Home Digital Nomad Is the Digital Nomad Lifestyle Right for You?

Is the Digital Nomad Lifestyle Right for You?

written by Sam and Veren September 17, 2020
Is the Digital Nomad Lifestyle Right for You?

If you’re considering full-time travel, there are several crucial factors to consider. While we love our digital nomad life, it’s not a lifestyle for everyone. Digging deep into the pros and cons of the digital nomad lifestyle BEFORE you take the leap could save you a lot of frustration in having to realize these things on the road. If any of these factors seem like a dealbreaker, then maybe full-time travel isn’t right for you. And that’s completely okay! We want to help empower you to make the right travel decisions for you, and that’s what this episode is all about.

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Key Points That You’ll Learn About:

  • Our individual reasons for getting into full-time travel
  • The pros of full-time travel
  • The cons of full-time travel
  • The role of routine in full-time travel
  • How to evaluate the weight of each pro and each con for your personal preferences
  • The importance of expectations and mindset
  • What you need to have in place before starting a life of full-time travel
  • Important guiding questions to ask yourself when considering full-time travel + more!

Links + Resources

Pros and Cons of the Digital Nomad Lifestyle: Full Transcript

Sam: Hi everyone. Welcome back to the podcast. How are you doing Veren?

Veren: I would say today is good. A solid good. A solid good.

Sam: That doesn’t sound…I don’t know. I’m not convinced. 

Veren: Well the other day when I said pretty good, that was a bit cooler weather, which I prefer. So today it’s a bit hotter. More than I prefer. So today it gets knocked down a peg to just good. 

Sam: Wow, who knew you’re such a weatherman? 

Veren: Well, I mean other than the pandemic and not being able to do anything, what else is there to talk about other than the weather? 

Sam: Well, I think there’s a lot to talk about today in this episode. Wouldn’t you say? 

Veren: How could I forget that we were recording an episode on other things to talk about other than the weather?

Sam: Okay, I don’t even know how to respond to that other than let’s just into it. Today, we’re going to talk about full-time travel and if it’s right for you. 

Veren: A lot of people see what we’re doing living a life of full-time travel. As living the dream. So many people say that to us. When we’re traveling more obviously not now but we still have a lot of freedom and flexibility and it’s appealing to a lot of people. 

Sam: which is great! Obviously we have this whole podcast and our blog and our books and everything to help people to live their dream life through full-time house sitting or full-time travel. But often the pros take the glamorous spotlight and people don’t consider the trade-offs a lot of times. 

So today we wanted to talk about whether it’s right for you personally. Because it works for us obviously, but it might not work for everyone. Because on the flip side, we do meet people who are like, “oh that’s great, but I could never do that because I just like having my home and my home place to come back to.” 

And that’s great. Whatever you want to do –  go for it. So, I guess maybe this episode is for people who are not sure potentially. So hopefully we’ll just give you a lot to think about. 

Veren: I think I would also add that it could be for the people who are certain that it’s their dream life but have never tried. Because every time people come up to us and find out what we do and they’re like, “oh my god, what a life that sounds like the dream,” etc. My usual – and it’s become a canned response – is, “yeah it’s got its perks.” And that’s because it’s me being honest without sounding discouraging. I’m not gonna be like, yeah man you got it. It’s absolutely the dream life. Because often when people hear something versus actually doing it are two different sentiments that they’re expressing. 

Pros of the Digital Nomad Lifestyle

Sam: Yeah, very true. So let’s get right into it, which is first we’re gonna share the pros for your consideration. I think a lot of people are already pretty aware of the pros of full-time travel.

Obviously you get to be traveling full-time, so that’s pretty awesome. Seeing new places a lot more frequently, even when slow traveling like we are, you still just see many more different places and experience many other different cultures than if you were living full-time in one place.I think that’s probably the number one reason that draws people to a life of full-time travel. 

Although I think you’re in the exception there Veren, because I don’t think that’s your reasoning for full-time travel. 

Veren: I could care less about traveling to as many places as possible. It’s just not on my list because I don’t even keep a list. There’s no bucket list for me. I like what we do and I like the way we live. But there are really strong motivations behind why we chose to live like this and travel. Like I said, it has its perks, but I didn’t sign up because I thought, “oh my god everyday is gonna be an adventure.” 

