Travel Principles

FRUGAL TRAVEL

Daily Budget: a cushy $10 per day ($3,650 per year)

fru·gal  

/ˈfro͞ogəl/

Adjective
  1. Sparing or economical with regard to money or food.
  2. Simple and plain and costing little: “a frugal meal”.

“Frugal” does not mean “cheap.”  Frugality is about seeking value.  Take a deep breath, step back, and think about the value of a possession, of a meal, of a memory, of an experience.

Let your experiences accumulate above and beyond your possessions.

Frugal travel is deeply important; it teaches you to “let go” of the things you think you need.  It teaches you patience.  It teaches you gratitude.

Frugal travel is an option for everyone.  You do not have to be rich to travel.

You can travel on virtually nothing.  Plenty of people do it.  The truth is, $10/day is an ample budget.

You can travel on virtually nothing. Plenty of people do it. The truth is, $10/day is an ample budget.

TRAVEL ETHICS

  • Do not lie.
  • Repeat: do not lie–especially to gain favor or hospitality.
  • Do not steal.
  • Keep in exchange with others.  Do not exploit anyone’s generosity.
  • Always be prepared to be 100% independent of anyone else for food, shelter, and/or transportation at any time.
  • Remember to say” please” and “thank you.”
  • Be grateful for everything that comes your way: every opportunity, every gift, every trial, every tough situation.  Experience teaches.
Grateful for everything.  Even chairs, which are typically a paid privilege.

Grateful for everything. Even chairs, which are typically a paid privilege.

HOW YOU TRAVEL

You wear a backpack.

You carry everything you need to survive, in any conditions and for all foreseeable occasions.

You walk–a lot.

You hitch hike–a lot.

You surf couches, volunteer your labor in exchange for room and board, talk your way into people’s homes, or simply pitch a tent.

You sleep in a tent often enough, usually en route to new longer-term locations.

You eat a well-balanced diet, no matter what.  Most of your meals are home-made, with the ingredients having been purchased from a supermarket, of gifted to you by others.

You do not carry a phone (they are expensive).  Hence, you always budget your time to ensure punctual arrivals–the way people did before mobile phones.

You do have a small laptop.  While it is not necessary, it is extremely helpful, and safer to travel with one than it is to travel without one.

Walk and carry.

Walk and carry.

There is no downside to having one of these, unless you are wilderness camping for extended periods, during which time you are carrying dead weight.

There is no downside to having one of these, unless you are wilderness camping for extended periods, during which time you are carrying dead weight.

Frugal and healthy.  Regional cuisine is usually offered freely.

Frugal and healthy, when feeding yourself. Regional cuisine is usually offered freely by kind and generous locals.

WHAT YOU HAVE PACKED

*You have not merely packed for a city-to-city tour; you have not merelly packed for working on/in farms, homes, construction sites, kitchen, yoga centers; you have not merely packed for the wilderness; you have not merely packed for partying, for lounging, or for physical exertion in the heat and in the cold.

You have packed for ALL OF THESE THINGS.

**Your bag, without food, weighs 45-50 lbs (21+ kilos) without the additional cumbersome weight of food and water.  Physical fitness is an imperative.  Certain items/categories can easily be downsized (books, tent, camera, laptop, etc.), but you chose not to because you feel comfortable under this weight.

Clothing *Everything fits into two stuff sacks:

2 tank tops

2 t-shits (one cotton, one wool)

2 long sleeves (one zipping synthetic, one wool)

3 pairs of trousers (one of hiking, one for working, one to look presentable)

2 pairs of shorts (one spandex for workouts, one pair for lounging and looking presentable)

1 nice outfit (a skirt and sexy halter top–which doubles as something to wear on laundry day)

5 pairs of underwear (three cotton, two bamboo)

2 pairs of hiking socks (medium weight wool)

2 pair short socks (backup socks, multiple uses)

1 pair of water resistant gloves

2 hats (a winter beanie for warmth, and a Nike runner’s cap for summer and working)

1 bikini

1 lightweight rain shell

1 pair lightweight rain pants

1 pair of water resistant hiking boots

1 pair of flip flops

1 pair of barefoot running shoes

1 quick drying camping towel (doubles as a scarf)

Accommodation

1 two-man tent with footprint (3.5 kilos, but cheap and easy to replace)

1 half-length sleeping mat

1 down sleeping bag (32F/0C)

Easy-to-set-up hiker's dome-tent.

Easy-to-set-up hiker’s dome-tent.

Camping Gear (your travel partner carries the cookware and water purifier, at the moment)

1 MSR Universal Stove

1 one-liter fuel reservoir

1 set of cookware

1 water filter

1 head lamp

1 tactical light

1 compass

3 liters worth of water storage

Assorted food storage containers

Other Gear (your travel partner currently carries the netbook)

1 road map of the continent

1 day pack/running backpack

1 journal

2 paperback books

1 netbook

1 large SLR Camera

1 toilet bag containing:

  • Passport, immunization records, checks
  • Sewing kit
  • Sunglasses
  • Personal effects for appearance and hygiene
  • Extra lighters, batteries, vitamins, data storage, insect repellent, and other odds and ends
This, plus its carrying case, is heavy--but the pictures are well worth it.

This, plus its carrying case, is heavy–but the pictures are well worth it.

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3 Comments

3 thoughts on “Travel Principles

  1. You both are awesome to me. Love, Mom

  2. Pingback: The Biggest Fear: Crisis Of Faith | Life Of Travel - A Memoir

  3. Great post and a very cool blog 🙂

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