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Traveling Debt FI

Why I’m Traveling More (Even Though I Still Have Debt)

August 8, 2018

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I still have debt to pay off and I definitely haven’t forgotten about it. In fact, I’m making extra payments whenever I can to get the last of my (non-mortgage) debt paid off. But I’m not going to let my debt slow me down. I’m going to work hard to pay it off, build my savings, but I’m also going to do more traveling.

Yep, that’s right. Even though I have a lot of financial goals in place regarding paying off debt and building savings, I’m also going to be doing a lot more traveling. Why? I’m glad you asked!

Traveling for Business

I recently had a break-though regarding my business thinking. I have a lot of new goals and ideas and I can’t wait to implement them. They should help me be able to work less and continue to grow my online income.

Part of my business strategy is to spend time collaborating with and learning from other business owners and freelancers. This is also one of the reasons I’m going to be doing more traveling.

Traveling for business is fun and I can’t wait to explore new places and learn and grow my business at the same time.

Traveling for Fun

Although most of my trips these days do have some business aspects involved in them, I’m also going to have some fun while I’m gone.

I like to take combo trips for fun and business because it means that my trips are all at least partially tax deductible. Woohoo!! 🙂

It’s also fun to explore new places and have new adventures.

Traveling for Adventure

I have always loved adventures, and I used to go on a lot of small adventures with my dad when I was a kid. But, I’ve never done much traveling across the country. I’ve also never been outside of the United States.

While I’m not sure traveling abroad is something I’ll accomplish in the super near future, I’m still very excited about the adventures of the cross-country trips I have planned and those to come.

The best part about the trips I have planned is that I shouldn’t see a big drop in income from traveling, and I don’t have to “request off” in advance. I’m very excited that I’ll be able to keep my business running while traveling, although I do plan to work a lot less while I’m gone. 🙂

How to Avoid Letting Debt Hold You Back from Traveling

You shouldn’t let debt hold you back from traveling, but there are a few things to keep in mind if you’re going to travel before you’re debt free.

1. Don’t Add to Your Debt

First and foremost, don’t add to your debt because of your travel plans. Don’t put your travel on a credit card unless you know with 100% certainty that you can pay it off in full.

If there’s any doubt in your mind, don’t put it on credit! It’s ok to pay with your debit card or cash if you don’t trust yourself with credit yet.

2. Start a Travel Fund

Starting a travel fund has been key for me to take more trips without adding to my debt.

I have a dedicated fund specifically for travel savings, which helps me avoid feeling guilty about travel while I’m still in debt too.

Having a dedicated travel fund is smart because then you won’t be tempted to dip into it for anything else either. Plus, if you open a high-yield savings account, you can earn interest to add to your travel fund.

I recommend Synchrony Savings and Barclays. They both have a rate of 1.85% with no minimum balance or monthly service fee.

3. Plan Ahead and Be Frugal

You don’t have to succumb to travel hacking in order to have a frugal vacation. Instead, use a few of these travel tips I shared from a recent trip. They helped me travel for less than $100/day without travel hacking or using credit cards.

My big tip, use alternatives instead of a hotel, like Airbnb!

Do you have any travel planned? Is your debt holding you back from traveling?

It's ok to find a balance between paying off debt and traveling. Here are a few of my tips for how to travel even though you still have debt to pay off.
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13 responses to “Why I’m Traveling More (Even Though I Still Have Debt)

  1. We definitely need to focus more on travel now that a couple of other goals are taken care of. We’ll see how 2016’s budget goes, and then we’ll reassess. Unfortunately, we have limited choice of destinations due to some of my husband’s health issues. But it’d be nice to go back to Seattle with him. Or visit friends in LA. We keep meaning to go there and hit some theme parks.

  2. I’m so jealous you’ll be traveling to visit Cat! Meeting “online friends” in person is so much fun, and it’s better not having to wait until FinCon to do it! Travel wasn’t very important to me a few years ago, but it’s climbed up the ladder since moving away from home, and life is just too short to not see your friends and family because of debt. You’re also going about it in a responsible way – I would never recommend someone go into more debt to travel, of course, but doing it with a plan is key!

    Next year I’m also going to FinCon, I’ll be going to Austin, I’m sure I’ll be going back to NY at some point, and I’d *like* to squeeze in an overseas trip, but we’ll see.

    1. It sounds like you have some fun travel planned too! I want to travel to see more business peeps and entrepreneurs so I can connect and learn from them. Maybe we need to have a meet up sometime! 🙂

  3. That’s so awesome that you’re going to see Cat! Debt has definitely gotten in the way of my travel plans but I will be doing a bit more traveling next year for my honeymoon, a mini-family vacation in the summer and FinCon in the fall.

    1. That sounds fun! If these didn’t count as at least partial work trips, I probably wouldn’t be going on 3 trips in 2016. Travel is fun, but can be expensive!

  4. I think that’s some great advice! Just because you have debt doesn’t mean you can’t use money to enjoy life, you just have to do it wisely.

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