Sam: So why did you sign up then, Veren? 

Veren: well that would probably lead to the next pro, don’t you think? Which is saving money. And we want to give a caveat there. It’s not inherently cheaper. It’s about how you go about it and in our case we were full-time traveling via house sitting and that allowed us to not have to maintain a lease anywhere or property or anything like that. 

Now that has its trade offs as well. There are people who might keep property somewhere and maybe rent that out. But that aside, you don’t have to worry about paying rent or a mortgage when you travel full-time via house sitting. 

Sam: Or even in general. I mean, obviously house sitting is so much cheaper than any other accommodation, except maybe like work exchange and couch surfing, which we’ve also done a bit, but not full-time by any means. 

We’re only talking from the perspective of being full-time house sitters, but I’ve also talked to a lot of other nomads who are not full-time house sitters and they still find full-time travel cheaper than living in one place. 

Now that we are in one place for a bit, I can kind of see how stuff just starts to add up when you’re maintaining your own place. If you have a car and you have a mortgage, you have expenses, you’re maybe more liable to go shopping or whatever. Expenses add up. Whereas when people go on a lifetime of full-time travel, they find that they just spend less on those kinds of stuff really because they’re all about experiences and doing that kind of thing. 

But obviously this is gonna vary vastly based on personal preference. You could travel full-time and spend twice as much as when you were living in one place. I think that’s not most people’s experience though. A lot of people travel full-time and they focus on going to inexpensive countries. So they’re not house sitting but they’re paying very little for accommodation. This is why a lot of digital nomads tend to spend a lot of time in southeast Asia, which is very cheap. 

Veren: Yeah I just was gonna point out that it really matters where you are, because I don’t think it would be cheaper to be a full-time digital nomad in the US. Accommodation is always way more expensive than paying rent for a place or else we wouldn’t be all paying rent for a place.

Sam: yeah exactly. We love house sitting because it enables us to live in more expensive countries at a very reduced cost. So we have more money to spend on things like eating out or things like that, which we wouldn’t if we were paying for a place. 

We’ve been house sitting in the US for the past two years pre-pandemic and we’ve stayed in places that would have been way too expensive to pay for, like New York City, Portland, Asheville, North Carolina, even the Virgin Islands which are all pretty expensive places. 

Veren: Also want to point out that we’re from New York City and we’re talking about staying there being too expensive for us. That’s part of the reason we left. But also when we came back to house sit, we weren’t house sitting in locations that we could afford beforehand. So while we weren’t necessarily staying in luxury accommodations in New York City, the locations that we were staying at and the quality of the home there were definitely beyond our pay grade. 

Sam: Oh yeah way beyond. But yeah, so saving money is definitely a large draw for people as well. 

Veren: I would also add that it can’t just be a love of saving money. It’s about what that enables you to do. For us, it enabled us to take on some risks that would normally be a lot more costly and one of them being starting our own business. So that played a huge part and that motivated me, because I thought hey, if this is a route we can take to eventually becoming more financially independent, then yes that matters to me. 

I’m not gonna just do this as a living because I like saving money. I feel like some people are motivated to save money, but it needs to lead to something. Saving money needs to enable you to do something, because if it’s just saving money for money’s sake, I mean, that’s already an American pastime. It needs to be more than that. 

Sam: Yeah. So many digital nomads are drawn to the lifestyle because of flexibility and the independence that it offers you, not being tied into a year lease or a 30-year mortgage or whatever. So you have a lot more flexibility and freedom with your finances and a lot of digital nomads find that they have a lot more flexibility and freedom with their time as well. 

So like Veren said, this is how we were able to start our business, Alternative Travelers. We absolutely never would have been able to start this passion project without house sitting, without traveling full-time in a slow manner, We were not moving somewhere every couple weeks because that would be really disruptive to getting anything done.  But yeah, we never would have started any of this if we were living in one place, just always concerned about making rent in New York.

A lot of digital nomads like going to new places and meeting new people because there’s a lot of inspiration to be found out there when you’re stimulated with new sites or new people or new cultures, that just get you thinking about things. So, I found this to be the case when we lived in Madrid, so many people, so many expats starting their own things and so many nomads as well. So yeah, that’s a definite definite big draw. 

