100+ Cities & 34 Countries in 8 Years – Why You Don’t Need To Quit Your Job To Travel The World

Don’t Quit Job Travel

So it seems like every other day another person quits their job, sells their stuff and sets off to explore the world. Its the norm, right? What today’s generation aspires to? It’s as if it is the only way to see the world?

Well, not for me. And it doesn’t have to be for you either.

Dont quit job travel

100+ Cities & 34 Countries in 8 Years – Why You Don’t Need To Quit Your Job To Travel The World

Growing up I followed the ‘traditional’ path: after school came college and then university. I started my law degree with every intention of being a barrister. I finished my degree feeling disillusioned with the entire British legal system, and despite bagging a job at a law firm, I had this overwhelming sense there was something more.
There was, and there still is.

Almost by accident I found a 6 month full time contract role in Hospitality Management at Walt Disney World in Florida; following that I went to work in as an Assistant Manager in ski hotel in the French Alps and after being promoted to Hotel Manager I used my job to live and work in 3 different countries across 5 different winter and summer seasons – traveling for up to 6 weeks between hotel roles.

After 4 years of this I decided I no longer wanted to live out of a bag (or two!) and so moved to Australia with the intention of buying a house. I arrived with nothing (I spent my savings in Asia on the way over!) but after finding another job, I worked hard and within a year had enough for a deposit. Once I moved in, I couldn’t understand why I hadn’t done this sooner! I had longed for a base and now had a home to return to at the end of every day and at the end of every adventure. I still have that full time job and travel between 6-10 weeks a year – and love that I don’t have to travel on a shoestring budget!

Since settling in Melbourne I have taken trips throughout Australia, visited the South Island of New Zealand, ticked another SE Asian destination off my list in Bali, been back to the UK and even gotten as far as Morocco in the north of Africa. But this year will see my biggest trip to date: and 11 week and 7 country extravaganza including a 6 week overland safari in Africa. I’ll be going to Turkey, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Mauritius and the UK later this year – all whilst still having a full time job (and a mortgage)!

So you see – you don’t have to quit your job to travel – and whether you try the seasonal full time work, or find that perfect permanent full time job you never want to leave – please know that you don’t have to. You do NOT need to quit your job – or sell all of your stuff – to travel the world! And if anything, the stability and paycheck from your full time job will allow you to pay for travel and experiences that you may struggle to do on a backpacker budget…

…yes there are some amazing people out there who ditch their jobs and travel for years on the equivalent of pennies (Check out my friend Will (aka The Broke Backpacker) who can tell you all about how to be a nomad) – but I’m not one of them! And you don’t have to be either!

Here’s how it went:

