The Situation: (no, not in the ‘Jersey Shore guido’ sense)
I currently work at Burger King in Nowheretown, IN for $7.25 an hour, supporting my sister and my nephew. In town job opportunities are non-existent, the only recourse being to move to a bigger city or get a car. Preferably both. With this being my platform, I hope to be able to launch off on a roughly year-long trip from Ireland to Japan (though the times and itinerary are extremely flexible at this point) within six months. Impossible, even for them budget types, you say? I say nay!
To be fair, some of my plans were already thought of before I came to the fabulous notion of traveling. The original plan of getting out of Indiana involved me somehow going back to my home state, California, only to settle in an expensive studio apartment and start equally expensive schooling. I am extremely happy I finally decided to put schooling off in favor of travel.
So the current plan is a bit different, but will require some financial-judo on my part. Thankfully I’m a naturally frugal spender, and in a matter of months I should finally be able to let my money breathe a little when my sister is finally able to support herself. Now, I’m making some assumptions, and whenever I make assumptions the universe likes to topple them, so I’m hoping with all my might, for the sake of my plans, that the well rounded assumption that my sister will support herself by the end of September will hold strong.
The short term plans are to move to a slightly bigger city within commuting distance of my job, and get a second job that pays a little more (I’m looking at you, Petsmart!). I’m also hoping to generate just a tiny amount of income using this blog using my negligible amount of knowledge about computers and that new-fangled device, the Interwebs (but more on that later).
Well, I have many plans that all unite under the flag ‘The Plan’ but we’ll simplify it a bit for this case. By squeezing every drop from my job(s) when I’m no longer paying rent and only spending money on things necessary for the trip (and maybe paying the electricity bill), I should make enough relatively quickly. I’m reluctant to advertize my overall budget for the trip (the first half anyway) because it’s subject to change rather easily, but in terms of traveling around the world, it’s a downright irresponsible amount. Keep in mind I have very few tricks up my sleeves. I have zero flyer miles, I’ve never used a credit card, and grew up thinking credit was the devil, so getting over my fear of debt-inducing spending will be quite a bit of challenge when I finally come to the realities of signing up for one. I have no clue how I’m going to get myself to spend money on it, but all things in due time, I guess.
I also don’t have the option of selling all of my things on ebay and raking in the dough because pretty much the only things I own in this house are my clothes. However, by getting two jobs, I’ll have an income of $1,000 a month at the very least, most likely more than that. I would actually approximate having $1,200, but we’ll assume any extra money goes toward life’s essentials like electricity and food. That’s still $6,000 by the sixth month, and most likely $2,000-3,000 will go toward all the pre-travel things like supplies and the plane ticket and what-not. By now you’ve guessed my approximate budget I’ll be starting off a year long trip around the world with. But fear not, for I have only confidence in my abilities to work in any country along the road, and my adaptability will prove to be the one thing that will eventually see me right back home after it all.
Okay, so my plan is still a little haphazard and all over the place, and I’m hoping I’ll be able to refine and solidify some of the goals by the time I get the second job, but it’s a start, and I’ll remain cheerily optimistic no matter how bleak things seem.