains: the locals call it the California Outback.

        Years ago I hitchhiked in Ireland, Northern Ireland, England and Wales. I remember sleeping in this hay shed in Ireland–it was a mile from the ocean; you could hear the sea gulls. The parts of Ireland and Wales that I saw were beautiful. Scotland is very beautiful. I really only saw Victoria Station in London and walked around Southampton, so I didn’t a whole of England–though I am an Anglophile: I love John Milton, William Shakespeare, T.S. Eliot and Gerard Manley Hopkins. I thought Ireland was very hitchhiker-friendly. Safe travels.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow! What amazing stories you must have. Ireland sounds like such a friendly and interesting place. I haven’t gotten over that way yet but I hope to soon!

          Safe travels to you as well! Looking forward to hearing about your Oregon trip!

  • Reply

    Kari Andrews

    April 11, 2012

    This is a very insightful post. I love that you share the realistic facts and help us realize all that fun requires a lot of hard work and tough choices. My husband and I have been working and saving for a trip to the Caribbean and we finally just bought our tickets to leave next month! All the things we did without while working and saving can’t compare to the excitement of our first big trip as a married couple and the adventures and memories we’ll now share on our journey. We had to make choices, like waiting on a baby, to allow ourselves the freedom we need to travel for a while but I know we won’t regret the adventures we share before we settle down to house and baby. Thanks for the great post!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Kari!

      I am so happy to hear you liked it!

      I am so excited for you to being this new journey with your hubby! I am confident you will have an amazing time and that you will find your sacrifices well worth the effort!

      Travel safe and please let me know how your trip goes! I can’t wait to see photos and hear all about it!

  • Reply

    lys

    April 11, 2012

    I am scared from bear :) Interesting post. Thank you

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh no! Don’t be afraid of Bam Bam. He is a very friendly bear. =)

      And you’re very welcome! Hope you’ll come back and read more!

  • Reply

    Tim Shey

    April 11, 2012

    If that is you at the top of the blog, you are absolutely beautiful! I hope you have a very beautiful day.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Tim! Yes, that is me in the header photograph. Thank you so much for your kind words! I am flattered!

      Enjoy your day as well, and the many more to come!

  • Reply

    ernestwhile

    April 11, 2012

    This is a great post and I’m going to have to follow your blog. I’ve only started traveling for pleasure in the last few years… but here’s my question/problem: my expenses don’t go down when I travel, they only go up. I still have rent to pay at home; my accumulation of stuff needs a home base. Same goes for all the various monthly trappings like utilities.

    So, do you just not have an accumulation, or keep it all in storage? Do you couch surf or sublet when you’re “home”? Has all this been answered in another post, or in a future one? Because it seems to me that if I had no rent to pay, this kind of lifestyle would be much easier.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there!

      First off, I am so happy to hear that you liked the post!

      Next, I understand your concern about your home related expenses. To be honest, I don’t own a home or have to worry about that. But I do have advice and have done some research on ways to get around (or at least greatly reduce) those expenses. I am drafting a post about it right now. Will be up soon!

  • Reply

    Scott Mitchell

    April 11, 2012

    I’d be perfectly happy living like that! :D

  • Reply

    PortJeffersonHomes

    April 11, 2012

    Thank you , thank you thank you! a real inspiration and treat!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You’re very very welcome! =)

      What kinds of travels have you been on? Do you have any favorite places?

      • Reply

        PortJeffersonHomes

        April 12, 2012

        A few years ago I was fortunate enough to go to Havana, Cuba. I left JFK with a cultural visa for the 40th annual film festival. It was an amazing experience to visit the Island, the culture and the people, truly beautiful and smart.
        another favorite has been in Costa Rica, ” Tabacon” as well as the OSA peninsula to an Eco Lodge “Lapas Rios ” where I swam with three different types of dolphins in their environment as well as see the Macaws.
        I look forward to your travels and adventures, stay safe.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow! You’ve had some amazing experiences! Havana sounds amazing. I’m all about immersing yourself into other cultures!

          Please stay in touch! I look forward to sharing my adventures with you. =)

  • Reply

    Romantic Asian Guy

    April 11, 2012

    This is such an insightful post! Thank you for sharing with us! I admire how you’re able to head out into the horizon whenever you feel like it. Adventure. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for?

    The line “Would you rather have an immediate reward or recognize that by delaying it, you can increase your satisfaction down the road?” struck a chord with me. It’s one of those deep philosophical questions that always gets my mind running. Having said this, your post actually raises MANY interesting and important philosophical questions. Less is definitely more, and when people get rid of chasing after material things, life is fuller and more rewarding.

    I wish you well on your excursions. Thanks once again for sharing a few of the lessons you’ve learned. I’ve always dreamed of traveling to distant places as well, but have yet to take the leap, although I’m VERY intent on moving to Hong Kong and China in 2013 to see where life takes me:)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to write out this comment! I feel so grateful to be receiving such kind messages!

      I am happy to hear that you enjoyed it and that it made you think. I think you will definitely be able to make what you want happen. You can get there! And please enjoy the journey along the way. =)

      I hope you’ll stay in touch! Let me know how I can help motivate you on your adventures!

  • Reply

    Harp Kang

    April 11, 2012

    Your an inspiration! Seriously I love to read stories that get me going as well. Thanks for the post!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You’re very welcome! I’m glad to hear I could help motivate!

      What kinds of adventures do you like to have?

      Keep traveling!

  • Reply

    broadsideblog

    April 11, 2012

    I like the fact you make completely clear that this is not quick, easy and “have it all.” I also like that a young woman is out roaming the world and having adventures…one of the blog posts that gets the most hits on my site (almost daily) is about traveling alone as a woman, which I’ve done worldwide for decades. For some reason (?) many women are terrified of heading beyond their familiar territory, let alone without BFFs to hold their hand. I traveled alone for four months when I was 20 in Europe and loved it.

    I see you’re heading off soon to Oz and Fiji; I’ve been to both and enjoyed them. My favorite souvenir from Oz (oddly) is a beautiful sepia-toned photo of a woman by a local female photographer…one trick I’ve used many times is mail…if you love something bulky or large (like a poster) stick it into a sturdy tube and mail it home to yourself (or a friend’s address.) That way you can acquire a few souvenirs but not have to schlep them with you as you go.

    I admire your willingness to stick to your guns, so to speak. Who cares what age your computer is?! As long as you’re doing what you love, and able to finance it legally, good for you.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      WOW! Your comment gave me chills. You are such an inspiring woman! I love meeting strong women who have been there and done that. It really motivates me to keep going!

      I’m glad to hear that I’m not the only one who have braved the solo travel fears. They’ve popped up a bunch, and sometimes I worry about it, but I feel like it makes me a stronger person. How did you feel about traveling by yourself? What was your favorite trip to date?

      And what great advice about mailing stuff! Another reason why I love meeting sage kick-ass women!

      Thank you so much for taking the time to write this up. Please send me the link to your blog about solo female traveling. I would LOVE to read it!

      And please stay in touch! I’m looking forward to learning more about you.

  • Reply

    mzsura

    April 11, 2012

    Great article, and I totally agree it’s all about setting priorities first! We love to travel and would rather stay at home for dinner, give up cable, and live frugally to indulge in a fun travel experience! But that is what works for us… :-)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one making these sacrifices (some days it seems that way :).

      What has been your favorite experience thus far?

      • Reply

        mzsura

        April 12, 2012

        Definitely patagonia in southern argentina. Absolutely beautiful! It was well worth all of the saving. Our next big travel saving is going towards a trip to the Philippines, where I am originally from. Can’t wait to share that experience!