In 2008 I left to UK and went to work for Walt Disney World In Florida. My contract lasted 6 months and although the work was full on with little time off – my visa allowed me 31 days at the end of my contract to travel…
…and so after a quick stop to take in a deserted Venice Beach…
…I did. Joining a Trek America I traveled across 14 States in 21 days: California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania & New York
Who doesn’t love a seflie over a cliff?! .. Thank You Horseshoe Bend!
Then I moved to the mountains…
..and learned to rock a beanie & ski goggles! (or I like to think so anyway!)
In the off season I went around the World: First up – Brazil & Chile
— then onto New Zealand & Fiji —
— Before arriving in Australia where I explored Melbourne, Sydney, Byron Bay, Brisbane, Airlie Beach & the Whitsundays..
..& on the way back to the UK I went to Singapore, Malyasia and Thailand.
Then I heard the mountains calling again and I went back to the European Alps, spending 6 months In Courcheval (France)..
..where I used my tips from the season to ski off a cliff! (Read all about That experience here!)
My next adventure was a 5 week tour of Europe visiting Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague, Krawkow, Budapest, Vienna, Florence, Piza, Rome, Bari & Dubrovnik!
I then took on back-to-back seasons, spending summer is Switzerland..
..and winter in Austria..
Before heading to Dubai to start a 9 week trip trough SE Asia to my new MelbouRne home.
I started in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand before crossing in Laos for Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng and Vientiane; then Vietnam starting in Hanoi and Halong Bay, down to Ho Chi Minh via Hue, Hoi An & Nah Trang; moving up to Cambodia for Phnom Penh & Siem Reap before heading back into Thailand for Bangkok, Koh Tao, Koh Phangan, Koh Samui and Phuket..
…Where I kayaked Halong Bay…
..and explored the temples of Angkor..
…and where I (again) managed to find a secluded beach.
All travels to this point were done on a strict budget; But since I acquired a real home and a good paying job, my travel tastes have gone up! I have visited my first infinity pool at the amazing Four Seasons Resort in Bali… (Read: how to spend a travel day like the rich and famous for less than $100!)
..Took a helicopter ride to land on a glacier in Queenstown..
..explored the amazing Great Ocean Road..
..and discovered tropical Far North Queensland (& another secluded beach!)
I have flown from Queenstown to Treble Cone Ski Resort in a private microlight (I felt like a rockstar!!)
And this year it’s only going to get better! I’m going to see Victoria Falls from both the Zimbabwe and Zambian side…
.. will spend 6 weeks on safari..
..before taking a hot air baloon ride over the Cradle of Humankind in Johannesburg…
..and after diving with Great White Sharks in Cape Town I will hopefully see the penguins at South Africa’s Boulder’s Beach..
And to cap off my trip I will reward myself for sleeping in a tent for 6 weeks by booking myself a week in Mauritius in one of the most luxurious resorts I have ever seen – financed by my full time job which can finance all these amazing experiences. So don’t quit your job or sell all of your stuff – live the dream with me and lets show the world the EVERYONE can travel with a full time job!




144 thoughts on “100+ Cities & 34 Countries in 8 Years – Why You Don’t Need To Quit Your Job To Travel The World

  1. Nam says:

    Wow thanks for this post 🙂 I agree that one shouldn’t consider quitting as the only option to travel! You live looks like a dream and kudos for you for going after what you want and congrats on your home in Australia 😉
    Ek now I only wish I am that lucky! Hong Kong has the worst work culture and there is on way on Earth that I can find a good paying job that allows for time off more than 3 weeks per year 😛

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  2. Mel | illumelation says:

    What an inspiring post! I loved the way you laid it all out; it felt like I was travelling with you through your memories. I appreciate your honesty about your time at Disney being a bit full on, and also with your disillusionment at the UK legal system (completely agree). Making opportunities for travel is all about the pain you want to sustain in order to make it happen. Kudos to you for making your dreams come true!

    Mel x

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  3. Joanna says:

    Very nice post and I agree with you, there is no need to quit your job in order to travel. I have been traveling for the past 8 years and seen more than 35 countries too, with a 9-5 job. My longest time traveling continuously was 2 months, and I loved every second of it. Now I run the whole marketing for the company I work for and I still get the chance the travel 4-5 weeks every year.

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  4. Andrea says:

    Wow, yea I had a corporate job for 6 years and managed to squeeze the living shit out of all my time off (no sicks days, used those for travel too haha) but you seem to have gotten the hang of it better than me! What an incredible adventure 😀

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    • Vicki says:

      Yeah being a travel agent probably helps on the travel front! I’m a legal assistant and soon to be lawyer – so it’s a little more tricky but not impossible!

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  5. Danielle Des says:

    I love that you mentioned that having a full-time job allows you to spend more on the experiences you want without having to cut too many corners. You have such exciting travels coming up, looking forward to hearing about your 6 weeks in the Safari.

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  6. Jordan says:

    I’m also a part-time traveller and, while I am very much envious of the full-time travellers I cross paths with, I am just one of those people who requires some level of stability. Love all your photos and, it’s absolutely true that you definitely get to splurge every now and then when you build your career up a little! Glad to know there’s more of us out there in the world!

