The two of us met on day one of our tech job orientation in May 2016. Chris was walk-n-talking with another fresh face about SCUBA diving experiences. Krista overheard and decided to say hi to these seemingly-adventurous dudes. You’ll come to notice that’s how a good majority of our stories start – a interesting comment sparks curiosity, eliciting a friendly hello and ensuing inquisition.
Since that day, we’ve grown as close as pseudo-siblings while visiting countless locales through work and a burning desire to experience the world. In 2017, Chris relocated to Dubai for a year, driving both of us to up our travel game.
Once the job started to take it’s inevitable toll, we made a pact to some day quit and pursue our shared passion for exploration and propagating fun.
This blog is the chronicle of finally realizing that dream. And hopefully an inspiration for anyone to chase the craziest item on their bucket list.
How we got here
Sleepless nights. Hundreds of flights. Countless hours of research. And bunk beds!
If you want anything bad enough, you’ll make it happen any way you can. Our formula starts with an American staple: busting tail in a high-stress job for five years.
We have travelling 3-4 weeks a month to thank for accruing a stockpile of points and miles across an array of loyalty categories. We’ll use those offset a large percentage of travel costs. In addition to direct earnings, we’ve also garnered hundreds of thousands of bonus points through credit card cycling.
What doesn’t come from points is a combination of frugality and minimalism. I’m not sure how we never got a photo in the queen sized bunk-beds we shared, but there is a photo of the car Krista never replaced after having been totalled by a drunk driver in April 2019. Then there was also the six months of Chris’s Dubai contract where he was homeless by choice.
Cutting out ‘assumed’ costs of living, for a few years is alone responsible for the amount of money we anticipate spending in the first year of vagabonding. Having a solid investment strategy through our financial advisor / certified fiduciary from Creative Planning will make that savings go even further.
All of that in combination with years of living on the road and scouring the internet has made us accidental experts in finding the best deals and points utilization, stretching our resources yet again.
Where we’re going
It’s FINALLY here. Well, kind of.. after the four weddings we have in August/September, we’ll offically be leaving the US in our dust for most of the next year!
Our first leg will be a jaunt around Peru, including hiking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu (obviously), Rainbow Mountain, the desert oasis town of Huacachina, and then exploring the Amazon near Iquitos.
In and around weddings number one & two, it’s off to Latin America – Costa Rica, Panama and Belize – for some diving and other to-be-discovered adventures.
After weddings number three and four, we’ll be exploring the Italian Dolomites and down through the lesser explored Balkan Peninsula before hopping over to the Philippines to complete our divemaster and dive instructor coursework.
And then.. into the unknown!