When You Should Wait To Travel Long-Term

Patience is not something I’m good at. It was killing me when I had to be patient because I didn’t have enough money to travel yet. I wanted to quit my job, figure out the money situation later, and just travel. Common sense eventually clicked in. If I wanted to travel long-term, I had to be prepared and learn to be patient.

Long-term travel should be considered carefully and responsibly. The better you plan it out, the longer you’ll be out on the road. Once you’re out on the road, you can plan 48 hours in advanced if you like.

Credit Card Debt

Credit card debt is one of the worst kinds of debt you could have.

Pay them all off before you travel. Work longer hours, take a second job, cut out some of the bills, whatever it takes to completely eliminate your credit card debt. Do not use them if you can’t pay it off right away. They will haunt you and it will be even more difficult to pay them off once you’re on the road.

Finishing School

School and travel are two completely different things. They should never be compared nor replaced with each other. Each have their own benefits. If you’re already in school, my advice would be to finish it. If you’re unhappy and want to travel, look into study abroad programs or change your major. We did an episode on School VS Travel saying a lot of things I’m mentioning here. I’ve met many travelers that take a gap-year before starting college. I think that’s a great idea to get travel in right before you leave.

Once you’re done with school, you can travel as long as you like. You’ll realize once you’re done how many more opportunities you have because you finished (like teaching English in Japan). Some countries won’t even give you a work visa unless you have a degree.

School Debt

This is a tough one. Many Americans leave college with a huge debt. Unfortunately, it’s a common problem. Depending on your loan, school loans are among the lowest possible interest you could ever have for a loan. Still, some can be quite high and payments might be due just a few months after finishing. My advice is to pay the loan that has the highest interest and not worry so much about the loans that have very low interest rates.

school debt
Photo by By Nastassia Davis – Flickr Creative Commons

Running Away From Your Problems

If you have personal issues, traveling won’t help you. The problems will always be there and will follow you during your entire journey. Solve them at home.

Not Enough Money

I do not recommend leaving for any country without a significate amount of money. To travel long-term takes preparation. I was really impatient and had the idea of just leaving on little money because I thought I could figure it out on the road, drink water and eat bread the entire time. That’s stupid and unrealistic. Even if you’ve landed a job abroad, you still need money to live the first few weeks before you get paid.

Plan ahead and be smart. While you’re on the road you can take things as they go but don’t do it in the preparation part.

Are there more reasons you can think?

Michael Tieso

Michael Tieso travels around the world writing, photographing, and filming his adventures. He is the Editor-in-chief of Art of Adventuring.

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