Preparing for our #DaddyBloggerWorldTour

A lot of people have been asking us how we prepared for our current #DaddyBloggerWorldTour in which we are traveling through 20 countries with 3 kids under 5 in 1 year. We wrote this blog post to help our readers understand the inner workings of planning a family trip around the world. I am writing this blog post from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. We are currently about half way through our trip having already visited Philippines, Hong Kong, Dubai, South Africa, Argentina, Paraguay, and now Brazil. Next up will be the rest of South and Central America (mostly overland without flying)!

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These are the 3 steps we took before our big Dream Day (Tuesday, Dec 6, 2016 – the day we followed our dreams and left Canada to travel the world). We call it the 3 Ps: PLAN, PREPARE, PRACTICE

1) PLANNING
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Yes, there is a LOT of travel planning involved in leaving your Home Country for 1 year continuously. Luckily, I had done something similar before. I lived in Europe for 1 year, taught English in Japan for 1 year, and studied in Australia for 3 years. Plus, my wife had immigrated from the Philippines to Canada in her twenties. However, this was my first time leaving Canada with my wife and kids for 1 year. My wife and I were definitely nervous. The more you plan and strategize, the less fearful and anxious you become.

Our 4 stages of planning include Save, Sell, Salary, and Sponsors.

a) SAVING

We saved a lot for this round-the-world trip (close to $100K). We invested some of this in mutual funds and an investment property. However, we still need liquid assets since continuous travel is expensive. We allocated a certain percentage of our monthly income solely for this trip. My wife is amazing at budgeting so she keeps Excel Sheets tracking all of our costs and expenses. It meant cutting back on Tim Hortons, not having expensive dinners out, and not buying the latest gadgets. There is an important principle we followed diligently called “The Latte Factor” (it means if you eliminate your $5 cup of coffee daily, in one week you will save $35, in one month $140, in one year $1680. If you drink 2 coffees/day, that is over $3200/year. Over 10 years, that is $32,000). Yes, $32,000 worth of coffee can take you on a LOT of trips. It’s a life-changing saving principle and one I highly recommend you implement it to make your own travel goals come true!

b) SELLING

Before leaving, we did a massive downsize selling a lot of what we owned through Craigslist & Kijiji, Facebook Groups, and Family & Friends. We decided to prioritize life experiences and family memories over materialism. We can always buy more stuff in the future, however, these precious moments with our children will never come back again since they grow up so quickly! We left our most valuable items with my mom in her condo storage unit. The rest of our essentials we fit in 2 suitcases and 1 backpack (yes, that is ALL we travel with…even that feels like too much at times). The #1 rule of traveling is to “TRAVEL LIGHT” (bring twice the money and half the clothes).

c) SALARY

To travel long-term, you need a stable, consistent, and continuous income source. Luckily, my wife is on her Maternity Leave so she is still getting her monthly salary. As for me, I have transitioned my business to be fully online with multiple streams of income including private coaching, affiliate marketing, and selling my own products and services. My Daddy Blogger website also brings in additional income from selling my own products and services, sponsored posts, and affiliate links. We are also launching our brand new online course this June called #DigitalNomadMastery where we teach people how to make money while traveling the world. Stay tuned for an exclusive discount just for our Daddy Blogger readers and supporters.

d) SPONSORSHIP

I first started getting sponsored trips in BC including Harrison Hot Springs, Bowen Island, Sunshine Coast, Okanagan, Vancouver Island, North BC, Chilcotin. Then, I started getting sponsored trips in other provinces including Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. Finally, I was able to get sponsored trips internationally to the US and Asia. It was all because of the social media and digital influence I had built up since launching my Daddy Blogger website on December 1, 2012. Each sponsored trip I did gave me more and more confidence. Now, I know the value I offer and I know a lot of companies have the budget to work with us. This Round-the-World Trip has already bought in thousands of dollars in sponsorship including hotel stays, sightseeings passes, restaurant vouchers, and even transport. In South Africa, we got 80-90% of our hotels sponsored. You can imagine how much we saved not having to pay for our accommodation while traveling. When we don’t get sponsored stays, we use Booking.com and Expedia to book our accommodation.

2) PREPARING
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In terms of preparing, we had to decide what to bring and what to leave as well as where to go and where to leave until next time. So, how did we decide on our route. I personally had been to over 50 countries before we got married so I wanted to visit places I had never been to. So, my wife and I agreed to go to brand new countries that neither of us had ever visited so we could make brand new memories together as a couple and as a family unit. We also decided to avoid expensive countries so we chose not to go to North America, Europe, and Australia (all are expensive areas to visit compares to Asia, Latin America, and Africa). The majority of the trip will be spent exploring South America (Brazil to Argentina in a counter-clockwise loop) and then Central America (Panama to Mexico overland).

3) PRACTICING

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How do you travel around the world with 3 kids under 5?

For us, it took a lot of practice. We knew we would be leaving for this major trip after the birth of Renzo so we practiced the logistics of traveling with kids on long bus trips and road trips. We took a 15 hour return Greyhound Bus Trip to visit my wife’s sister in Calgary. We took a 18 hour ferry trip from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert. Then, we drove all the way from Prince Rupert back to Vancouver (Yes, that is a LONG, LONG drive)! We took every opportunity we could to listen to Travel Podcasts, watch Travel Shows, and read Travel Books. We literally became obsessed with travel to the point we HAD to do it. So, if you are planning your own Round-The-World Trip, I highly recommend practicing as much as possible around your city and province before leaving to go overseas. Each trip will build up your “Travel Confidence Level.”

You can keep planning, keep preparing, and keep practicing. However, there comes a time when you must produce. Simply ACT. Just do it. Go. Leave. Don’t Look Back. No Excuses. No Fears. No Regrets.

For us, that important day is December 6 and we will celebrate this Dream Day annually as a reminder that we chose to follow our dreams no mater what. I have now personally visited 62 countries, drove in 6 continents, worked in 4 countries, and now we are teaching our kids the importance of volunteering while traveling, understanding other cultures, learning new cultures, and being open-minded and responsible global citizens.

Please email me at Ricky@DaddyBlogger.com if you need any help in planning your own Family Adventure. I do private coaching on Travel Preparation, Travel Blogging, and Travel Monetization so please connect with me! 🙂

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