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  7. Carla Abanes says:

    Awesome post Vicki, though for my case, I plan to quit my desk job in IT because I want to complete the El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. My boss did not approve of me being gone for 90 days to backpacking in Europe. I guess I’ll just have to find another job in the travel industry. I’m scared shit but excited to go backpacking in Spain and France!

    Well, if do know of an opening in which I can use my skill, Im raising my hand! hahahaha.
    Carla Abanes recently posted…The Definitive Guide to Getting to Hakone from TokyoMy Profile

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    • Vicki says:

      Thanks Carla – and you 90 day trip sounds incredible!! Your desk job obviously isn’t suited to your lifestyle (or your boss is a douche!) but there are plenty of workplaces getting on the work/life balance train that I’m sure you’ll find a great job that works for you after your trip! Enjoy every minute of it!

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  8. Wandering Carol says:

    I’ve always thought a job in the hotel industry would be great for people who want to travel the world and you proved it. You’re also obviously a really good employee whatever your job is, or you wouldn’t have been able to progress, do as much as you did and be able to uproot yourself and start over so successfully. You’ve also got the right idea of work travel balance, something I can never manage to do. And wow, do you have some great photos.
    Wandering Carol recently posted…What to do in Lyon – besides eatMy Profile

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  9. Tanj from A Travelogue says:

    Love love this post because I always see quit your job to see the world! For me and my husband, we have been traveling for the past ten years. We have lived at 4 countries across 3 continents. We have been to 65 countries (me) and the husband 51. Work and travel can happen. 🙂

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  10. Brenda Tolentino says:

    Absolutely, there’s no reason to quit a job you like to travel. It’s great that you are allotted enough holiday time from your work to travel. Unfortunately, many people do have money BUT not enough time with just 2 weeks vacations a year, like us Americans. This really needs to change to give workers more time to travel and regroup and be more productive. Fantastic to follow your journey!

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  11. Angela says:

    My husband and I have been debating this very topic for the last few years. He would love to be a nomad and own nothing but what we are carrying and I’m just not ready to give up my nest yet. We will try it soon, but I still have my reservations. Loved looking through your pictures and hearing about your adventures!
    Angela recently posted…Schnebly Redland’s Winery & BreweryMy Profile

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  12. Kathrin says:

    Wow, you’ve been to some amazing places (some of those are on my list too). I’m still a student and looking forward to get my first job and save up some money to travel. I’ve been traveling on a budget so far. I’m not really the luxury-hotel-type person anyway, but it’s still great to have some more money and not having to worry about it all the time. I definitely think it’s possible to integrate travel in the day-to-day/working life 🙂
    Kathrin recently posted…Hannah in Sevilla in Andalucía, SpainMy Profile

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  13. Fiona Maclean says:

    I’ve done things the other way round to you – I DID travel in my 20s and 30s but it was mostly connected with work and so what I saw of new places was confined to the weekends. Now though, I’m mortgage free and still have my base – and yes, I am definitely travelling more AND keeping my base. I think some of us prefer the comfort of knowing there’s a home to go to, and I am definitely in that category.

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  14. Curious Claire says:

    I love this post. I agree there’s too many posts about how we should quit our jobs to travel even though it’s not for everyone.
    I waited 5 years before quitting my job to travel and while I’m having an amazing time, I’m planning on going back to work when I return in June but on a freelance basis so I have more freedom to travel.
    It’s all about finding what works for us. Great post 🙂
    Curious Claire recently posted…7 Reasons You Should be on SnapchatMy Profile

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  15. Grey World Nomads says:

    What an amazing amount of travels and great pictures! We only started off three years ago to travel the World and didn’t make it to so many countries. Also we don’t have a home base like you do. Our traveling Beagle keeps us a bit restricted as we don’t want him to fly to much all over the place. But it’s worth every second we can spend on the road. Enjoy! #WeekendWanderlust

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    • Vicki says:

      I love that you travel with your dog! We have a spoodle and we’re about to leave him for 11 weeks – but I would love to be able to take him with us!

