What if you could figure out how to take your family around the world to experience people and culture beyond the basic tourist experience? My new friend Susan Whitehead has spent the last several years traveling the world, even living in foreign countries, with her family of 8. All of this started with a one way ticket to Costa Rica and $3,000 in the bank. Along the way, she’s figured out how to master planes, rentals, and cultures while her family experiences the world that goes much deeper than tourist attractions. You’ll be inspired and learn some tricks of your own from our conversation today.

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Show Highlights

  • How Susan and her family of 7 (before the bonus baby), struggling financially,  started realizing that they could move overseas and live for half the expense of living where they were in Tampa, FL
    • The life-changing moment when her landlord showed up at the door with a peach pie and a bow
    • Selling 15 years worth of possessions in just 3 months of yard sales
    • Taking off to Costa Rica with one-way tickets and $3,000 in the bank
    • Living in Costa Rica for 6 months
    • Living in Mexico for 1 year
    • Her husband working in Afghanistan for 1 year while she had their “bonus baby”
    • Traveling Europe for 3 months traveling around in a purchased old taxi van
    • Her husband taking a job in The United Arab Emirates, living in the UAE with her family for 6 months
  • Each of her children getting to pair down their life keepsakes to one box
  • How pairing down their life possessions to travel the world has freed her family from the grip of material possessions, even after they are back in the United States
  • The benefit of finding houses to rent long term vs. hotel rooms (example – they rented a 3 bedroom home with utilities and internet for $650 per month in Costa Rica
  • Tax benefits of long term travel – The Foreign Income Tax Credit
  • How you can experience world cultures and foods through the deli section of grocery stores for MUCH cheaper than eating out
  • Learning how to pick up side jobs through the internet to help you sustain living overseas (check out www.upwork.com)
  • Getting to have a housekeeper and a groundskeeper in their rental, pay them very well by in-country standards!
  • Being invited to neighbor’s deep family traditions and religious ceremonies
  • Her children’s vastly different perspective on world culture and understanding other religions
  • Seeing OUR culture with fresh eyes
  • The joy of experiencing local church in other cultures
  • Tips for how YOUR family can try extended travel (3-5 weeks of international travel)
    • Get your passports
    • Understand that a round trip ticket is NOT more expensive for longer stays (subscribe to www.pomelotravel.com to have amazing international airline deals sent to your inbox)
    • When you pick your country, find THEIR local “airbnb” and you’ll get much better deal
    • Travel in the offseason to get much better deals
    • Consider house sitting – www.trustedhousesitters.com
    • Shop in local grocery stores, avoid eating out. When you stay in homes, they have kitchens!
    • Let your children pick bucket list items with each of the places you go
When you are at a yard sale and you're dying as your favorite possessions being bargained down from a quarter to ten cents, you realize that you don't own your stuff. Your stuff owns you. Click To Tweet Stepping out on faith does not mean it's going to look anything like you think it will look or have asked it to look. That doesn't mean that God is any less faithful. Click To Tweet One of my favorite family memories is eating french baguettes and feeding the birds in front of the Eiffel Tower. - Susan Whitehead Click To Tweet One of our big goals with family travel was to teach our children to truly love other people. - Susan Whitehead Click To Tweet

Resources Mentioned

http://www.SusanWhitehead.com/travel is a free audio I recorded on how travel can deepen your faith.
http://www.wanderlustfamilies.com is Susan’s personal blog, with lots of great family and travel info.
https://pomelotravel.com is an insanely great email service that sends you cut rate prices on major airlines to routes around the world. Within 1 week of learning about Pomelo from Susan, I saved over $1,500 total off of the plane tickets for our church mission trip group to Spain.
www.upwork.com is a great way to pick up money through side jobs.
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