So I’m sure there are plenty of other pros, but those were the big ones for us and a lot of nomads that we’ve spoken to: a desire to see the world, a desire to save money, a desire to be more free and independent with their time and finances, and a desire to just break free from the classic nine to five. If you’ve been on that treadmill for a really long time, maybe you’re just feeling really tired of it or you just need a break and want to try something new.  

I would suggest everyone listening to this podcast, you don’t even necessarily need to think of full-time travel as a forever thing. You could potentially do it for a year, a few months, try it out and see how it goes. 

Some people do it that way where they just need a break, they just need to shake things up to find themselves quote-unquote or whatever. Often it leads to more full-time travel, but not necessarily. Sso yeah, I think those are all the pros for us. 

What are some cons? Let’s get into the cons here. So I  know this is a big one for you Veren. Which is that it is difficult to create and maintain a routine.

Cons of the Digital Nomad Lifestyle

Veren:  Yes, this is absolutely true. I want to give a disclaimer: it doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It just means that it’s more of a challenge when you’re moving from place to place. Having a routine is really key to maintaining your sense of self, your mental physical and emotional health etc. I’ll talk about that more later but just know that it can be really really difficult, and it might be too difficult for some. If they can’t bring a little bit of routine with them to wherever they go, they’re going to suffer and it’s going to make them feel like this isn’t for them. 

So that’s a very real possibility that you need to consider as a potential drawback to a digital nomad full-time travel lifestyle.

Sam:  So I’m gonna play devil’s advocate here, because I know people might be thinking, “Why do I need routine? I want to travel full-time. I am not into routines. So…why is routine so important do you think?  Why is that a con? 

I know a lot of people are attracted to the digital nomad life because you don’t have to have that routine of waking up at six, commuting an hour to work, working nine to five, coming back home making your dinner, falling asleep and doing it all over again. I think people have an idea that routine is inherently boring and is inherently bad. So why are we talking about this in the cons? Because some people might think that it’s a pro. 

Veren: Often, when we’re very much embedded in routines, we take for granted the positives of that routine until they’re gone. If you eat a very regimented diet, even if you don’t think that you do, but if you tend to eat a lot of the same foods, you might find that when you’re traveling it’s a lot harder to find those foods. So now you get to try new foods, but you might be really missing certain comforts that you had before. 

Or if you have any kind of exercise routine that requires certain kinds of equipment.  Whether it’s a gym or equipment that you have at home, those are going to be a lot harder to travel with or might not be an option whatsoever. There’s a lot of things that we do that we just take for granted. 

Feeling tired of routine doesn’t necessarily mean that routine is bad. So this gets a little more philosophical. I like to argue that humans are a combination of something that follows the spectrum, with routine on one end and complete spontaneity on the other. 

And we have to manage our balance between the two. You can’t really live on either end. If you don’t live in any kind of routine and you’re always just following where your heart goes and you need to be spontaneous all the time, you’re gonna struggle with things like responsibility, accountability, and relationships. Now, but if you do too much routine, then your life’s gonna feel very boring and you’re gonna start to wonder why you’re doing this. So you can definitely have extremes, that’s for sure. 

But that doesn’t mean that you can live a fruitful life without routine. Anybody who is trying to think about living life better or is concerned with wellness – look at any popular people that maybe you follow – they absolutely on some level have routines. So if you’re gonna be traveling full-time, you’re gonna need to think about: can I take that routine with me? If I can’t, do I have the flexibility to recreate and redefine my routines. 

Sam: Yeah, it’s definitely always been a work in progress and I have to say that you’re always the one that pushes for building healthy routines. We did a whole podcast on our healthy habits as full-time travelers which might be of interest. So go check that one out and I’ll also link that in the show notes. 

Like Veren said, anyone who’s thinking about personal development and all that kind of stuff, really stresses the importance of routine. It helps you live life on your terms and achieve the goals that you want to achieve in whatever arena that is, whether it’s the creative space, whether it’s a fitness or food regimen. 

Veren: Even the least habituated person still has habits.  

Sam: Yeah. And achieving any goal comes from incremental change every day. What are you doing on a daily basis to work towards that goal? It’s not like you just wake up one morning and say, “I want to achieve this goal” and it happens in a week. 