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  16. Naomi says:

    Thanks for sharing! I too wanted to put down some roots and bought a house last year. I also love my job and due to my health, I cannot travel as much as I’d want to. But I cherrish every trip and they are so special to me. Coming home is also very nice. Happy that things worked out for you. Looking forward to read about your travels in Turkey and Africa!

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  17. Laura says:

    It sounds like you’ve had really fun and fulfilling career thus far. We’ve just begun the process of finding jobs Internationally so we can do just that – travel while also having a full time job. It’s so rewarding to get to travel around like that.

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  18. Michelle says:

    I’m trying to make up my mind on this also. My BF and I quit our jobs last year and spent some time traveling around the US, Central America, and Thailand. It made me miss routine. Now, I’m back in the states preparing for another adventure (thru hiking the Appalachian Trail). After that, we’re not sure. We’ve discussed moving back to California and getting jobs again, this time, to save for a house, and adventures around the US.

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  19. Howard | Backroad Planet says:

    It is so fascinating how we travelers find our own ways around the world. What you say is true, Vicki! Quitting the job to travel the world will not and cannot work for everyone. Your life has proven that you can both work and travel simultaneously. As for me, I am glad to be retired from my 35-year career and have the freedom to trot the globe at will. Cheers!
    Howard | Backroad Planet recently posted…Mississippi Backroads Between Natchez & VicksburgMy Profile

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  20. Natalie says:

    I love your pictures. They are awesome! I think you make a great point in this article. There are so many articles that encourage people to travel the world and quit their jobs. I’m a bit like you. I like to have more of a base and sure income coming in (at least until I can build some passive income up). I’ve lived in 6 countries now, and have had a job in each one. It really makes for a great experience too because I’ve been able to dive deep into the cultures where I’m at, and use those countries as a base to travel to other ones. Nice article 🙂

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  21. Tonya says:

    You’ve had an amazing journey Vicki! I agree and like having a home base for the kids to do school and activities. I know we could school on the road, but you can’t get regular dance, voice and soccer! I think we see so many of those “left everything to travel” blogs b/c that’s what we do. But I think our way is more the norm. 😉

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  22. Vicky and Buddy says:

    Thanks for this! Every few months I start thinking that I have to quit my job. That I’ll never really be able to travel and blog unless I just pick up and move to Asia or something. But the truth is, I don’t want to sell my stuff. I like my stuff! And I like having a home base too. I think what I need to do is just find another job that is a little more flexible. Anyways, thanks again for the reminder that I don’t have to quit my job!

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  23. Alina Popescu says:

    Totally agree with you! I used to travel quite a bit when I had a full time job. It was a mix of vacation time and long weekends, but I made it work. I traveled a lot since switching to self employed as well, but it’s a bit different. I have more flexibility when it comes to when I travel, but I find that I take way less vacation time. I travel for 3-4 weeks at once, but I bring my work with me.

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    • Vicki says:

      I think combining work and travel can happen in a number of different ways, but it’s all about what works for you. I just hope you get some days off when you take your work with you – all work and no play is not good!

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      • Alina Popescu says:

        Yup, couldn’t agree with you more. I tried my best to either take full days to just enjoy the travel, or limit my daily work time. it worked for the most part, but sometimes I just couldn’t be bothered to work, to be honest 😀

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        • Vicki says:

          I can totally agree with the not being bothered with work! I completely had one of those days today! But it pays the bills – and the airfare’s – so I’ll just keep going!

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  24. Anda says:

    I love having a home to return to after my travels. I need to belong somewhere, I can’t be a nomad, even though I love to travel a lot. You did a great job saving money for a deposit in just one year. It would have taken much longer in the USA to be able to do that.

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  25. knycx says:

    A great summary of your trip and thanks for sharing, I am a firm believer of work/life balance and travelling is one of the ways to keep us going from one adventure to another. Visiting different places and experience different culture has helped me to appreciate and respect what I have.
    I didn’t quit my job to travel, too. I enjoyed my time planning my trips with my friends and looking forward to the next 🙂

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  26. Dana says:

    You’ve had so many amazing adventures! Congrats on your home! I like having a home base too. Even if it’s renting an apartment long term and traveling from there. Traveling constantly just makes me exhausted.

