You might like the idea of an RV holiday for a couple of weeks – but how about living permanently in a van? For Drew and Brittany Neumann the decision to quit their L.A. apartment for a new life on the road was an easy one. Their adventure so far has taken them all over the U.S.A in the last 12 months and with their recent wedding behind them the adventurous couple are now heading for a new van life in the Europe.

We caught up with them in Florida making last minute wedding plans ahead of their next adventure and discovered their lifestyle, how van life has given them freedom without much of the everyday costs of living and how to find great places to camp for little or no money.

You can follow their journey, catch up with their social media channels and find out more about Brittany’s book Heartfully Healed at their website www.mrandmrsadventure.com

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What I learned from Drew and Brittany:

  1. Set your goals before you start. Like Kyle Brady and Olivia Gould these guys set some goals and timeframes around what they wanted which made it easier and clearer to reach their objective.
  2. As Brittany likes to say when one door closes another one opens. Their original plans of teaching English in South East Asia were modified by the opportunity to borrow a family members van and do some touring. A new opportunity was born and vanning became their new preferred alternative.
  3. Putting yourself out there creates chances in so many ways. Their chance meeting with friends of John Lee Dumas led to an invite to an interview on his podcast show, one of the largest on the internet (which will be airing soon) and the opportunity to lift their blog to a whole new level. Their chance meeting with a Canadian musician has led to him joining their wedding to perform a unique twist on their wedding song. These things don’t happen by chance!
  4. Vanning is the ultimate relationship test. It might not suit everybody but can be a great way to find out how your relationship copes with confined spaces.

 

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Living an Expat lifestyle and leaving the 9 to 5 routine doesn’t necessarily meaning not exploring your own country as part of the journey. For Alabama native Kyle Brady and his partner Olivia Gould their old lives left them feeling trapped and not going anywhere. They had a desire to see more of their own country – Olivia hadn’t even seen a mountain prior to going!

The couple started their planning in September 2014 and after 12 months of downsizing and saving up (they set aside $300 per week by, amongst other things, not eating out) they hit the road with their renovated 16 foot RV and haven’t looked back. As Olivia rightly said, “Why live somewhere when you can live everywhere!”

We caught up with them at Slab City California where they detailed the process of their planning and preparation and how their Etsy store is able to provide them with enough income to sustain their monthly journey.

You can follow their blog at www.drivinandvibin.com and check out their Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheWoodenEarth

Olivia and River Rv camping RV

What I learned from Kyle and Olivia’s interview:

  1. Having a vision board (this worked for John and Monika Mundell as well) is a great way to focus on the outcome you want and can be a wonderful reminder when things get tough as to why you are saving money or throwing out that old dress you used to love. It helped having the extra incentive of a free pizza from their friends but is an exercise worth doing yourselves.
  2. You can RV with a dog. Although they are restricted from taking their pet into national parks they can generally find somewhere that will mind him for the day while they head off on a trip
  3. Check out Etsy as an option for funding your new lifestyle. Like Micah and Jenna Kvidt these guys have found the online world can help fund their lifestyle – in fact the $2000 per month they are making will cover their total costs.
  4. If looking to go the Rv route there is a wealth of online information available to help you and Kyle and Olivia have found a supportive network on the road as well. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when others have the answers for you
  5. You can work RVing to your budget. These guys spend mostly on camping and food however there are places you can camp for free and they are self-sufficient with cooking. They can slow the speed of travel to save on gas.
  6. You don’t have to leave the country to enjoy an expat lifestyle. Like Chuck and Lori Ros and Heath Padgett Kyle and Olivia have learned to appreciate what their own country has to offer. Every country is an expat community to somebody!

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Living an expat lifestyle doesn’t always mean having to leave the country (we’ve coined the phrase inpats especially for people who become nomads at home). For Heath Padgett the boredom and long hours of a sales job proved too much. Soon to be married, his fiancée Alyssa and he hit upon the idea of having an extended honeymoon through all 50 States with the mission of doing one days work in a job in each state. They decided they wanted to film a documentary about their journey and before they knew it had a sponsor onboard and were drawing the attention of CNN, Business Insider and Fox News.

12 months on we caught up with Heath to discuss his adventure, their upcoming documentary Hourly America and the myth of work that still pervades much of society – that being busy is the answer to everything.

You can check out Heaths website and the upcoming launch of his documentary at http://www.heathpadgett.com He currently has an Indiegogo compaign underway to launch his Hourly America documentary which you can support here 

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What I learned from talking with Heath:

  1. Firstly if there are young people out there like Heath and Alyssa willing to question the status quo and take a chance on their future then our future is in bright hands. They have a wonderful can-do spirit and attitude that will never leave them wondering how they will get by.
  2. You can create your own opportunities if you’re prepared to think outside the square. These guys have created a sustainable lifestyle opportunity literally from nothing – it wasn’t even their intention but when you’re prepared to be different people will follow you and opportunities will open up. They now have the world at their feet.
  3. We do specialize in looking busy without getting results don’t we? The guilt of work attitude has to change and be replaced with a desire to spend time on something that you are passionate about and leads to results. More work life balance is needed and this won’t happen until more people question the status quo – but it’s beginning to happen.
  4. If you like the idea of being a nomad but don’t want to travel overseas then don’t. Chuck and Lori Ros spend a good part of their year traveling within the US as do other travelers and as Heath details in the interview you can travel around the U.S. almost as affordably in an RV as living in many expat havens. Find what works for you and just do it!

Check out this episode!

There are lots of reasons why people don’t travel; jobs, money, children, health. We’ve managed to make myths of most of them with the interviews we’ve done so far… but the one we hadn’t found an answer to was pets…until now!

Andrew and Alison Cornford Matheson are a Canadian couple who have spent the last 10 years living in Belgium where Andrew had a corporate position. Inspired by friends they decided they needed a life of less stress and more travel – but with two mature cats how would they manage?

The solution for them was long term RV’íng ( motorhomes) which provides them with transport, cheap accommodation and a home for their pets. With estimated costs of around 20000 euros per year (around $US22000) they get to see much of Europe for considerably less than the cost of staying in Belgium or returning to Canada.

We caught up with them both 4 months into the journey where they share the mistakes they made getting started, where you can stay for free and the benefits of traveling slow (plus the fun of two cats in a confined space!). You can follow their journey via their website http://cheeseweb.eu where they have just released their book on how to appreciate food in Belgium http://cheeseweb.eu/foodie-guide-brussels-local-tips-restaurants-shops-hotels-activities/

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What I learned from talking to Andrew and Alison:

  1. Pets don’t have to be a problem. The Cornford Matheson’s discovered a travel plan that worked well for them; they didn’t want to rough it, they still wanted to control costs and they wanted to bring their pets with them. RV’íng in their motorhome was the answer.
  2. Try before you buy. They did jump in to purchasing their RV / motorhome and hitting the road without testing it first. It all worked out well but they would suggest you discover if you really like to RV before making the commitment
  3. You need to be very conscious of space if traveling this way. Not only do you need a home for everything but you need to secure it before moving on! It does make you think seriously about what you do and don’t need and is an enforced form of minimalism that they are both comfortable living with.
  4. They highlighted the benefits of cheap accommodation for RV’ers motorhoming especially in France. Aires are free stopping points for RV campers often in great locations that let you stay a night or two before moving on. France Passion is also a website they and friends of ours have used where you can camp on farms for free in return for checking out the farmers local produce (and hopefully buying). They have enjoyed everything from cheese “farms” to Angora rabbits and even buffalo farms during their stays.

Check out this episode!