We have a lot of our own personal goals. We care a lot about building our business and being able to live a life of full-time travel while financially supporting ourselves with our own creative work. That’s a tall order, to make a living off of writing, podcasting, blogging, all this kind of stuff It’s not exactly a traditional route. Routines just help us to do everything that we want to do.  

I have been historically more on the side of thinking that routines sound trapping. But I’ve really come around in the past couple years to the importance of routine and how dependable and important it is. It can feel very grounding, especially when you are moving around full-time. But again, if you are moving around full-time, those routines are gonna look a little bit different everywhere that you go. So there’s always kind of an adaptive element to it. 

So it could be a possible con, because you have to always be adapting to the new place that you’re in.  Which kind of ties into another con which is the inherent unpredictability of a life of full-time travel. I know this is something that you also think a lot about, Veren. 

Veren: I absolutely do. So the only thing certain in life is that life is uncertain. 

Sam: Could you elaborate a little more on that? 

Veren: Well often. In life we confuse what I believe is possibility with probability. Now, I’ll just give an example. You work and let’s say you work a nine to five job. 

It’s possible you’ll lose your job tomorrow, however, it’s highly unlikely but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen. So a lot of times people prefer the routine because they think it’s safer. But honestly that’s more an illusion than anything. I mean, you can understand the likelihood that you will lose your job, but you still could lose your job. 

So there is a certain level of uncertainty that you need to become comfortable with if you have a job where you take on most of the risk. I would say that being freelancer, yes, it can be riskier, but then there’s also trade-offs that are there in your favor. If you lose a client you can very easily get another client. 

So if you work for a big corporation that has to deal with the ups and downs of things, maybe they can handle those kinds of changes. For the most part, it won’t affect you. But it absolutely can. So this can be a real con for people. 

A lot of things can go wrong and that extra level of uncertainty can definitely make you feel less grounded. 

You might start to really crave some kind of sense of certainty. I would challenge that again, nothing is certain. So a lot of times what we sign up for is just something that gives us a higher statistical probability of occurring or not occurring. 

Sam: Yeah, so when traveling full-time you do need to be tolerant of some level of unpredictability or things. Happening that are out of your control when you’re traveling things can happen that are out of control. It’s pretty much a given. But it also doesn’t have to be like things are constantly unstable. We were house sitting full-time and we’d never had a cancellation until the pandemic. 

So it was once we agreed to a house in the past we could reasonably assume that it was gonna go forward, barring any completely unforeseen circumstances. Obviously pandemics are unforeseen circumstances. Well, I guess there were certain people that definitely did see them coming and unfortunately they weren’t listened to, but that’s a side note. 

So that’s a potential con. Just having to deal with that and manage that. And last con and a major one is community. Interpersonal relationships, having homesickness, missing your family and friends wherever they are if you’re traveling full-time, you might make time to go see your loved ones, but you won’t be living there full-time. 

So you could miss important events like weddings, funerals, babies being born, relatives, all that kind of stuff are things that you might miss out on as a full-time traveler. 

Veren: Some of those I wouldn’t mind missing out on but that’s just me. 

Sam: Yeah, you just want to miss out on everything. I think this is actually a pro for you, Veren. In some ways, you could argue that for sure. But it’s definitely something that we’ve thought a lot about and was a major reason for us returning to the US after we lived in Spain for a couple years was even though Spain is not like that far from New York it’s a seven-hour flight. 

We weren’t bouncing back there every month. I know some people do, but that wasn’t what we wanted to do. We wanted to be in the place where we were. So we had only gone to see our family once a year or so. We wanted to just spend more time back in the US and that’s why we decided to full-time travel in the US starting in 2018. 

And it was starting with a friend’s wedding, actually your friend’s wedding, Veren. So you say that now that there’s some things you’d like to avoid but….

Veren: Yeah, but I didn’t want to miss that wedding. That wedding was awesome. 

Sam: Yeah, it was great, vegan cake and all. 

Veren: Yes, the bride was vegan so I was like, great. I’m not gonna be sitting there watching people eat sirloin steak and racks of lamb. 

This con also depends on what your finances are. If we could afford to travel to see your family a bit more often or maybe spend part of the year living in a certain place, like if you are able to own some properties somewhere. 

I mean, there’s lots of ways that you can help balance this out. But considering our circumstances and where we’re coming from, we did not have the money to just on short notice grab a flight somewhere. Nor would we necessarily want to fly that much but you just have more options when you have more money. 