        Recently we directed our saving to our first house which I consider just another type of adventure :-)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Patagonia sounds wonderful! I’m hoping to get to Argentina by the end of the year, actually. One of those pulls, you know.

          And congratulations on the saving for your house! Sounds like you have some wonderful ventures abound. =) Please keep me informed of how things go!

          Be well~

  • Reply

    Intermittante

    April 11, 2012

    Wow, this post can apply to so many subjects in life you deal with if you’re struggling to fit in the 9 to 5 standard picture. Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed; well deserved if you ask me. You’ve got a story to tell.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      I am so happy to hear that you could find multiple applications to the blog! I think it all comes down to life values. I think once those are in order, anything can happen =).

      And thank you so much! I don’t know if I deserve it, but I am so grateful to have the opportunity to share my story with others!

      What kinds of adventures do you like to have?

      • Reply

        Intermittante

        April 12, 2012

        Adventures, well.. I used to be adventurous and did everything “god forbids” and visited many friends abroad, but now that I’m older (with a home, 2 cats and a lovely boyfriend) the adventures are slightly different. I’m more settled and I’ve found a bit of rest I think.. However; I can’t sit still. That’s why I’ve recently taken up belly dancing (which I’m blogging about too).

        As for traveling.. Love it, but with a mortgage and 25 off days a year, it’s not as frequent as maybe preferable. I’d love to still be able to do what you do, but I’m afraid with nearing my 30’s, some social security is a good, desirable thing. I’ll read about other peoples adventures and have my little dreams, and travel when I can, I suppose :)

        Which is working out; we’re soon going to Crete for the first time! Never been there, should be interesting :) Hope to find some belly dance courses Greek Style there. That’d be fun!

        I read that you dance too, btw?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Sounds like you’ve definitely had a very rich and fulfilling life! And I think you’re just transitioning into a different type of adventure. I look forward to seeing what this next phase brings for you!

          I love bellydancing! I’ve taken some classes and loved it. I do tap and vintage swing dancing. I competed and taught lindyhop and dance history for a couple of years. I still enjoy going out social dancing when I can. =)

          • Intermittante

            April 14, 2012

            Lindyhop? What’s that, I never heard of that one before. Sounds retro! :p

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Lindyhop is a type of swing dance (the original swing dance… actually ;). It’s what was popular during the end of WWII and the early 30’s. It’s SO much fun! Check it out if you get the chance!

          • Intermittante

            April 17, 2012

            Oooh, where’s ma Youtube. I should and I will. Thanks :)

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            Yeah let me know what you think!

  • Reply

    scintillatebrightly

    April 11, 2012

    prioritizing and budgeting are absolutely key. You’ve hit the nail on the head. Most people, and I fear I am included in that somewhat, just aren’t willing to REALLY do what it takes to live a life of travel. That’s why it stays a dream instead of a reality.

    Congrats on being freshly pressed.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Life is all about priorities! But I think everyone makes the right choices for them at that point in their life. Sometimes that means not budgeting and indulging. Other times that means really being frugal and sticking to your guns.

      And thank you, again!

  • Reply

    Carlie Chew

    April 11, 2012

    I wish I was like you and could just pick up and move. It’s a great way to live. I wish you the best in your travels : )

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Carlie!

      I think you absolutely can! I mean, I know we all have things holding us back, but there’s always a way to have an adventurous life! Let me know if I can help answer any questions you have about the lifestyle!

      Take care!

  • Reply

    Miss305

    April 11, 2012

    I love this! Even the basic ability to budget sometimes feels so overwhelming! Though I am unable to become a nomad, I do love to travel for vacations as often as possible, and thank you for the great advice! :D Silly lattes!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh I am so happy to hear you enjoyed it!

      And vacations are wonderful! I’m sure you make the most out of your trips! What has been your favorite place so far?

      And yes, those silly lattes will be the death of me… and many others so it seems ;)

  • Reply

    Sue

    April 11, 2012

    I loved your post. Just to let you know you inspire me :) Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much, Sue. I am inspired and so overwhelmed by the response I’ve been from FP. You guys are all amazing!

      What kinds of things do you like to do?

      • Reply

        Sue

        April 11, 2012

        :) I am really interested in traveling, and well basically seeing the world. Right now I am actually on an exchange trip in England, and I totally understand the whole budgeting thing, it pays off in the end though! haha

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Wow! What part of England? Sounds like quite the adventure to me!

          And yay for budgeting! Always a good choice =).

          • Sue

            April 12, 2012

            I am staying in the Midlands near Birmingham. most defiantly one of the best adventures so far in my life.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Sounds like it! Keep going for it! I’m sure more wonderful things are to come. =)

            Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    meenopolis

    April 11, 2012

    I’ll try it in a couple of months ! I am moving to australia and will hopefully be able to travel this part of the world !

    An other very useful travel tip to spend less money on food : my friend and I used to buy groceries for breakfast, lunch and dinner and so we’d avoid spending money in restaurant since we used to carry our lunch in our backpacks.you can eat for a whole week for less than 20$ !

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      What great advice! I think you’re absolutely right… finding ways to cut expenses is crucial!

      And congrats on the move to OZ! I am heading there in about a week for awhile, so hopefully I’ll be able to provide you with some advice!

      Keep it up! All the best.

  • Reply

    Audrey

    April 11, 2012

    This is great! And you’re right on! There’s something huge about choosing to delay gratification in favor of something you value much more. This is how I make my travels possible too. Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Audrey!

      Thank you so much! I am happy to hear that someone else utilizes the same methods!

      Whereabouts are you now?

      • Reply

        Audrey

        April 12, 2012

        I’m living steadily in Bellingham, WA right now but make an effort to travel internationally for humanitarian aid work at least once a year. It’s so helpful to know how to scale back on expenses to make those trips happen!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Oh okay! Bellingham is cool! I just got back from spending some time in Tacoma, Seattle, and Port Townsend. Washington has some amazing flavor =).

          And let me know how I can help you as you start planning!

          Happy Adventuring!

  • Reply

    IWritetheBlogs

    April 11, 2012

    This is truly a great article; I’ve never been able to articulate to people who ask me how I do it… well, how to do it. People don’t understand the give and take, and the security of working multiple jobs. Great job, and congrats on being Freshly Pressed!!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I am so happy to hear that this was a useful article for so many nomads!

      Where in the world are you now? Do you have a favorite adventure so far?

      • Reply

        IWritetheBlogs

        April 11, 2012

        I’m home in Chicago freelancing and preparing to take off for Ireland at the end of the month. My friend and I are doing a massive hike; she lives over there. I’m referring several people to your article; they’re always asking how I do it. : )

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          Whoohoo! That sounds amazing! You’ll have to let me know how it goes!

          And as always, I am so thankful for the referral. =)

  • Reply

    John Saddington

    April 11, 2012

    Reblogged this on 8BIT.

  • Reply

    Olivia Griselda

    April 11, 2012

    I found your tips to be very useful. They show how important it is to set one’s priorities in life. Thank you for sharing! :) — from a soon-to-be graduate.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Olivia!

      You’re very welcome! Congrats on your soon-to-be-degree! You’ve earned it!

      What are some of your priorities?

      Take care, hon!

  • Reply

    thefuture2020

    April 11, 2012

    This is a facinating article indeed. It relates to the common persons needs and shows true character. You are brave for admitting your short comings but that is the world we live in today. And by showing this you allow people to believe they can accomplish what they want so long as they have the knowledge and tools to get it done. You provided that with this article and i salute you and thank you for being humble throught it all -,o

    http://wp.me/2aAA8

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thank you so much for your kind words! I have been working so hard to try and convey the reality of the situation and am happy to hear that it’s appreciated!

