So once we decided that we were going to ‘go for it’, we were faced with the task of informing our families. Now, I have been going on and on and on about an RTW for the past 3 years.
They have all smiled and joined in the conversation over the years- ‘oh, that would be so cool!’, ‘oh, I would totally meet you here/there!’ Then at the end of each conversation, it would never be brought up again.
You start to feel like everyone supports you but deep down they just think it’s a phase and you are just dreaming big ‘today’.
WELL! When the decision was finally made I had no doubt in my mind that they might find us obnoxious and my husband was ready for quite the backlash. So we sat down together and composed the following letter…
What The Letter Said
Hey everyone, Round the World Trip (RTW).
So all of you have heard us talking about it and we feel it is time to share some of the details with you. We have decided to make this dream a reality. We understand that we both have good jobs and that the consensus is that we are crazy for what we are doing! We don’t care!
Life is too short and we refuse to live our lives with regret of what we could have done. Everyone I have talked to about traveling around the world can testament to not regretting it. Compared to the number of people they have met that regret NOT doing it.
The biggest emotion by others, after the dream is realized, is envy. We are tired of envying others and are ready to make our own way.Our plan involves a 12-18 month self tour around the World. Focusing mainly on Australia, Asia, Africa and South America.
With some smaller stops along the way, possibly. Depending on how that all goes, some time will also be spent in Central America and Mexico. We plan to do South America, Central America and Mexico last, so that when we decide we don’t want to come home, we can buy that B&B in Mexico and stay! LOL (Barb & Dave, we weren’t joking last night!!!)
We are in the process of getting the house appraised and listed. If we are able to find a suitable renter before it sells, we may consider keeping it, but we are also thinking we may not want to be tied into returning in a specific amount of time.
It’s a great big World and who knows what we will find along the way. So for now, we are heading down the sales route. Erich/Amanda/Kady… this is your chance to buy our place!! HA!We are a bit undecided about when we will *actually* leave, BUT we have an idea. Since Erich and Alicia are getting married in September, it will not be before October.
It will likely be between October and January. Of course dependant on the house. We have already started to and will be using the coming months to consolidate and liquidate a lot of our possessions and pad our bank accounts.
Don’t worry, we have a well thought out plan, accompanied by many crunched excel spreadsheets.We know it is a lot to take in and you likely think we are nuts but we got this. We have never been more sure about anything in our lives.
Some things will be tough, but we are willing to make those sacrifices for the large return of experiencing the World together. We do ask that you keep these details to yourselves. We have not began the process of telling friends, etc and want to do that on our own accord.
We do not want some people/jobs finding out through word of mouth but when we are ready to tell them, we will. Also, if possible, please avoid emailing us at our work emails regarding this topic only….. you can email us at this email!
Stay tuned!Lina & Dave
Our families weren’t the least bit surprised that they were receiving that letter. They were, however, surprised that we were ACTUALLY going to do it!
After 3 years of across the table conversations and crazy ideas… we were finally doing it. We have been very lucky to have a supportive family and friends!
For those of you that are still in that phase of deciding whether to go or have already made the decision to go but don’t know how to tell your family and friends- my biggest piece of advice is to just be honest and level with them.
You can’t expect everyone to agree with you, but you CAN share your dreams and goals and hopefully, in return, you will be met by support from those you care about.
Note to readers: We departed on our around the world (RTW) trip on February 21, 2014. We traveled full-time, backpacking across 6 continents for the next 2 years. Since 2016, we travel 7-10 months out of every year creating content and telling stories for this website. It’s been a wild ride!
More on Long Term Travel:
- How to Plan A Trip: Step by Step Guide
- How to Plan A Travel Budget
- 11 Easy Tips on How to Find Cheap Accommodation
- 10 Killer Tips on How to Find Cheap Flights
- How to Save Money for Travel: A Step by Step Plan
- Essential Travel Vaccinations Guide: What You Need & Why
- How to Sell Everything to Pursue Long Term Travel
- Giving Up Our Couch to See the World
- 20 Days Till Liftoff: Long Term Travel Preparation Checklist
- Ultimate Long Term Travel RTW Packing List
- Where Will 2 Years of Long Term Travel Take Us?
- Redesigning My Life at 30: Long Term Travel Career Break
- House to Hostel: A Married Couples Perspective
- 6 Month Long Term Travel Recap
- 2014 Travel Review: 1 Year of Full-Time Travel
- 2015 Travel Review: 26 Countries on 4 Continents
- 2 Years of Long Term Travel Down: What’s Next for Divergent Travelers?