So given our circumstances this is definitely something that we’ve come up against which is having a very limited amount of time with friends and family from back home. 

Sam:  Yeah but even so we’ve made a concerted effort, like I said in the past couple years, to spend more time around friends and family. People will come out and visit us wherever we are in the US, which is really cool. 

Actually this is a big reason why so many people go to Southeast Asia. Because it’s so cheap and there are digital nomad hotspots there like Chiang Mai or Bali with co-working spaces, smoothie bowls, living the life, whatever. To be honest that just hasn’t really appealed to us for a number of reasons, but one of them is definitely that it’s very far. 

I’m not saying that we’ll never go to Asia, we really want to go particularly to Japan, Taiwan, Korea. But I never wanted to be a digital nomad spending several years traveling in Southeast Asia because it is very far flung from our friends and family on the east coast of the US. 

Obviously you can fly back,  but like Veren said, that’s dependent on your finances. That’s expensive. Also, it’s just a long flight and that’s a pain in the ass. I am not trying to take long flights all the time for a number of reasons. They are bad for the environment.  But yeah. That’s definitely played a part in where we have traveled which has mainly been Europe and the US. And it’s because we wanted to kind of stay a bit closer to home because we care about seeing our friends and family and our loved ones. 

We love meeting people on the road and making new friends. It’s been great, but at the same time you can’t replace friends that you’ve had in your life for 10-15 years. So anyway, that’s that’s a definite big con for most digital nomads. I would say obviously this is dependent on your circumstances. If you don’t have good family relationships, maybe you’re like, “Peace me the fuck out of here.” And that’s totally understandable as well.

Weighing the Pros and Cons of the Digital Nomad Lifestyle

So we talked about the pros, we talked about the cons. But how do you determine if long-term travel is something that’ll work for you? Because a pro for someone could be a con for another and vice versa. These are our pros and cons and most people’s pros and cons, I would say.  So how would someone start going about thinking about this? 

Veren: Honestly, one of the most practical ways is to ask yourself questions, which we will go into. But also, write down a pros and cons list. What I like to do is I have a con that is more heavily weighted than other cons, maybe give it an underline or bold.  

Then you got to also look at anything that’s potentially a deal breaker. This is something that is an approach we’ve used to make a lot of major life decisions in our full-time travel lifestyle. It’s a really simple tool that you can do. 

So we’ll just go through some of the questions that we think you should be asking yourself. We’ll bounce around potential answers and how it can really sound very different per person. 

Sam: Yeah, so I guess it comes down to: are you willing to take the trade offs? How much do you value flexibility of your time? 

So building off of our first pro, which was about money and finances. Do you have the financial backing so to speak? A remote or retirement income to support a full-time travel lifestyle, that’s probably question number one. I would say. 

Veren: Yeah, absolutely. Full-time travel may potentially be cheaper, but it also potentially may not be cheaper. Then you also have to keep in mind, can you still work? So let’s say you had some money. Are you gonna be able to still generate income as you go along or you’re just gonna live off the savings? Is that gonna be a finite end to it? So these are all factors that you got to consider. 

Sam: This ties into having a backup plan and safety net of financial safety net specifically because that’s a definite necessity if you’re going to embark in the life of full-time travel. 

I know people are probably thinking, “oh how much money do I need until I start traveling full-time?” 

That’s a question we get all the time and I’m not gonna throw out a number because it really varies depending on so many things. But I would say, you have at least three to six months of savings set aside, whatever that is for you, in whatever country you plan on traveling in. Look at some living expenses for that area, like we already said, Southeast Asia is very cheap, much cheaper than if you wanted to travel to full-time in Australia or the US or something like that. So regardless of your plans, you need to have three to six months of living expenses. 

I would say now with the pandemic a lot more people are realizing the importance of having that safety net and especially house sitting nomads. Shit happens and stuff gets turned upside down. You need to be prepared to pay for last-minute accommodations and last-minute flights. 

You need to have some kind of financial safety net. Don’t go into this with like, “oh I’ve got a thousand dollars in my back pocket.” That’s just not enough even in the cheapest of places.  So that’s really really important, that’s number one to think about if you’re thinking about full-time travel.