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  27. anto says:

    Great post! I travel more than 100 days a year and still have a full-time office job, plus I keep my blog running. I admire people who give up their jobs to travel, but I admire those who decide to not do that even more … good luck on your future travels!

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  28. Alana says:

    I did find it necessary to quit my job to travel! 🙂 I worked at one company for eight years and had just 10 vacation days per year. It wasn’t enough time to visit many of the countries I had longed to travel to for so many years.

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  29. Drew says:

    My wife and I have been traveling like you for some time. As expats currently based in London (we’re American) we have traveled to 10-15 countries per year, every year, financed almost entirely by my wife’s job. It’s a great way to see the world and splurge on all kinds of adventures that might not be possible on a shoestring. Now we’re trying to decide what’s next – maybe Asia??? As long as the travel adventures continue, we’ll be happy!

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  30. Suzanne (PhilaTravelGirl) says:

    Great post to show that you can actually enjoy your job and your travels without choosing one over the other. When I lost my job last year and had the opportunity to travel I did it for three months and really enjoyed it but found it hard to be a digital nomad as I wanted to enjoy each place without having to be tied to the laptop. I think the key is having a job that values time off and then finding ways to maximize that time. I’ve traveled to nearly 50 countries solo with a full time job and had the amazing opportunity to spend almost a month on safari which I’m thankful I had a good job to plan out the mix of budget and high end luxury mix for that trip. Happy Travels to you!
    Suzanne (PhilaTravelGirl) recently posted…The 27 day African Safari Itinerary – Botswana, Zimbabwe and South AfricaMy Profile

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  31. Ibazela | Cultural tourism blog says:

    Lovely and inspirational story! I agree with you very much! Moreover, we had a huge discussion about traveling and full-time job with my friends, Polish travel bloggers. And the conclusion was that having a “normal” job is also a good way to get money for our travels (and have some balance). When I do not travel, I write my blog posts and I prepare for the next travel. I always read a lot of book, try to get to know a little bit of language, history and culture. That would not be possible, it I will be only, constantly traveling. Moreover, my job allows me to travel in more comfortable way. Although I still like backpacking, but now I don’t say:” ok, I wish I can enter this museum, but the ticket is too expensive”. I simply go inside. And that’s a luxury a budget traveler without constant income will not have 😉
    Ibazela | Cultural tourism blog recently posted…Jindai Botanical Garden: half-day trip from TokyoMy Profile

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  32. Dan says:

    Thank you for shinning some light on this. I’ve been saying this for so long, and I feel that people see it 1 of two ways… you either go work 9-5 and do the traditional route and only get the 2-3 weeks of vacation a year. Or you sell everything live on the shoestring budget and hope you can make just enough money to get by. There are SOOOO many more ways to be able to travel extensively, you just have to be open to the idea that it is possible, be creative on how to make it happen, and then have the will/bravery to take the first step (yes, it can be a little scary stepping into the unknown). Thanks for sharing your story 🙂
    Dan recently posted…“Never forget your dreams” – The story of Crazy HorseMy Profile

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  33. Mags says:

    I completely agree with your sentiment and where there is a will there’s a way. Unfortunately, it is a bit more difficult for us here in the USA. It’s nearly impossible to find a full time job that will allow much time to travel. I’ve found ways around it, but it’s a delicate balance. I wish jobs here had a more travel friendly attitude towards their employees.
    Mags recently posted…Leaving Room for SerendipityMy Profile

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  34. Jenna says:

    Totally agree with you! Some people think quitting your job and living a nomadic life is the only real way to travel, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all. I don’t have a traditional 9-5 job, both my husband and I are self-employed, but we still have a home base. Our jobs typically revolve around travel, but it’s so nice to have a spot to drop your bags and refresh between trips! And I did travel plenty too back in the day when I was at a 9-5 job, so I agree–it can be done! Looks like you’ve had so many great adventures over the years!

