Why you should go into debt to travel
Everyone wants to travel the world, but a lot of people think they can’t. One of the biggest excuses for not traveling is not having money. People think they need a huge savings account or a digital nomad job to travel. But that’s not always true. Yes, it does help if you have a massive savings account, a trust fund, or money from your parents. But what if you don’t have any money? Why should you be forced to stay home and give up your dreams of travel just because you’re poor? The answer is you shouldn’t. You should travel anyways. How? You should go into debt to travel.
Why should you go into debt to travel?
Easy. Because it may be the only chance you have. You will never be as young again as you are now. You may never have the same chances as you’re presented now. You may never have the same free time as you have now.
Say you’re just graduating from high school and you’re not sure what you want to do with your life. You can take out a student loan and go to college, spend four years wasting away in some Liberal Arts program, graduate with a shit ton of debt, and still not have any job prospects. You’ll be bored, jobless, unemployable and up to your ears in debt.
Or, you can go into debt now, take out a loan to travel the world, or rack up your credit cards, take a gap year and spend some time finding yourself so when (or if) you eventually go to college, you know what you want to do with your life, can study something you’re passionate about, and come out of college more employable than the next guy, with way more life experience, and with way more stories to tell.
Say you’re graduating from college and have been bitten by the travel bug. You can get an entry level job, one that looks good on paper but depresses the hell out of you, one that pays just enough for you to scrape by, just enough to cover your expenses. You can tell yourself that you’ll travel some day. But you’ll become stuck and your dreams will never come to fruition.
Or, you can go into debt, take some time off after college and really enjoy yourself. So what if you can’t afford it now. You won’t be able to afford it later, even after finding a job. And, with a job you won’t have the time either.
Say you’ve been working for a while and are miserable in your dead-end career. You spend all day kissing your boss’s ass and all night dreaming of quitting and getting away. But all your money goes to bills. You have nothing put away. You can’t even afford a vacation, how could you afford to quit your job to travel?
Or, you can go into debt, tell your boss to fuck off, and take off on an adventure. Your credit card can be paid back but you will never get that time back that you’ve wasted.
So go into debt to travel.
The time in now. You’ll never have enough money to travel. It’s your only option and the right one for you.
Rack up your credit cards to travel.
Credit cards exist for one reason: to give you the life you want but can’t yet afford. You can charge everything when it comes to travel: flights, hotels, hostels, dinners, bar tabs, excursions, surf lessons, scuba training. You name it. Open a few credit cards, as may as it takes to fund your trip. (Bonus points for opening a credit card with points or miles — it’s free money!) Travel for as long as you can on your credit card balance, trying to pay the minimum each month as you go. Worry about the rest later. Or just disappear in a foreign country and never pay it back.
Take out a personal loan to travel.
Taking out a loan to travel the world is a lot more serious than using credit cards. And they are harder to get. But, it’s another option. And loans aren’t that hard to get. Anyone can get one.
With a personal loan you get all the money in one lump sum, have a defined set of terms, and usually have a better interest rate over credit cards. With credit cards you can keep adding to the debt by opening more cards or continuing to charge past your comfort zone. With a personal loan you know up front how much you’re getting and you can choose to blow it all on one fabulous month or spread it out and travel as long as possible.
Trust me, going into debt to travel is WORTH IT.
Whichever path you choose: credit cards or personal loans, be assured that it’s the right choice. Why wait to travel the world? Travel right now by going into debt for travel. It will be the greatest decision you’ve ever made.
Have you ever gone into debt to travel?
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Backpacker in serious debt
Hell yeah. I’ve done it. I’m from India and an avid traveller to boot. Been to more than 30 countries. Right now I’m nearly $50000 in debt with no clear path in how to pay it all back. I’m not a college student but a 35-yr old ex-professional which means it will be very difficult for me to put my life back on track again.
I’ve gone into debt before to finance my previous backpacking trips to Europe, Middle-East and SE Asia. But it never lasted more than two months. I had vowed to myself not to do it again. But, fate had different plans for me.
It all started with a personal tragedy, the loss of my dear mother. She was my life. It was a painful blow which wrecked havoc, a tremendous psychological blow from which I could only recover through extensive travelling.
I was also tired of normal life. I was earning good on a decent job as a marketing manager. But, the mediocrity of daily life and the surroundings of unambitious people felt like a slow death. I was looking for an escape anyway.
So quit my stable job I did. I was already in high debt (around $25,000) so I thought why not swell it up a bit more and backpack till the money runs out. I had hoped maybe I’d come to my senses after a few weeks of travelling. But, no, I’ve been on the road for more than eight months spending most of my time in Bali, Jakarta, Sydney, Melbourne, Bangkok, Mauritius, Hong Kong and Vietnam.
Today the money has run out. My credit cards are maxed out. Now I have no choice but to go back to my shitty little hometown in India. But, I still have two weeks left before my return flight. I will spend it in Bali.
I definitely feel positive enriched by this bold experience (finally gotten over the death of my mother) but being $50000 in debt with zero assets and no optimism is future is the worst way to be a 35 year old single dude.
Most people would consider me the biggest fool of modern times. But, I just happen to be a brazen risk-taker that lost his costly gamble.
Right now I’m typing this from a 5 star hotel bar in Jakarta while enjoying a super expensive red wine I can’t afford.
Will I do this all over again? Like do I even have a fucking choice anymore.
From my extensive travels I have discovered that the whole world is full of shallow people who only respect you as long as you’ve got the dough.
So, maybe any would be backpackers planning to ruin their lives by going into serious debt can read this and calculate their own risks. Extensive travels at a young age definitely help you enjoy a fuller life but are you ready to be in my situation?
I have no regrets for being who I am. Had I not been myself and listened to the calling of my inner soul,I would have ended up broke at 35 anyway.
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