Start signing up for some loyalty programs – 796 days to go

I have always limited my loyalty program participation to a narrow range of companies. As I continue to research our upcoming trip it makes sense to expand the list of programs that the family is affiliated with. With still over 2 years of time until we travel, some might end up justifying the sign up effort now. When we eventually take off, I can not wait to see what cost offsets these loyalty programs will have helped deliver.

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Time to learn about my camera – 815 days to go

Red Nikon Camera resting on a table

With schools shutdown here in Toronto, I get to spend the majority of my day with my two daughters in tow. Throughout the day I find myself reaching for my phone to take candid photos of them playing around the house. Today I handed the phone to Isabella so she could review the pictures and somehow she ended up changing the settings on my android phone. I have had that phone for over 2 years and I realized I have only ever clicked on the “take picture” button with the camera.

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Homeschooling Research – 817 days to go

One component of our trip that was always going to give me some anxiety was that of schooling our children on the road. I do not believe I would shirk the responsibility but I think I would have had doubts as to if I was doing it the “right way”. It is something completely new to the family and I imagined I was going to have a tough time doing the right research and pulling it altogether. Right now nothing could be further from the truth as I have been inundated with suggestions and resources around teaching children when faced with a prolong absence from the classroom.

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Another source of Funding for the Trip – 832 days to go

Let me call a spade a spade. I have not made any progress on the other elements of the trip planning in the last month. Even my attempts at a blog posts did not make it to fruition. However on the finance side things we have moved things along nicely. We are now about 1/3 of the way towards our goal and we did it just by changing our priorities a little bit. Essentially we decided on another way to allocate money towards the trip.

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Time to learn some languages – 856 days to go

This post might seem early but completing this task will probably take the most time. Since we plan to base ourselves in each country for at least a month, it makes sense to know some language basics before we go.

During my solo backpacking life, I used to ensure I knew the language basics before disembarking. Phrases like hello and goodbye, counting up to 100, the days of the week, directions and how to book a hotel room were something I would normally invest a couple hours learning. Something happened the last few years where this fell by the wayside. I attribute this to staying in western style hotels where English is often enough to get by in that setting. For this upcoming trip I think it is important to get back to our traveling roots and spend the time to engage with locals in their language. The most basic reason is that it really is the polite and respectful thing to do. The benefit for us in the long term is that any language basics we acquire should make each stay a little bit more stress free. We know we will get in some jams. Knowing the language might help us make the right decision at a critical time.

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How to Pay for the Trip – 906 days to go

With the new year upon us I have decided to share the ways we are going to save money for the upcoming trip. We have not yet decided the amount we need yet but we have aligned on where some of the $ will come from. The overall idea is that the trip will be funded through income from different sources and also from us making slight adjustments to our current lifestyle. One final caveat is the dollars will all be after tax dollars *i.e. real money, not paper money”

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Things we already know we will have to sort out – 968 Days to go

A major driving force behind this blog is that it will help us keep track of just all the things we are going to have to do. I imagine we will uncover more things as we get closer to the date. For now we thought it would be fun to document what we think we are getting into. Later on we can laugh about how naive we were. We hope to tackle these elements in future blogs in detail as we work to knock them off our list

  1. Decide the route
  2. Establish a budget
  3. Determine transportation
  4. Align on accommodation & travel style
  5. Figure out home schooling
  6. Save the necessary money
  7. Manage our transition out of the workforce
  8. Assemble the gear
  9. Piece together the required documentation – passports, visas, driver licenses
  10. Ensure the medical necessities are covered – from insurance to vaccinations
  11. Figure out how to put current life “on hold”
  12. Try not to obsess over what we’ll do when we come back
  13. Identify ways to cut costs for the trip

Think of the below as things that are not critical to the trip but are things we are going to plan to pursue. Tackling them should make things more enjoyable.

  1. Get in better physical shape
  2. Learn how to blog
  3. Better understand photography and videography
  4. Improve language skills
  5. Expand our network of friends

Ciao for now

Mike and Paige