      What kinds of adventures do you have in your life? I hope you’ll stay in touch!

      All the best,
      HB

      • Reply

        thefuture2020

        April 12, 2012

        I don’t mind staying in touch love but as far as my adventures go i can truthfully say i wouldn’t have any boundaries. I am a simple guy though, so everyday is pretty much its own adventure. ;)

  • Reply

    lespetitspasdejuls

    April 11, 2012

    Hello Lynn! I should recommend your blog to my friends and family who still haven’t understand how I make it through 2 years of travels (although I managed it differently as for now, but it’s the whole goal for the next few years)! once you’ve started, you can’t stop and you really re-evaluate your needs and desires and find out that what you really want (travel and adventures), you can have pretty easily once comfort and old society-compelled habits are out of your life. I wouldn’t have said it better myself, so thanks for the post! aaaahhh if they could read english… ;-)
    Keep it on! and maybe we’ll meet on the road or on a couch somewhere since we’re on the same gig.
    Jul’

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey Jul!

      Thank you so much for your comment! I am so glad to hear that you enjoyed the post!

      I hope we one day meet on the road as well. Whereabouts are you now?

      Be well!
      -HB

      • Reply

        lespetitspasdejuls

        April 12, 2012

        Hello Hilary,

        I’m currently in Patagonia Chilena (1more week!) before hitting the road north with stop overs before Santiago and Easter Island. Then it’s back to Mexico, where I’ll try and settle for a while (there’s a boy involved… ;-) but traveling remains a priority. If you ever get there, get in touch, we’re in CS community as well and love it!
        Keep it on yourself! Take care and Enjoy, always!
        And, once again, congrats on the Freshly Pressed! I see lots of other comments and likes have followed!… Good job!
        Jul’

        (sorry for the name swap, too much reading over other comments and names…)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Don’t even worry about it! I figured as much ;)

          And wow! What an adventurous life you lead! Please keep in touch and let me know how things progress. I will be sure to let you know when I get down that way. I’m actually hoping to get to Argentina by the end of the year, so I might be messaging you for tips and tricks myself!

          Be well, and happy adventuring!

          • lespetitspasdejuls

            April 13, 2012

            Oh I know life is gonna be good as long as I never forget again what I truly want! I’ll be happy to share tips and tricks with you about Argentina or other countries in latin america (rewriting my world trip page on my own blog, so it says more about them).
            I’ll see you around, hopefully!
            Enjoy!
            J.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            I would love that! Please let me know when it’s up and running so I can go take a look!

            And I hope to see you around, too! Please stay in touch! Safe travels!

          • lespetitspasdejuls

            April 16, 2012

            Oh it’s already up and running, I’ve just decided (masochistically…) to update the 2010 trip and actually talk more about it than the few lines I first wrote. it’s lespetitspasdejuls.wordpress.com (translating as “Jul’s little steps”). I’ll be happy to have your insight! But it’s on its way…
            Let’s keep in touch, definitely! See you around! and happily reading you again!
            J.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            Thanks for the link! I will be sure to check it out when I can!

            And yes, please do! See you around, I hope =).

  • Reply

    haiideb

    April 11, 2012

    I am very frugal with my money and I’m saving to travel when i graduate high school or college. Thank you so much for your insight!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You’re very welcome! Being frugal is half the battle! If you can do that you can make anything happen =).

      Where do you want to travel?

      Keep in touch!

      • Reply

        haiideb

        April 13, 2012

        Yeah I’m glad to hear that helps, I want to travel to Amsterdam for family and to learn a different language, but the nomadic life sounds glorious!
        and will do!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Amsterdam sounds like a great adventure! Let me know how I can help guide you!

          Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    Emmie Mears

    April 11, 2012

    Awesome, awesome blog. Reading this sort of poked me hard in the chest and reminded me of my dream. I dug myself into a lot of debt in college (some of it through my study abroad…cough), and my husband and I are working to get out so we can travel. Reading this was also a helpful thing about that — just about being frugal and differentiating between need vs. want.

    Thank you so much for sharing. This has renewed my drive to get my arse back abroad — I lived in Scotland and Poland for much of college, and I miss it. So much.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi miss Emmie!

      Thank you so so much! I am happy to hear that the blog resonated with you.

      It’s funny that you should mention travel abroad. That was one of the things I wish I would have done while in college, and partly what spurned my travels to date. I didn’t get a lot of the typical college experiences since I went to the local university and didn’t live in a dorm, but I think each situation has pros and cons. I think you made the right decision for you at the time. But I am happy to hear you haven’t lost the travel bug! I’m sure you will find a way to make it work for you soon!

      And please let me know if you ever need future encouragement. I am happy to help =)

  • Reply

    James

    April 11, 2012

    Hi Hilary, thank you for writing such a detailed article – so many of us have dreams of doing that once-in-a-lifetime trip but don’t know where to begin! It’s brilliant that you address the practical side of things, I really appreciate how you include both the pros and cons of each point.

    Couldn’t agree more with the point about buying experiences – I used to collect all manner of souvenirs as a kid, and then I gradually realised that nothing could beat memories and photographs. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey James!

      I am so glad to hear that you liked it. In truth, I was really kicking myself for being so wordy… I guess things have a way of working themselves out, don’t they? =)

      And here’s to the memories! Looking forward to hearing more about your adventures and the memories you’re making!

  • Reply

    Caitlin Ricci

    April 11, 2012

    Great financial tips here. Even if you aren’t into travelling, the idea of holding off on that $40 shirt now so that you can afford a home faster is an important concept to hold on to.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thanks, Caitlin! I’m glad you could find some everyday use in the post!

      What kinds of things do you want to save up for?

      • Reply

        Caitlin Ricci

        April 11, 2012

        House, new car, horse, tuition, a new pistol… nothing super fun like a month in India like you do :).

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 12, 2012

          Uhhh… I don’t know about you but a horse and a pistol sound like SUPER fun to me! And again, it’s not about comparing. As long as what you’re saving for brings you happiness, that’s what matters!

          What breed do you want? I used to be a catch-rider for show barns a few years back. Just remember that the cheapest purchase when it comes to horses is buying the horse! ;)

          • Caitlin Ricci

            April 12, 2012

            I’ve owned and leased in the past so I absolutely hear you about the cheapest price being the actual horse. I’m leaning toward Norwegian Fjords. I’ve owned a mustang and an andalusian x quarter horse, leased a quarter horse, an arabian, and a morgan. Something about a brave, stocky little pony works for me though.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Andalusians are one of my favorites! I’m partial to the warmblood breeds myself (I used to do hunter/jumper and my legs are REALLY long, so I feel retarded on a shorter horse ;) but I agree, there is something very reliable and comforting about the stocky horses.

            Please let me know how it goes and what you end up with! Can’t wait to see photos!

          • Caitlin Ricci

            April 13, 2012

            Lol. Warmbloods are awesome but jumping isn’t for me. I’ve tried it and I admire those that can. But I’m super short so big horses make me feel all kinds of small which isn’t the best feeling when you’re on top of 1,000 pounds of animal that’s nearly five feet just at the shoulder. Hopefully it’ll happen soon!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Haha, it’s all about enjoying yourself right? Otherwise, why bother?

            Glad you’ve found your niche! I’ll be sending good thoughts your way!

          • Caitlin Ricci

            April 16, 2012

            Thanks! you too!

