Last year, on November 10th, our flight from Miami to Quito kicked off our trip around the world. Since then, we’ve traveled tens-of-thousands of miles across five continents, seen amazing sites, and met amazing people. One year later, to the day, we’re still going strong. We just arrived in a new city, Thailand’s Chiang Mai, and because of a fantastic coincidence, we happened to arrive during their Festival of Lights (Loi Krathong.) We pretended the whole city was turning out to give us a huge anniversary party!
Originally, our year of travel was supposed to begin on July 1, 2010. We’d budgeted $100/day for the entire year, setting aside a whopping $36,500 for our trip. But we had setbacks and delays in the States which eventually delayed our trip by three months. By the time November 10th rolled around, we had already been gone from home 140 days. Assuming we’d stuck to our travel budget, that was $14,000 already spent. We discussed it and made the tough decision to start again at zero – time-wise and money-wise – when we flew to Ecuador.
We did fairly well in South America (aside from spending too big a chunk on the Galapagos Islands), but Africa pitted our travel budget spreadsheet against us. We regained some ground when we stayed with friends and family in Europe and Russia, saving on housing, but the transportation costs caught us again. By September 12th, we had exhausted the $36,500 we’d set and realized that any remaining travel costs would be coming out of our savings. We had fallen 58 day – almost two months – short of our goal.