There has been a flurry of humour pieces that have popped up recently in the travelsphere. The New Yorker published one by Joe Veix. It made me laugh, I would even go so far as to say it was hilarious. Ironically, the subject of article reminded me of something I had wrote a few years ago: Have less. Do more. Be more. For the first time in my smug, travel blogging existence, I felt like a cliché. Maybe I was one of the guys he was making a joke about?
Fear not, I don’t have a trust fund and I’m certainly not into hugging wild animals who are too far up to their paws in a K-hole to not claw my face off. But if you were to call me a ‘wanderslut’, I’d have to agree with you.
I have been travelling here and there since I quit my job in 2014. That’s not because Daddy owns a leather-bound book company or Mum’s a Russian billionaire. My parents are separated, Mum is a primary school teacher and Dad is a project manager. I don’t get handouts and I don’t have any savings. I am a ‘Location Independent Entrepreneur’, ‘Digital Nomad’ or any other buzzwords you can think of for working remotely.
I wanted to talk about this because although some articles narrating the life of the typical rich, upper-middle class white kid who’s ‘finding him or herself’ around the world can be funny, some are not. But if you are one of those kids, go for it! Explore the world, open your eyes and learn from new cultures. There’s plenty of worse things someone could spend their inheritance on. Just maybe leave the tigers alone, yeah?!
This tiger is not happy and it will never like you. Photo via Unsplash.
Those who are not taking a humorous angle on the wanderlust phenomenon are soap-boxing as if to say no, you can’t travel the world unless you have a trust fund. You can’t venture outside of Western society unless you give up comfort in the name of thriftiness and even basic amenities to pursue endless travel in an escape from reality.
I wholeheartedly disagree! Yes, I travel on a budget but not at the cost of my own safety and security. I live comfortably and if not, more so than when 70% of my income was still paying rent in London.
I want to remind those naysayers that it is 2016 and there’s this awesome thing you are using to in order to post your negative articles on called the Internet! There’s bloody myriads of people funding their perpetual working-holidays online.
Ask anyone in the 10,000+ strong community of startups who work remotely and digital nomads at NomadList.com. Or the US Department of Labor who found there’s been a 50% increase in companies that have teams working remotely over the past 5 years! And FlexJobs who saw a 26 percent increase in the number of remote job listings in 2014, over 2013.
My point is, there’s hundreds of opportunities for you to travel while working and it will only continue to get easier as the Internet swallows up what’s left of reality.
Take it from me, a lower-middle class, 22 year-old with no University Degree who founded a remote work, digital marketing company and travel blog two and half years ago and hasn’t stopped to tie my shoelaces since.
Of course, not all jobs require a Wi-Fi connection. You can teach English, become a surf or scuba diving instructor. You can work in hostels, volunteer, work exchange, tour guide, teach yoga, work on cruise ships, even house-sit!