veling to four continents, 29 countries and over 75,000 miles while living on $25K a year! Today, one can live and school anywhere in the world and all you need is a laptop (or three in our case). We have found that it is easier, cheaper and more rewarding than most people realize, so we want everyone to know that.
We did not set out to be trail blazers, but we seem to be doing this longer than any other family and we have learned a lot along the way that we are more than happy to share. We did not expect so much interest in our journey, but then we recently read that 70 percent of families would like to do extended world travel. Thus, we realized that we already know a lot of the keys for living that dream and want to support it for others.
We are thrilled that we have inspired others to go for their own journey and see this trend toward digital nomadic living increasing in these turbulent economic times. Families have different needs and concerns than singles or couples do when it comes to a digital nomadic life.
One of our main reasons for our world tour was to educate our child. We have found that there is no better educational opportunity for tomorrow’s global citizen of the 21st century. There are many obvious advantages of life as a field trip and the world as one’s classroom, and we have been astounded by the incredibly beautiful sights and generous, kind people that we have met.
There are also simply amazing educational opportunities online that supports our daughter’s education. Little did we know when we began, but education is going through a major shift now and in our searching for answers, we have met and collaborated with some of the best educational innovators on the planet.
My daughter was five when we began and just turned eight this fall, so she does not spend much time on the laptop yet, but as a digital native, she will be doing more and more of her work there. Even now she takes her piano lessons in Spain via live Skype webcam with a teacher in Chicago.
She loves e-libraries, does some of her home-schooling on the computer, talks to family and friends at home using her webcam, has her own blog, and is taking a course this semester with John Hopkins University’s CTY program online with kids from around the country. She has even been interviewed by school kids in Boston live via Skype webcam calls!
She helps a great deal with the planning of our trip and is a master now at maps plus a multitude of subway and bus routes from cities around the world. It is astonishing that this child who had never taken a bus before we left, is now an expert on travel by freighter ship, train, buses, sailboats, ferries, horses, bikes, hiking, camels and more!
One of the highlights for her when she rode in on a camel into the Sahara in Morocco at the age of six and played a violin concert for 60 Berber children who had never seen a violin and who live without running water.
I never imagined that a middle-aged mom like me with mobility challenges could do a camel trek deep into the Sahara with my family via independent travel, but it turned out to be a great blessing as so much of our trip has been.
If you have ever dreamed about extended travel with your family, I am here to be a witness to let you know that it can be done and extraordinary things can happen to very ordinary people. The hardest part is making that choice, the rest is easy!