- 2016 Travel Review: 16 Countries on 4 Continents
- 2017 Travel Review: 7 States & 7 Countries
- How Traveling the World Changed my Perspective of the USA
- 5 Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprints while Traveling
4 thoughts on “What We Told Our Families before Long Term Travel”
I started travelling RTW when I retired, never quite went to the extreme of selling everything though, I need somewhere to comeback to
I had done all the usual holidays, 2 weeks, 3 weeks there, but it was always in a hotel, with clean sheets, a shower and A/C
We did all the usual places with the kids, Orlando, Disney, we even took them camping, they enjoyed it
Then the kids left home and we travelled further afield, but it was the same thing, 2 weeks in a hotel, we did get out and see things, so I can’t knock it, we had some great times, some of the best times were when we never had a clue where we were going, no maps, no idea, not even a destination
Then I retired and rather than sit at home and watch day time TV, I looked for something to do and somewhere to go
I had travelled while I was in the forces, but they were hardly sightseeing, they never are if you are in Special Forces and I never had to pay for my flights or accommodation, we just went out there, did the job and came back for a debriefing, then wait until the next operation, sometimes I would be gone for weeks or months on end, on one operation, my wife was pregnant, I came back, I had a son who was 16 months old who had never seen me or I him
Now I would be paying for flights, and other forms of transport
I found Oasis Overland, my first foray into overlanding was to be with them, gorillas and game parks, the trip wasn’t too long, more of a taster, well after that I was hooked, I went to Australia with Madadventure, it was an awful trip, we got to Sydney and within 10 minutes everyone had gone, it was the lowest number to reach Sydney, 12 out of 24, but the trip itself was great, it was just the people that weren’t so good, I saw some incredible sights, met some great people on the way, nearly got taken hostage by the Taliban in Pakistan, nearly got mugged in Varanasi, India, had a picnic on the grass with 2 girls in Iran, saw the changing of the guard on the Pakistan? India border, rescued a prostitute in Thailand, took everyone to hospital in Pakistan, because our guide couldn’t be found, changed tyre’s on the truck, because it wasn’t our drivers job, but I would do it all again, just not with the people I was with
Even that didn’t dampen my ideas for seeing the world
I did an India overland with the only Indian owned and run by an Indian for 8 weeks, I never did see a tiger, but it was a good trip, I was the first white person to do this trip with them and I was the only person on the trip
I have done a small part of Sth America (with Oasis)
(Trans Amazon Exploratory (55 Days) Rio to Lima)
I have done (well nearly) the Trans Africa, UK to Cairo, but I got cerebral malaria and my trip was cut short in Ghana (I came home died once in hospital, then died in hospital) my wife was told the mortality of cerebral malaria was 95% and the chance of my surviving were slim, the doctor said if I wasn’t as fit as I was, I would have made it, I was in a coma for over a week and when I did wake up, I never knew who my wife and kids were, I never knew where I was, I didn’t even remember getting the flight home from Ghana, I had worked at Heathrow for 26 years, but never knew where I was, I didn’t even know where I lived, I had to show my passport to the taxi driver
I died the first time at home, the ambulance staff bought me back and took me to hospital, I then died again in hospital, the nurses bought me back this time, I was in IC for over a week, all piped up and connected to machines, it seemed everyone wanted me to recover, I was glad I was in a UK hospital
I eventually came out of the coma and I was under the bed with my consultant and we were going to tunnel or way out (we were on the first floor) the nurses thought it was all very funny and would drop in at all hours for a chat
I still didn’t know who I was who my wife was or my kids, I didn’t even know my name or how I got in the hospital, it was scary
When I came out of hospital, I asked the nurse “what do you say to someone that has saved your life? “
They said “Thank you would be nice”
I did thank them and bought them two huge tins of sweets, but it still seems so inadequate, but as they said “It’s what we do”
Anyway I recovered completely (so I thought) I went home but couldn’t leave home or drive, I had trouble getting up stairs, I lost over 15Kg of body weight, was weak as a kitten, I slept a lot, but in time I went back down the gym, started running and walking again
I never put all the weight back on, but I did get gym fit (which is completely different from being trail fit)
I got a call from Oasis, they told me I had a trip to complete, all I had to do was get myself to Cape Town and I could join a new truck, well it was an offer too good to pass up, I flew out there and completed the Nile Trans, with a completely new group of people, so in a roundabout way I had done the Trans Africa, down the west side and up the east, finishing in Cairo
Oasis have been good for me and I would do every trip again with them and any other exploratory trip they do
I have travelled 174683 kilometres, (or 108542 miles) been to 147 cities in 63 countries, so I think I have done pretty well over the years
My wife wouldn’t travel in the way or style I do, so I travel with passengers on a truck
I have made some great friends on some of these trips, Dave and Lina are just two of them, there are many more
I hope Dave and Lina have as much fun as I have over the years and see many more places and countries, they are a great couple and their sense of adventure is greater than mine
I look forward to meeting and maybe travelling with them again
You have so many amazing stories and we are so glad we’ve gotten to know you and hear some of them! Looking forward to more stories when we come to stay in London. 🙂 Here’s to many more adventures in the years to come my friend.
Hey Guys, Great Post.
Good idea about writing them a letter. I’m kind of in the same situation at the moment. I have talked to my family about it but they think I’m crazy to want to give up my flat and stable job.
But you only live once right.
HAHAHA! Yup, they think we are crazy but now that they realize it is happening, have been more supportive about it. YOLO, for sure!