So that might look different for different people. savings, do you have a remote job again do you have retirement income, are you a freelancer or self- employed? where is that income coming from? You need to think about all of those things. 

What is another major component to be evaluating, Veren? 

Veren: I would say your mindset and not just your mindset but how well you can handle unpredictability in your life. How flexible are you really? Because when you decide to live a life of full-time travel, it’s inherently a bit more unpredictable. 

I know I was arguing before that life is uncertain and that’s one of the few things we know for certain. However, when you have more variables at play, there’s more things that are unforeseen that can happen. 

Say you have a team of ten different people who can make split second decisions that affect everyone else, versus if you had a team of five people. Okay, there are just way more variables, it’s just simple math right there. So with that in mind, can you handle a lifestyle where there might be just one thing after another? Where you have a lot less control over external factors. It’s one thing when you are in your home country and something goes wrong in your house and you’re able to speak the language, versus being in a foreign country where you don’t know how the services work and you don’t speak the language, for example. 

I would argue try to be in places where you can speak the language or learn a new language before you go there, but these are not exactly practical immediate solutions. So it’s super important to be honest with yourself about how well you can handle this. Just because you like to have a spontaneous couple week vacation once a year doesn’t mean that that necessarily translates into an ideal lifestyle for you. 

I like to equate it to camping. Camping is fun. And a lot of people like to camp but not a lot of people full-time camp. They like the novelty of camping. It’s fun to do it to escape from modern living and then you go back to something else.

I’m not saying that it can’t be a good thing or something that you like doing, but it’s important to think of that analogy and if you really truly are someone who is adaptable to a kind of constant change.

Sam: Yeah. I think this is so important to be highlighted too. Because I also want to add that this is a definite skill that you get better at. We’ve definitely gotten more adaptable and flexible being nomads for a while. In the beginning, things might seem more stressful, but then you just have to eventually throw up your hands metaphorically. 

Sometimes they’re just nothing you can do about something when you’re traveling. Like Veren said, there’s lots of things that are out of your control. Mindset is really important, being adaptable, being flexible, being able to take whatever comes at you wherever you are and just rolling with it. Full-time travel just comes with so much more stress and anxiety than traveling for a two-week vacation does. 

It’s not full-time vacation, which I think a lot of people don’t realize. That’s another point entirely but I want to say it here if you’re thinking about full-time travel. Don’t think it’s a full-time vacation because when you’re on a vacation you’re going somewhere for a couple weeks and then you get to go back to your cozy house and your own bed. But when you’re a digital nomad, that’s not what’s happening. 

Veren: Yeah reminds me of one of my favorite Flight of the Concord songs where they have a line in there that’s quite literally, “when you’re unemployed there’s no vacation.” So it’s always important to remember that full-time travel is not perpetual vacation just like unemployment is not perpetual vacation. 

Sam: Yeah, I think people have that idea about digital nomads. Maybe we should do a whole episode on busting digital nomad myths. I’m sure we could do that. 

Veren: Yeah, absolutely. This is definitely a big one. 

Sam: People don’t think about the stress and the the emotional toll that things can take on you sometimes when you’re traveling full-time and like sometimes you’re just like, “Fuck, I just want things to chill out. 

It’s obviously still all worth it, which is why we’re doing this in the first place. But we always want to be very candid with everyone listening. Because it’s important to realize and go into things with eyes wide open as opposed to just thinking of all the positives and having rose colored glasses on. Then you get out there and you’re like, “Oh shit. I did not think this through or I did not realize XYZ.”  

Veren: Mindset is really important for sure. 

Yeah and lastly, be reflecting on how important a community is to you. There’s digital nomads of all personality types and all walks of life. Anyone can be a digital nomad, assuming you have all these things we already talked about in place. 

But I do think if you’re thinking of being a solo digital nomad, you can meet people on the road but you’re gonna be spending a lot of time by yourself. So, I would hope that you’re very comfortable with that. Otherwise you’re probably setting yourself up for an unpleasant experience. 

Veren: Yeah, if you were a hardcore extrovert who just constantly needs to be around people, travel can work for you. But I would say you need to be in a situation where you’re retired or you’re generating income and you don’t need to work. So you can just spend all your time working towards being around people all the time. 

