We often hear how lucky we are to not have to work and to just travel full-time, but the truth is, travel is a lot of work. We started our journey around the world 6 months ago, and we have quickly learned that this isn't going to be all play, no work.
Currently, we are traveling around the United States in a small van that we built to live out of, not in. Most of our nights are spent camping, staying with friends, or in hotels. We usually spend an average of 2-3 nights in most places, with some of our bucket list stops averaging 5-6 nights. This means, that we usually spend a few hours driving to our new location, then we have to set up camp or pack our bags to bring up to the hotel room. We then have time to catch up on our Journals, eat dinner, check in on things back home, and then plan the next couple of days in that location. This means researching our "To Do/To See" lists and coordinating how long each activity takes along with drive time and proximity to other activities. We generally like to be out exploring about 6 hours each day, though many are much longer than that. We also research our followers suggestions and any suggestions we've received from locals, and see if they are a good fit for us. Sometimes we get so many great suggestions that we end up extending our stay. Toni is in charge of looking up the festivals in the area to see if there is anything fun and unusual going on that we may want to add to our agenda. Sometimes the planning can take hours. We also have to consider hours and days places are open, traffic concerns, weather, and other things that may impact our time there. You would be surprised how often major attractions will be closed on Mondays, throwing a wrench into the entire plan! Now that the schedule is complete, we can get some sleep!
The next morning starts with breakfast, and hopefully a workout. With all of the delicious local eats we find, we have to find a good balance, which is a challenge in itself (which is a BLOG for another time)! We then get on the road to go explore for the day. While we are exploring, we are taking hundreds of pictures throughout the day, both for our memories, and to share with our followers. During lunch we usually take a few minutes to post about our day to keep our followers engaged. After dinner, it's back to camp or our room to journal about our day. We both keep separate journals so we can keep our separate perspectives of each stop. I spend about an hour reviewing all of the pictures of the day, making sure they made it to the cloud, and then choosing ones to share with our followers. After that, I respond to our followers comments, and then spend some time supporting some of their pages with likes and comments. I then check my emails, log our financials, and address any concerns with our business back home. Some nights we get to relax a bit before hitting the sack.
Each day is pretty much the same, until we get to our last day at a location. That evening is spent scouring the Internet for our next "home", and the best deal we can find on it. This means searching camping options, Air B&B, hotels, and our latest option, house/pet sitting options. We have to take into location the cost and the location, along with things like parking. When we stay in cities, parking, if not included,can be quite expensive and also can be difficult to find. Many garages don't have the clearance that we need, even for our small van! There are so many little details involved in the logistics of traveling full-time, so much more that we could have imagined. Thankfully we started in the U.S. so we can work out our schedule and figure out all of these little details. Once we start the International part of our trip, I'm sure it will bring many other logistical headaches that we will have to learn to deal with. In the meantime, we are happy with how smooth the trip has been, and how much we have learned about travel.
Our last day at a location means it's time to pack up, break down camp, load the van, and hit the road, starting the whole process over again! We try to schedule "down days" to catch up on our website, write some reviews, BLOG, and business projects, but just like at home, when you take one thing off of the "To Do" list, 3 more things are added. This is one of the reasons that keeping up with our BLOG has been so difficult...we are still working, a lot! Travel is a wonderful experience and we are truly lucky to be in a position to take this adventure, but make no mistake, if you are planning to travel full-time, be prepared to work!