  • Reply

    Miriam Joy

    April 11, 2012

    I think a lot of your budgeting advice could apply to any lifestyle, not just a nomadic one. I have to admit that this sounds like fun, travelling all over the place, even though I’m more of a stay at home person due to my eating habits and lack of adventurous spirit ;) But I would like to travel more when I’m older (since, you know, I doubt I’d be allowed, being only sixteen).
    Congrats on Freshly Pressed :D

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Miriam!

      I’m so happy to hear that you found the article applicable to any lifestyle.

      And I think if travel is something you want to do when you get older, you will absolutely find a way to make it happen! Please let me know if you have any questions or how I can help you along the way. =)

      Be well!

  • Reply

    titawrites

    April 11, 2012

    Love this post. So many great tips and ideas. I would love to be a nomad traveler…one day. For now, a mother of two and working on the teenage years. I especially love the line “I tend to opt for purchasing experiences for myself. Memories are forever.” I try to instill this into my children. Kids have a way of wanting toys, video games and things. Instead I try to get them to try new things. Btw ~ Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so so much for your sweet thoughts! I am confident you will have many wonderful adventures to come! And what an adventure motherhood must be! Good on you for instilling non-materialistic values. They are some very lucky kids!

      Please keep in touch! I look forward to hearing more about your life! Thanks again for commenting. =)

  • Reply

    April 11, 2012

    Love your blog, whenever i travel i take along a few gold sovereign coins. they can be exchanged for local currency at pretty much any jewellers, pawn shop and many banks. Best of all no money exchange charges to pay. You can buy gold sovereigns over the internet http://www.bullionuk.com/products/gold/coins/great_britain/full-sovereign-gold-2012.html

  • Reply

    jo

    April 11, 2012

    Love your blog, whenever i travel i take along a few gold sovereign coins. they can be exchanged for local currency at pretty much any jewellers, pawn shop and many banks. Best of all no money exchange charges to pay. You can buy gold sovereigns over the internet http://www.bullionuk.com/products/gold/coins/great_britain/full-sovereign-gold-2012.html

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thanks for the great idea, Jo! I will have to check it out!

      Wishing you the best along your travels,
      HB

  • Reply

    April 11, 2012

    I have to say that you’ve hit the nail on the head. I spent a year living like a nomad. I stayed where I had work, I went to new places on whims and found random jobs (milked baby buffalo and earned some free pizza!), I slept in questionable places…you know the routine. I loved it. I felt so connected and alive but it is also somewhat mentally exhausting to always be asking yourself “Where am I going to stay?” “Can I buy food in this country on this exchange rate with what I have?”….you find a lot of kindness and generosity in the world, however and it helps relieve the pressure. I’m gearing up to do something similar again-maybe a slightly different approach but once a nomad, always a nomad. Wonderful post!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow! Sounds like you had some amazing experiences! I would love to hear more about them sometime. Did you have a favorite adventure?

      And I completely agree; it’s overwhelming to find the kind and generous people are out there in the world. I think travel makes you realize that the world is such a beautiful and amazing place.

      I hope you get the chance to be nomadic again soon! Please keep in touch!

  • Reply

    Morgan

    April 11, 2012

    Wow. You are inspiring. I’ve NEVER successfully budgeted anything. Ever.

    • Reply

      Morgan

      April 11, 2012

      Also, I’m drinking a latte as I read this. Buh.

      • Reply

        Hilary Billings

        April 11, 2012

        This made me laugh so hard! And don’t even worry about it. Lattes are the weakness of the world… I’m sure of it! ;)

        • Reply

          Morgan

          April 12, 2012

          Budgeting would probably also be good for my waistline because, surprise, I am considering buying another latter right now! Somebody needs to stop me!!!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Haha, enjoy them! Enjoying life is more important than a small waist ;).

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Morgan!

      Thank you so much for your kind words! And that’s okay! No time like the present, right? ;)

      Let me know if I can help you figure out any of the budgeting stuff! Happy to do so.

      • Reply

        Morgan

        April 12, 2012

        I think what I really need is a little person on my shoulder who yells at me when I try to go shopping. It doesn’t help that shopping is part of my job. I am screwed. BUT you are honestly so inspiring, I might try my hardest to take a long hard look at how I spend my money. A study was done recently that said people who spend their money on “experiences” rather than material things are happier. Makes a lot of sense!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          I will have to search for that article… sounds like my kind of research!

          What is it that you do? And don’t be so hard on yourself. It will all come together when you’re ready for it to do so. =)

          • Morgan

            April 13, 2012

            I’m a clothing designer for a juniors brand … actually getting ready to travel for trend research (aka shopping). At least getting paid to shop gives me an excuse! But I do think it’s high time I made myself stick to a budget. Here’s a link to that study: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/05/fashion/studies-link-personalities-to-buying-habits.html?_r=3&partner=rss&emc=rss

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Whoa! How cool are you? Let me know if you ever need models (or someone to travel with)! Kudos to you for being super awesome.

            And thanks for the link! I will check it out!

            Please stay in touch!

          • Morgan

            April 24, 2012

            Thanks, Hilary! You are too sweet, but I think you sound pretty awesome yourself! And you’re a great motivator. I will definitely stay in touch!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 24, 2012

            You’re very welcome! And you’re very kind.

            I’m looking forward to it! Hope all is well!

  • Reply

    corlosky

    April 11, 2012

    I wish I could live a nomadic lifestyle. I plan on traveling as much as possible in the future, so I look forward to some great tips and advice from you. Can’t wait! And congrats on being freshly pressed :)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey there!

      I know you will absolutely enjoy it! Let me know if you have any questions. Happy to help you get on the path to adventure!

      And thank you so much! I am so excited about it!

  • Reply

    skintinthecity

    April 11, 2012

    What an amazingly full post, Nomad Grad! So much great stuff in here – thank you. I agree with so much of it – and it also gave me seriously itchy feet.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much for your kind words! I am happy to hear that it resonates with you.

      Whereabouts do you want to go?

  • Reply

    insidetheindividual

    April 11, 2012

    This is great! How do you pay off your college loans while on this tight budget? Perhaps you figure it in when you calculate your spending?

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh I’m so happy to hear you liked it!

      Actually, I didn’t end up having any college loans. I actually got paid to go to school by my university. Kind of a long story. I will be sure to blog about it to help explain that, as well as how to budget loans into the equation!

  • Reply

    Jason Ministries

    April 11, 2012

    Must be a very exciting life you lead. :) Thanks for sharing. On a side note, and if you care to share, how can one find work writing articles for magazines & newspapers, ghost blogging, or social media marketing? I’m about one year into blogging and would like to expand beyond my current scope.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you for reading! I am very happy with my life, but it is not for everyone.

      I’ve been getting a lot of questions about this. I am in the process of drafting a post about this and will post in the next few weeks! Please check back!

  • Reply

    Mr. Z

    April 11, 2012

    The nomadic lifestyle you describe seems so alluring :D
    Perhaps 10 years down the line, I’d be able to try it myself.
    Great post!~

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      It is quite an addictive lifestyle. I think I’d have a hard time going back to a ‘normal’ lifestyle!

      Where do you want to go? What kinds of things do you want to do? Here’s to dreaming!

  • Reply

    April 11, 2012

    I’ll be watching your blogg closely, this is the life style I desire to live.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Please let me know if you have any questions, or how I can help you achieve your goal!

      Be well~

  • Reply

    A. S. Ellis

    April 11, 2012

    This is FANTASTIC. Thank you for sharing this with the world! It reminds me of something Zig Ziglar said, “The chief cause of failure and unhappiness is trading what you want most for what you want now.”

