a new perspective on Japan - and surely there are many others!
There was a point at which I wanted to visit ALL THE PLACES, and preferably ASAP. After a year and a half of full-time travel though, I realised that this attitude meant that I ended up going to a lot of places that I wasn't all that much into.

Yes, I think there's no country that I wouldn't visit, given the chance, but when I go to a destination that I have been interested in for years, I end up enjoying it a thousand times more than when I just point the finger at the map/look for convenient flights and go somewhere. This is also especially true for places that people say that you "MUST" visit. For example, I'm just not into the western part of the Mediterranean, and the happiest feeling I'll have during a trip to Spain or Italy will be "meh" - no matter how many millions of people rave about the place. I love Japan but can do without Tokyo or Kyoto, or in general, pretty much every heavily touristed place. Berlin is no exception (I get pretty angry that people mention Berlin whenever I say I'm from German, at this point). This isn't travel snobbery, and I agree that some places are popular for a reason - but they really tend to do not much for me.

Instead of going to as many places as possible, visiting the trendy places, ticking off the sights, in 2013, I am mainly focussing on going back and exploring the places I've already been to more in-depth, or getting to know different parts of a country I fell in love with at a previous visit. I loved going back to Japan and Korea, as well as going back to Morocco. Next year, I hope to return to Japan again, and revisit Vietnam, too (with some new countries in between). 

For the rest of 2013, I'll have another look at the Balkans, but then will try to get to know some parts of Germany I've never been to before. 

 It doesn't have to be an exciting new destination each time - getting to know a place, the culture, the people, the language, can be equally or even more rewarding. 

Which places would you like to visit again, or get to know better?

Wow, it's been over a month since my last post! What happened? Well, I went to Poland, and then... work swallowed me up. Today is my first day off in over a month. And that's good, because in the life of a freelancer, the old adage of "time is money" is more true than anywhere else.

I've planned to write about my trip to Poland, other plans and other places, almost on a daily base, and wondered, how do many people manage to blog almost every day?

Easy: a lot of the digital nomads in the travel blogging world earn at last part of their income via blogging, many most, and many also go on sponsored trips. I'm not saying that this is bad, but it's not for everyone.

I love to write and have been published a couple of times, but learnt early in life that I don't enjoy it as much when it's a "must".

I write this blog because there are places and issues that I am excited about and that I want to share, not to deliver content to a certain target group, amp my readership and get free invitation from hotels.

The good news? You don't have to have the entrepreneurial spirit (or have to use it for travel writing) - there are many many other ways to be more independent and travel lots, or even full time, than with a traditional 9 - 5 job

I do make some money from travel writing and marketing, but mostly this comes from working with certain clients and has more of a marketing background. My background is in event management and marketing, with a healthy dose of cultural journalism and copywriting, plus business translation school. I work freelance with a variety of clients, and mostly, my income comes from business translations and people who want to localise their digital marketing content to German.

Actually, most people who travel lots don't fit into the "travel writer entrepreneur" niche. Here are some other unconventional options from people I've met:

  • Work temporary jobs half the year, or a year, and then travel the other half/the other year. Repeat.
  • Work a job that requires international business travel, try to stay the weekends or take some off your leave after your business trips .
  • Save all your annual leave and then take a chunk of time (1-2 months) off at the end of the year (I know, this is a privilege that only Europeans can avail of)
  • Work in hospitality/restaurants in different countries on temporary contracts (being a chef makes it easier - I actually have 2 close friends who do this, a British-Indian guy and a Japanese girl) - many other professions, especially hospitality and creative ones, also allow for this
  • Freelance and work on the road or from home, in any ratio you like - as a programmer, designer, copywriter, translator or whatever other skill is sought after
  • Work in hostels or volunteer for food and accommodation, combined with any of the above

There are many others options - just like "make money through blogging", "negotiate a sabbatical" is not a practical one for most of us, unless you've worked with the same employer forever and they have a scheme already set in place for this.

Which unconventional career choices do you make to have the time (and money) for travel?

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