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  35. Dariece says:

    Love love love this post! What an amazing adventure you’re on! You’ve seen and done so much, and you find a way to do it while still working full-time. Such an inspiration to others. But I have to say, that selfie over the cliff almost gave me a heart attack! hahaha.

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    • Vicki says:

      Thank you Darice!! If you were shocked by the selfie over the cliff it’s probably a good thing I didn’t post the pic where I was upside down over the grand canyon! TeeHee 😉

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  36. S says:

    Congrats on your home in Australia! Big goal to achieve with hard work. There are many opportunities to travel fro working to volunteering and anything in between. I think blogs recently promote this idea of quitting your job to travel when you can actually do a bunch of things including your own business while making time to travel.

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  37. Claire says:

    Great post to show another side of travelling! If you don’t mind me asking, how are you able to work and buy a house in Australia as a UK citizen? And what job lets you have so much time off this year? 🙂 (Just asking because I’m really interested!)

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    • Vicki says:

      Thanks Claire!
      My partner is an Aussie – we met in France – and when we moved her I applied for permanent residency.
      Now I work at a law firm and there is a big push for making sure people have a good work/life balance 🙂

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  38. Carol Colborn says:

    What an outstanding summary with awesome pics! I didn’t do both and waited for my retirement at 55! All my travels while at work can not now be called travels. I started living life in different neighborhoods!

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  39. Elizabeth says:

    I would think this is how most people travel. They work full time and travel on their annual leave. I know quite a few teachers that teach for that reason it gives them plenty of time off to travel. You can also find a job that involve a bit of travel, it is a good way to see the world.

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  40. Ashley Hubbard says:

    Very inspiring for those who want to travel but can’t give everything up! I gave everything up a couple years ago but also decided to fall in love before I left and thus ended up coming back. We now own a business together amongst other things that keep us at home but make traveling work as well! Great post!

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  41. Bernard Tan says:

    Thanks for sharing! I totally agree that you dont need to quit your full time job. Travelling to more than 100 cities, over 34 countries is an awesome feat. I totally envy the idea of working at walt disney florida, it is where all the magic happens. There is no excuse for others to say that there isnt enough time!
    Bernard Tan recently posted…The 7 Wonders of SingaporeMy Profile

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  42. RobRob @TravelLatte(.net) says:

    Good post! You’re right, there seems to be this belief that you have to chuck everything to roam the world, which isn’t the right answer for everyone. For me, work actually extended my traveling many years ago. Thankfully, the work-personal balance has shifted, but I still appreciate the chance to travel through work. Again, inspirational post – thanks for sharing!
    RobRob @TravelLatte(.net) recently posted…#Travel140: Know Your Cities, Know Your AirportMy Profile

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  43. Tess Andrade says:

    Totally agree with you — there is really no need to leave a job to travel — i did it eventually as I wanted to travel full-time but many many years prior, I made every effort to travel as much as I could — where there is a will there is a way – always 🙂

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  44. Deb Che says:

    I loved living vicariously through your post so much, I read it over twice! I completely agree with you since I also keep a full-time job and travel part time. Loved how you showcased all the places you’ve been – so inspiring! Happy travels 🙂

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  45. Packing my Suitcase says:

    Heeey Vicky!! I loved your post and discovering your blog on #MondayEscapes!
    What an amazing story you have. I totally agree with you and I actually love having a home to return to after an adventure. I love traveling, but I don’t have to do it full time, I think there is nothing as exciting as planning and getting ready for a new trip! 😀

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  46. Laura @ Grassroots Nomad says:

    Great article! I’ve been travelling for the last year but I’m looking forward to settling in Canada for a few years and exploring from there. You don’t have to live out of a suitcase to see the world, and travelling slowly lets you get to know a place more than just flying through 🙂

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  47. Vyjay says:

    It was fascinating to read about your tryst with travel. It is great to see your passion has taken you across the world and enriched you with amazing experiences. I am sure that there are many more horizons that you will cross in your voyage of life.

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