    You’ve clearly got the discipline nailed down! It’s inspiring. And awesome.

    And deserving of Freshly Pressed! Congratulations on that!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! Really, I am so grateful to be able to read such supportive comments!

      What a great quote. Thank you so much for sharing =).

      What kinds of things do you want to do with your time?

      Stay in touch!

  • Reply

    The Boy!

    April 11, 2012

    I am happy for the life you live. Your tips and tricks on budgeting and stretching the dollar is how I mostly travel too, but the big difference is you’re living the “life” I’m dreaming of. I admire your will power. You have your priorities set :)

    One question, do you ever worry about those WHAT IFs, like if you can’t find your next job in time before the rent is due? How do you deal with that?

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey there!

      First of all, thank you so much for your kind words! I am so overwhelmed with the support I’ve been receiving.

      As far as the What If’s… I seem to be getting that question a lot today so I will be posting about it shortly! Too much to answer in a comment =).

      What kind of ‘life’ do you want to live?

      • Reply

        The Boy!

        April 12, 2012

        I look forward to reading that post.
        The life I would like to live would be one where I worry less and do more. Fulfill those little desires and like I read somewhere, put my intention out into the universe :).

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          =) It’s all about voicing your wants to the universe. It’s amazing what vocalizing those desires will bring to you.

          I find that I worry less the more that I travel. I mean, I’m still a perfectionist and worry wart at heart, but the more I see what real struggle and hardship looks like, the more gratitude and appreciation I have for my blessings. =)

          • The Boy!

            April 15, 2012

            You know what, I just added that “intention” line in my favorite quotes list with your name next to it. Thanks.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            =) That is so sweet! Thank you.

            And I have a quote list too. Funny how life goes.

            Please stay in touch! I’m always looking to help others along their journeys however I can.

          • The Boy!

            April 16, 2012

            =)

  • Reply

    girlnextfloor

    April 11, 2012

    Back when I was a freelance journalist and had a freer and more flexible schedule, my life sounded much like this post! It was completely worth it, and I don’t regret a single trip that I took during those years. With that said, I got a much slower start on things like retirement planning and saving for an eventual mortgage, and I very rarely had health care coverage! As I moved into my 30s, my priorities shifted. (I still travel, but it’s no longer my fulltime lifestyle.) I’m curious to know if you’ve already found a way to budget for such things, if you don’t think you’ll ever consider them priorities, or if you’re just putting them off for later down the road. In any case, enjoy the adventure! This is such a big, fantastic world with so much to experience!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi there!

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment!

      Being a freelance journalist sounds amazing! I would love to get into a career like that! Hoping an avenue like that will open up here shortly =)

      It sounds like you have had a very full life! As far as my future planning is concerned, I don’t have much saved at the moment. I spent a lot of my late teens saving and saving for such things, but life eventually got in the way and the savings went to other areas of my life (school, apartments, injuries). I will be sure to post more on it so that I can help elucidate my choices. =)

      Please keep writing! Looking forward to following your adventures!

  • Reply

    aimsphotos

    April 11, 2012

    Thanks for this post! It was a helpful inspiration for my traveling longings! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed too! :-)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! You are so sweet! And I am SO excited about it (I cannot stop jumping around).

      What kinds of places do you want to travel to?

      • Reply

        aimsphotos

        April 12, 2012

        Oh, my list is super long haha! First off would probably be more places in Europe.
        What’s the next place on your list?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Europe is amazing! So many great countries and history!

          I am on my way to Australia here shortly and I am very excited about it! But I have been feeling a strong pull towards Argentina, so I’m looking to put that intention out to the universe. =)

  • Reply

    100 Days of Summer

    April 11, 2012

    Love to travel also! Unfortunately, I am trapped now until the kids are old enough to carry their own suitcases, so right now I am just dreaming and living vicariously through blogs like yours. Thanks.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much!

      I am so happy to hear you love to travel as well! They will be old enough to travel before you know it. Enjoy that amazing adventure while you can!

      What has been your favorite trip so far?

      • Reply

        100 Days of Summer

        April 11, 2012

        Favorite trip – such a hard question. Gotta go with Belize and the Blue Hole. AMAZING, even before I saw the sharks! Do you have a favorite place?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow! That sounds unbelievable! Belize is definitely on my list of places to see. =)

          Hmm… I have so thoroughly enjoyed everywhere I’ve gone thus far. I think volcano boarding in Nicaragua was pretty unbelievable. But I hope to keep building on these amazing moments. =)

  • Reply

    rose petal dreams

    April 11, 2012

    Reblogged this on rosepetaldreams and commented:
    This totally inspired me!

  • Reply

    wanderlust misfit

    April 11, 2012

    You are amazing awesome wonderful and I want to meet you and devour the world with you. I’ve only just taken to the bohemian world of endless lovely nomadic adventures and I’m still trying to figure it all out, and I just found your blog and I’m going to keep following it and your travels because you definitely have things figured out and why not learn from the best?

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow! What a compliment! Thank you so much for your kind words!

      I am so happy to hear that you find the blog inspirational and I absolutely encourage you to keep going! Maybe one day we’ll have the chance to meet and grab coffee somewhere =).

      Looking forward to following your adventures!

  • Reply

    Jean

    April 11, 2012

    It’s great you have thought through the pros and cons of feeding your travel passion. I’ve been unemployed 3 times in life with the longest @ 18 months long. Honest, it’s just easier for me, to have a peace of mind to know that I have some money so basic needs are looked after…when I am not travelling or later, I will not be physically capable of travelling far in frail, old age: I can’t rely on anyone looking after me. It’s just reality we have to face and plan for.

    May I suggest to anyone reading my comment: Consider seriously a cycling lifestyle. It will truly get you budgeting and how much/little you really need to buy since you have to transport the weight by bike. So not much junk to cart home! It also is great way to see the world and if you’re game, camp along the way. One also gets the double benefit of becoming fit over time but it doesn’t feel like exercise at times.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thanks, so much Jean! I’m absolutely with you about taking the time to travel now!

      And I think that’s great advice to anyone looking to travel! There are so many ways to make travel happen and it’s great to hear other avenues!

      Do you have a favorite place to travel?

  • Reply

    Anon.

    April 11, 2012

    This is brilliant! I’m going to keep watching your blog. :). I’ve considered doing what you are doing because I, too, think life and culture and people just offer so many new interesting experiences. Thank you for doing this blog. I’ve got the budgeting down to a tee seeing as I’ve lately had to at home and I must say, it’s really not that hard once you get used to it. It also changes your general world view. You realize how important and gratifying the simple things are. :). The only thing I get nervous with in nomadic travel is how I would go about finding work, how I would chat to people, get to know them. I guess I’d be socially awkward because I’m inexperienced somewhat but could you do a post one day on your experiences in getting work in some different countries/overall general experience with that? I’m not a postgrad, not even completed a University degree (only college and school) so I guess that I would be at a slight disadvantage?

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey there!

      First of all, thank you so much for your kind words! I feel so grateful to be receiving comments from nice people such as yourself!

      Next, I do NOT think you will be at a disadvantage at ALL! But I am MORE than happy to draft up a post to answer your questions. On the fly all I can say is just go for it. Practice practice practice =).

  • Reply

    flaymzofice

    April 11, 2012

    I love this post!! This is my life – I’m also a broke post-grad! My bottom line is almost always: ‘will this matter in a few weeks?’ – such a good point to swear by. And I also, refuse to regret any food purchases – if it’s inherent in the culture of the place you’re visiting, why settle for something you know and like, when you could try something new that you might not, but that you might also not have the opportunity to try again? Following!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! And I am happy to hear there is another unique adventurer out there! It’s always nice to meet other inspiring and go-getter people!