And then there’s the travel aspect of full-time travel. The researching, the planning ahead – that has its time and costs as well. Now that being said, it doesn’t mean that we’re able to do this because community isn’t important to us it absolutely is important to us. 

That’s just something that you need to consider. How comfortable are you spending time not around anyone or not having access to your friends and family on the real life personal level that maybe you’re used to? These are real things that you don’t realize until you don’t have them anymore. So we just kind of want to emphasize that. 

Sam: Yeah, also because you might be surrounded by your community and friends and family and you do love spending lots of time with them, but maybe you haven’t had to make new friends in a while and then you realize oh damn making new friends is kind of hard. 

How do you do that on the road? So you’re gonna have to get better at it if you care about spending time in the physical space of another person who you enjoy spending time with. You enjoy spending time with them and you’re traveling full-time. How are you gonna go about doing that? 

So a lot of times we’ll connect with other people on veganism. We go to a lot of vegan meetups or vegan festivals or even I connect with people through Instagram. And then we’ll meet up and stuff like that. It’s really important to connect with people while you’re on the road and then also making sure to keep up with your relationships back home. The great thing is that we’re living in the digital age now. Video calls are just a touch of your smartphone away. 

It’s easier than ever, but it really does take effort. I mean, you’re in a different time zone. You’ve got to schedule things in advance. It’s not as easy as just picking up the phone and knowing that someone will be on the other end. So that’s definitely something to think about as well. 

Veren: It’s a lot. It can be a lot to maintain your current relationships if you want to have them when you get back home and finding new friendships and relationships on the road. Not impossible obviously. This is what we do. But it’s a definite point to think about. How important is that to you? how comfortable are you making new friends? How comfortable are you talking on the phone really? Some people don’t like it. 

Sam: So yeah, a community is a big one to be thinking about and I think that about wraps it up in terms of looking at all these different aspects and trying to determine whether long-term travel is right for you. Veren also mentioned logistics. Are you down for the amount of planning and organization that often goes into full-time travel? There’s a lot that goes into it. 

And we’re gonna cover stuff on future episodes. So if you have questions about any aspect of full-time travel digital nomading house sitting, all that kind of stuff, definitely let us know and we can cover it in a future episode. 

So what are your last closing thoughts, Veren? What do you want people to take away from this when they’re evaluating whether full-time travel is right for them? 

Veren: Just keep in mind that it takes more work but it might ultimately be much more rewarding for some people but again, it’s not for everyone. 

I’m gonna use myself and Sam as personal examples. Embracing this lifestyle addresses two things we wanted to change in our life: how we lived our immediate day-to-day life and how we were building towards our future. And this lifestyle allowed us to address both those things right away. 

Some people don’t mind working really hard for decades to earn a certain type of retirement and if that’s what you want to do with your life and you’re genuinely fulfilled and happy doing that, absolutely stick to that. No one’s saying there’s anything wrong with the living that way. 

I just know that for me personally, that’s not what I wanted to do. So this allowed us to live the life that we wanted. Now, does that mean that our life needs to be constant travel? No. We don’t need to live a life of constant travel, which is why we’re able to adjust things to how we want them which is why we do slow travel, for example. 

Now depending on how you want to do it, things might not look like what we’re doing. We’re not saying that our way is the right way. You’re gonna have a slightly different approach. So just keep that in mind. Think about what you want out of life and if this lifestyle is something that can help you work towards that. 

Sam: Yeah, and that reminds me of the last thing I wanted to mention is we’re traveling together and I think you can tell we each have our own desires for full-time travel and why and we both have different thought processes about it all so if you’re interested in full-time travel and you have a partner. 

Are they interested as well? That’s definitely something to think about. Are you gonna travel together? Are you gonna travel full-time then come back and visit periodically? That’s something to think about as well. I’m sure we’ll have a future episode on traveling as a couple and all that kind of stuff. That’s kind of one of the reasons we wanted to have this podcast in general because we’re both our own very opinionated people. 

So, it’s a good dynamic, but anyway, that’s kind of my last point. Think about how you’re gonna go about it, just start thinking about it. Hopefully this episode gives you some ideas and points you in the right direction. So with that, we will close off and say goodbye! Hope you enjoyed this episode. And we will talk to you next week. 

Veren: Thanks for listening. Talk to you next week. 

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