      What are you up to these days?

      Looking forward to hearing more about your story!

      • Reply

        flaymzofice

        April 12, 2012

        Unfortunately, I’m back in the ‘pursuing funding’ side of things as of right now but hoping to be back on the road (or in our case, on the snow) by Jan. Longest time sitting still in five years so will be itching to go by next year but should have enough cash to play for a while after that. Here’s hoping!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          I’m sure you can make it happen! And let me know if you ever need more motivation to do so. =)

  • Reply

    tryingtoknowthyself

    April 11, 2012

    Your post was super inspiring. I’ve been wanting to study abroad for a while but I’ve always wondered… thanks for the advice!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thank you so much! I am so happy to hear I could inspire you to go for it! Where do you want to go?

      Keep at it!

      • Reply

        tryingtoknowthyself

        April 11, 2012

        I’m thinking about Paris :D

      • Reply

        tryingtoknowthyself

        April 12, 2012

        I’m thinking about Paris :D

        I did have a question though, how to you manage the language barrier while traveling?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Paris is amazing! You will love it!

          The short answer? I learn helpful phrases, try to make bilingual friends, and spend a lot of time playing charades. I will blog about it in the future and go into further details. I hope you’ll check back! =)

  • Reply

    April 11, 2012

    Have you made it to Aus yet? I recall you mentioned plans for a visit.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Not yet! I leave in ten days! I’m very excited about it! Have you ever been?

  • Reply

    elsethenomad

    April 11, 2012

    I absolutely love and applaud this post! I am currently in the saving a lot, a lot to start up my nomadic life next fall! It was a hard blow to realize that I probably should be buying those mocha’s everyday. But I’ve discovered that I like tea! A bit cheaper, and a bit healthier! Great post, again!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thanks so much, girl! Yeah, I’ve started making my own coffee at home. Not quite as tasty but definitely cheaper =).

      I encourage you to keep it up! Looking forward to seeing where you end up!

      • Reply

        elsethenomad

        April 11, 2012

        Saving money sure is tasty! :) haha As of now, I’ve got three months in Norway, three months in Thailand and at least 1-2 weeks in Iceland coming my way, so cheapy coffee-tea is my best friend right now.

  • Reply

    greceln

    April 11, 2012

    Great post. I’m thinking cruise ships for myself for now and see how it works out. In my research, if you don’t want to commit to 6 – 8 months as required to work on most cruises, try applying as a guest lecturer. You won’t get paid much or not at all, but you will get a free trip. You would probably be on a ship for up to three weeks and you can do it as often or as little as you want in a year. You’re only required to provide lectures while the ship is at sea meaning you have the freedom to catch an excursion or go out on your own at each port. You do have to provide up to three examples of what you would talk about. Do read about the companies you apply for so you know what their expectations are about. For example, I was on a Holland America ship and the exploration team discussed countries they’ll be visiting. The one guy was allowed to talk about astronomy and birds because he managed to connect it to these countries.

    Another tip, because you are so frugal and I’m totally with you on that, try Meetup online. It is a social website and with various interest groups. Choose groups you would be interested in in the location you’ll be visiting. I believe it’s North America only. Some groups will charge you an annual fee (for the maintenance of the website – it’s $150USD for the organizer to keep it up) to be a member while others won’t. Many of them will provide free events like walking/hiking or meeting at cafes where you pay your own way. You really have to know your stuff and the city you’ll be visiting. Toronto, for examples has many free festivals around the city and many meetup groups will plan events around these events. Though you don’t have to join meetup to attend these festivals, it’s actually fun to be around people of similar interests and it’s a good way to meet new people. University of Toronto provide free movie screenings as well as astronomy lectures. That’s a lot of fun. Though I don’t necessarily have to be a part of a meetup group for this, I would only know about them because I do see it get posted and the fact that someone is willing to organize it is great.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey there! Thanks so much for taking the time to give me all of your sage advice! I would LOVE to be booked as a lecturer somewhere. I will have to try it out!

      And I never thought to use Meetup while I was out of the country. I participate with meetup groups locally, but that’s a great idea! Thank you so much!

      Do you have a most memorable trip or adventure that you’ve been on?

      Thanks again!

      • Reply

        greceln

        April 12, 2012

        Hi, I do Meetup locally, though it would be interesting if you did events with meetup in other areas. I don’t know if joining would be good, though if you see an open site where it’s not membership exclusive, you should try messaging the organizer in advance if you can a join an event or two. The other day, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to join a group but saw an event that seemed interesting. I didn’t want to miss out. I explained this to the guy and he said it was fine for me to come. I ended up joining because it’s what I want. In your case, if your on vacation, message the organizer saying you would like to participate but don’t live in the area. Then send your blog about your experience as a world traveller and say how much it would add to the experience if you could join even for just one event. I’m not sure if it’s around the world, but I definitely know it’s at least in North America.

        Definitely look into being a guest lecturer. With all that you’ve done, you can probably lecture on the best of each country such as food or most interesting finds.

      • Reply

        greceln

        April 12, 2012

        What I know for sure is that Meetup is in North America. Not too sure about worldwide. I do events locally. I’m sure if you tried, organizers will allow you to come to an event or two in town when visiting without having to sign up for their group. Message them personally and explain your life experience and blog. Especially in your case where you travel a lot, it would be difficult to join and expect to be committed to it. Anyone who doesn’t let you in is crazy. The other day, I saw an event posted and felt like I wanted to try it out first. I messaged the organizer and he said sure. Afterwards, I realize it’s what I want to be a part of it and joined.

        Definitely look into being a guest lecture. With your life experience, you can pretty much talk about anything travel related from food, culture and interesting finds.

        As for my favourite place, it would have to be Ushuaia, Argentina. I was there just a day but I was awestruck. We were lucky to come on a day where it was sunny. It’s usually cloudy with chance of precipitation according to locals. So there’s a bit of rivalry with Chile about the slogan “End of the World.” Look it up and then visit Puerto William in Chile. Aside from Punta Arenas, Valparaiso and Rio de Janeiro, I would go back to that place. For Ushuaia, please visit my blog: http://bigmonkeyadventures.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/sock-monkeys-love-affair-with-patagonia/. If you wait a little bit, I’ll be writing about penguins in Punta Arenas, Chile.

        I don’t get to travel as much as you do. So I admire you to have the courage and the will to make your dreams happen.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Thanks so much for all of the great advice! I will start looking into it!

          And it’s interesting that you mention Argentina… I’ve been looking to head that way in the past month or so. I will be sure to check out the blog!

          Happy adventuring! Please keep in touch!

  • Reply

    Fantastic post! I can’t wait to start traveling more again, your article was great inspiration. Thanks for the great advice!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      You’re very welcome! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment!

      Where do you want to travel next?

      • Reply

        My next scheduled trip is to Poland in July- a delayed honeymoon for my husband and I. I’ve been to Poland several times when I was a kid (most of my family lives there), but I can’t wait to return now as an adult and get a new perspective on it!

  • Reply

    Les Eddins

    April 11, 2012

    Glad I noticed this on google .

  • Reply

    Say Gudday

    April 11, 2012

    Fantastic. Practical, mature, intelligent. As always. Where are you now, Vegas?

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much!

      I’m in Vegas, but I leave for OZ in nine days! Any advice, fellow traveler? =)

      • Reply

        Say Gudday

        April 11, 2012

        Woo hoo! You’re going to LOVE it. How long are you going for and do you have anything planned already?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 12, 2012

          I’ll be there for 2 weeks, stopping through Sydney, Cairns and Brisbane. I have two lovely readers of mine who have offered to take me around Sydney, but besides that I”m pretty open!

          • Say Gudday

            April 12, 2012

            Oh if you’ve got local guides then you are really going to have a good time. Do the bridge walk in Sydney, the view is spectacular. Your guides will take you to the local places tourists never see. Can’t wait to hear how it went.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Can’t wait to share! =)

            Where in the world are you now?

          • Say Gudday

            April 13, 2012

            Just moved the wife from AZ to L.A. My boat is in San Diego and I’ll be heading back there in a few weeks to sail out to catalina Island. Just migrated my WP blog over to it’s own server (sayGudday.com) so you’ll see articles and photos n stuff there

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Wow, sounds like you’ve got your own adventure going on! And I will be sure to check it out!

  • Reply

    InvestSafely

    April 11, 2012

    Great post! You hit the nail on the head…budget so you can buy experiences, not just get by.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I am so happy to hear you agree!

      What are some things you save for?

      • Reply

        InvestSafely

        April 14, 2012

        Easier said than done, for sure! Right now, it is saving to pay off my mortgage and make my first mini-retirement a little easier to afford…

  • Reply

    seekingmonsieur

    April 11, 2012

    Love it! Welcome to the club. I have been on the road for 14 years and half the time people can’t keep up to my whereabouts unless I send a postcard. Smart and practical advice. Stay safe but above all have fun.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! I am happy to be a part of it!

      Wow, sounds like quite an amazing life! What do you do for work? Have you had a favorite trip/adventure so far?

      • Reply

        seekingmonsieur

        April 11, 2012

        Travel nursing and freelance writer. I also use trips as birthday presents to myself. Past adventures have been a true learning experience. I have meet with prejudice as well as insight. Thank goodness their are more nice people out there than bad. My favorite places so far are Savannah, GA, Ft. Lauderdale, FL and Baltimore. I save my money and travel overseas a lot with my favorite being London and Aussie, the land down under. I’m planing a trip to Costa Rica for my birthday.

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 13, 2012

          Wow, it sounds like you’ve had some amazing experiences! I’m actually headed to Australia here in about a week. Do you have any recommendations for favorite places or experiences?

          How did you break into freelance writing? Always looking for ways to expand my knowledge base about that!

          Be sure to let me know how Costa Rica goes! Safe travels!

          • seekingmonsieur

            April 13, 2012

            I enjoyed Sydney and Cains. I took a side trip to a beautiful rain forest with only 10 of us in the group which made it very personal and fun. I have been writing since I was a child. I started by doing freelance work for a newspaper and then submitting to magazines. I would also write to Letters to the Editor to practice and then found my work in print. My website, http://www.writerontheroadway.com has my media page that you can look at. Wish I could return to Australia with you. Have fun, safe travels and let me know how it went when you return.

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Wow, that definitely sounds fun! And I will definitely be checking out your page! This is a very new route for me so I’m looking to learn from those who are already successful!

            Thank you so much for your well-wishes. Maybe next time you’ll be able to come with me!

          • seekingmonsieur

            April 16, 2012

            I keep a bag packed and ready for such occassions! Just give me a heads up and lets kick up some dust together!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            =) My kind of nomad! And yes, let’s do it!!!

  • Reply

    triptracker

    April 11, 2012

    I love your article. I totally agree with you that if you want to do it….really want to….then there is always a way….you just have to be willing to sacrifice. My husband and I travel quite a bit two, mostly in the US but even here there is so much to see. We have made several changes in our lives so that we make traveling a priority.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh, I am so happy to hear that you agree!

      I’ve done some travel through the US, but you are absolutely right! There is so much to see and do! What has been one of your favorite memories so far?

      Safe travels!

  • Reply

    Ed

    April 11, 2012

    Wow, you have eloquently elucidated my thoughts about life and money exactly. I totally agree about spending money on experiences rather than stuff. Thank you for giving some pointers to us fellow nomads! Happy travels! I hope to run into you in some distant land sometime ;)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Ed! I am so happy I could help!

      I would love to meet you somewhere down the road! I always love to meet other travelers! Whereabouts are you now?

      • Reply

        Ed

        April 11, 2012

        At the moment, I’m finishing up my own pragmatic route by graduating with a BA in International Studies (with a focus on politics and diplomacy), though I’m fast becoming disenchanted with the whole school thing.

        I’m happy to say, though, that I’m extremely blessed to have an internship at the U.S. Embassy in Paris waiting for me from June to December. I am an unabashed francophile, and your posts about Paris warmed my little French heart.

        If you pass through Paris again, you must let me know!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 11, 2012

          WHOA! What a cool degree and internship waiting for you! Sounds like quite the experience! I can’t wait to hear more about it!

          And yes, I will be sure to let you know!

          • Ed

            April 12, 2012

            By the way, I didn’t answer your original question, but I’m currently in College Station, Texas. There’s nothing here but my university, but I’m from Austin, so if you ever want to take a trip to the Live Music Capital of the World, hit me up. I love playing tour guide in my Austin-tatious hometown. :)

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Whoohoo! I will definitely let you know if/when I head that way! =)

  • Reply

    arifqodari

    April 11, 2012

    Love this story much. Inspiring.
    This inspires me to start traveling, getting new experiences, go to new places and meet new peoples. Thanks.

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Oh I am so happy to hear that you found it inspiring! Where do you want to travel to? How can I help you?

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! Keep moving forward. Many wonderful adventures await you!

  • Reply

    aventuraspelomundo

    April 11, 2012

    Muito legal teu blog

  • Reply

    Esi

    April 11, 2012

    I loved reading through this. It’s absolutely inspiring! It also reminded of a post I wrote while travelling to explain why a person chooses to be a nomad. Check it out:

    http://erumsiddiqui.wordpress.com/2012/04/06/travelocity/

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey Esi!

      Thanks so much for sharing! I will be sure to check it out!

      Stay inspired! I hope you achieve all that you wish to do!

  • Reply

    Joanna

    April 11, 2012

    Wow all the jobs you’ve done seems like an adventure within itself! I find paying for things with a credit card makes you realize how much money you spend in a month and on what. Boy did that open my eyes when I did that for a month.

    I am planning on traveling this summer and a lot of this will help me prepare for it! Thanks!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hey Joanna!

      Yeah, I’ve had some strange jobs in my lifetime! But always exciting =). Where are you planning on going this summer? Let me know if you have any other questions! I’m happy to answer!

      Be well~

      • Reply

        Joanna

        April 14, 2012

        I’m going to China this summer. We’re going to do one of those tour groups. Not sure where yet but I will let you know when I find out!

  • Reply

    andy1076

    April 11, 2012

    Uhm..dare I ask what Yogi bear wanted to talk about? :P

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hahaha, in all honesty? Poptarts and marshmallows. He was waiting for a treat =)

      • Reply

        andy1076

        April 11, 2012

        First he has to bring you a picnic basket, then maybe just maybe he gets to have poptarts :P

  • Reply

    nestfullofbirds

    April 11, 2012

    LOVE your post. It speaks to the snuffled out adventurer in me. (I’m a Mama to 2 young ones.) Wish I would’ve done more adventure-izin’ before I had kids, but I do love where I am now. I’ll just live vicariously through your blog. ;)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Thank you so much! It sounds like you are on quite the adventure yourself! I have a young niece and boy, is she a spitfire! I have to give props to any mommy out there. One day I hope to have that adventure, but not yet.

      And I’m sure you will have (and do have) many amazing adventures! Please keep in touch and let me know what amazing things come across your path. =)

  • Reply

    zezil

    April 11, 2012

    Wow wow wow wow. I learned a lot from this blog! one more time….WOW! Thank you very much!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Wow, thank you! I am SO happy to hear that you liked it! Please let me know if you have any questions or how I can help you get on your own adventure!

      • Reply

        zezil

        April 11, 2012

        You know, I have always wanted to travel but was always discouraged by a lot of factors—-like money! But thanks to your tips I can now look at travelling in a diff perspective! I hope to visit South Korea someday…or soon.=) And I will pocket the things that you have listed here.=)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 12, 2012

          If you are really interested in going to S. Korea, there are some amazing teaching abroad programs run through there. Let me know and I can put you in touch with some friends that have done it!

          • zezil

            April 12, 2012

            Really? Wow.That’s amazing. If there is a brief stint where I could participate (like Teaching Assistants for 2 weeks, just brief since I have work) I would love to join!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 13, 2012

            Most of the teaching programs (where you get paid and they put you up) are at least 6 month committments. That’s the only reason why I haven’t done it myself yet. I will check around and see what other programs are available, but there are other volunteer programs available (where you pay your own way) that are shorter. It just kind of depends on your budget and your time frame =).

  • Reply

    marissajoand

    April 11, 2012

    Wow, this was really informative. I am constantly trying to figure out the hierarchy in my life with what I love/want more, and traveling is something that I feel like I can’t live without. I will definitely take this to heart–especially the budgeting!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 11, 2012

      Hi Marissa! I am so happy to hear that you found it useful!

      Let me know if there’s anything I can help you with when it comes to getting your travel lifestyle started! I know you will love it!

      • Reply

        Marissa Joan

        April 12, 2012

        Thanks Hilary, I’m going to try traveling to learn about pastry art and illustration I think–I really needed to read something like this to motivate me!

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 15, 2012

          Hi miss Marissa! I am so glad I could help motivate you! Pastry art sounds great… and tasty! Please keep in touch and let me know how things go!

          Let me know if I can provide any more motivation for you. =) Be well~

  • Reply

    travellingswallow

    April 11, 2012

    well said! i never know how to explain this to people

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 13, 2012

      I’m glad it could help!

      Whereabouts in the world are you now? Happy adventuring!

      • Reply

        travellingswallow

        April 15, 2012

        Hey! im sure it will help many people!
        right now im in colorado and will be working in the southwest through the summer..in a very nomadic style :)..then more adventure! how about you?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 16, 2012

          That sounds awesome! What are you doing for work?

          I’m on my way Down Under here in a few days, then on to Fiji.

          Let me know if you make it out to Vegas this summer! I’m happy to play tour guide when I get back, or to give you some tips to exploring the city!

          • travellingswallow

            April 16, 2012

            fiji? cool! what is down under?

            im an archaeologist, so i move around for projects..i’ll definitely let you know if im in vegas..thanks!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 19, 2012

            Wow, that is amazing! My dream career!

            I’m just stopping through Australia on holiday before going to live with this tribe in Fiji. I figured since I’m going all this way already, I might as well see what OZ has to offer. =)

            Looking forward to staying in touch! Happy adventuring!

          • travellingswallow

            April 27, 2012

            Wow! a tribe in fiji?! hope to see photos of that on yur blog, sounds like my kind of thing! Definitely keep in touch and safe travels!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 28, 2012

            Yes, I will be sure to post some! But I ask you to please be patient, as I don’t know what my internet situation is going to be when I get there, so it may be a few weeks before anything goes up.

            And I will! Thank you so much!

          • travellingswallow

            April 27, 2012

            Wow! a tribe in fiji?! hope to see photos of that on your blog, sounds like my kind of thing! Definitely keep in touch and safe travels!

          • Hilary Billings

            April 28, 2012

            Thank you so much! I’ll be sure to stay in touch. Just know that I may not have internet access while I’m in Fiji, so I hope you’ll be patient with me =)

          • travellingswallow

            April 29, 2012

            Oh not a problem, i know how the internet situation goes, besides sometimes its hard to find time to write when you are having so much fun :)

  • Reply

    twoblackdoggies

    April 11, 2012

    Excellent post, your advice confirms what I know I have to do but so far I’m lacking the commitment in terms of giving up some of my daily (and occasionally frivolous) purchases. We’re planning another big trip for 2014 so I shall have to start saving soon :-)

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 13, 2012

      Thank you so much!

      Sometimes the reality check can be the hardest part. My advice is just get out there and start doing. The sooner you can put plans in action, the sooner you will break free from the material.

      Whoohoo 2014! Where are you planning on going?

      • Reply

        twoblackdoggies

        April 14, 2012

        One reality check coming up – reviewing our budget!

        The plan is to go back to Europe and include a few Eastern European destinations in addition to seeing more of Italy, France and Germany. Hopefully we will be travelling for 2-3 months, it is a long way to go for a few weeks :-)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 16, 2012

          Wow! That sounds like such a wonderful trip!

          Please keep me updated on how the budgeting goes! Let me know if you have any questions I can answer!

          Happy adventuring!

  • Reply

    TheDefiningFactor

    April 11, 2012

    I love this! I’m actually trying to do the same thing right now. All I want to do is travel and see the world. I have been to Miami, NYC, and Mexico in the past year and im about to jet set to London! I love this lifestyle and picked it up right after I graduated! KEEP AT IT!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 13, 2012

      Thanks so much! Whoohoo traveling! Sounds like you’ve been to amazing places so far!

      How long are you going to London? I had a blast! Enjoy!

      • Reply

        TheDefiningFactor

        April 13, 2012

        12 Days! Im stoked! any must do’s or advice?

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 16, 2012

          Hmmm… so many must-sees. Tower of London was quite possibly my favorite. Tate Modern is pretty cool if you like modern art. British Museum will take you days, but there’s so much to see! If you get a chance, make it out to Bath and Stonehenge. It’s a day trip but totally worth it.

          Happy adventuring! Please let me know what you think!

          • TheDefiningFactor

            April 19, 2012

            Thanks Man! Im so pumped! Ill have to check it out. See you on the other side!

            -Joe

          • Hilary Billings

            April 21, 2012

            Enjoy! Take lots of pictures! And I better be getting an e-mail when you get back!! =)

  • Reply

    Roshni

    April 11, 2012

    Your post was extremely helpful & informative. Loved it! Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

    • Reply

      Hilary Billings

      April 13, 2012

      Thank you so much! I am so glad you liked it!

      What kinds of adventures do you have?

      • Reply

        Roshni

        April 16, 2012

        My adventures…well, that would include going crazy with friends, trying out new stuff whenever possible, traveling, meeting new people, having crazy, fun times… :)

        • Reply

          Hilary Billings

          April 16, 2012

          That sounds awesome! What new things have you tried recently? What kinds of new things would you like to try?

          • Roshni

            April 16, 2012

            New things like going to new places (be it nearby or a little far off), get new experiences, try new food, so on… :) I just try to do something new. And about what I’d like to try, there’s so much. Bungee jumping is on top of the list, as of now! :)

          • Hilary Billings

            April 16, 2012

            Whoohoo bungee jumping! Enjoy your adventures, and please stay in touch to let me know how they go! =)

  • Reply

    chib3h

    April 11, 2012

    Reblogged this on Scribbles and commented:
    :) maybe when I graduate…