Where are you headed next?

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Before I left Melbourne last August, my eldest sister asked me a question that left me both stumped and surprised: where do I picture myself living in the future? Unlike other 32 year olds who can easily prattle off with a concrete answer, I found myself saying with as much confidence that I can muster that I still can’t look that far ahead. All that I’m seeing, and all that I want to do is to travel, and to continue traveling. It has come to a point that I am moving beyond doing it as a hobby, and wanting to make it my life.

I wouldn’t mind living in this apartment in Mykonos

I have no set destination, I have no idea where I want to end up eventually, but I do know that I will find out by trial and error: going to a new city, getting an apartment there, living there for weeks, months or years. All I know for certain is that travel is what I really want to do.

Of course, figuring out what I want to do is just the first step. What comes after is: how are you going to do it? A weekend trip is one thing, a week-long to a month-long trip is another. Living away from home for an extended period of time? That is a whole different ball game.

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It seems easy enough to do: select a city, buy a ticket, book a cheap hostel room for a week or month, walk around the neighborhood looking for a cheap room for rent, move in, live happily ever after, or at least until your visa runs out. Of course, all of these, costs some money. Depending on how lavishly you want to live, this is going to cost a pretty sum, considering that you’d have to put in a deposit for your apartment, and even more if you have bills and other responsibilities back home.

Living in Chania meant seeing this view everyday. Not bad.

The more important question I’m looking to answer is: how much money do I need to do this, and ensure that I can continue with this kind of lifestyle?

Sunlife Philippines has this dream calculator, that computes how much you need to save for your dream. I gave it a try and was faced with an amount I wasn’t ready for. It was definitely an eye-opener, and instead of losing hope and giving up on my dream, it made me want to do my absolute best to achieve what I’ve been wanting to do for ages.

Time to wake up and make that dream come true!

You see, the thing is, it’s not just my dream that I want to prepare for. It’s for the eventuality of getting old, losing my job, and ending up in the hospital. Morbid, but it’s the harsh reality. Despite my blind optimism for a glamorous life of never-ending travel, there is always those possibilities lurking. Best to be prepared, even if you feel you can deal with them as they come.

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In line with this, I’ve taken to subscribing to blogs about personal finance, along with the travel and recipe blogs that take up 90% of my daily blog reads. Sunlife has brought together some of the best personal finance bloggers, and you can read about their inspirational posts and helpful tips about making the most out of your life, while still saving for the future.

Preparing to live a brighter life

Check out these articles that got struck a chord and had me hooked:

I began reading the Brighter Life website while I was still traveling through Greece, and it helped me a lot when it came to shop during the last couple of days of our trip. There were so many amazing shops and cute things that had me itching to abuse my credit card even more, but I kept on asking myself: how will this affect my (sort-of) long term goals? Is this essential in achieving that?

I have to say, it did work (to an extent). I’m not one hundred percent cured of my impulsiveness, but it was great to find out that I can do something about it. And that is the first step.

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For more tips about personal finances, visit brighterlife.com.ph.

Article by Nina Fuentes

Nina doesn't aim to travel to every country in the world -- she just wants to travel to the places that means the most to her. She started traveling in 2006, and hopes to travel for as long as she can. Her travel blog, Just Wandering won the Best Travel Blog in the 2010 Philippine Blog Awards and in the 2011 Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards.

This Article Has 2 Comments
  1. flipnomad says:

    I’ve been thinking about this as well, having a savings, some forms of financial investments, health cards for my parents etc… I’ve been reading tons of financial blogs lately sobrang dami kong natutunan that could help hopefully cushioned possible financial blows in the future like sudden hospitalization etc…

    • Nina says:

      That’s great, Flip! There’s so many unexpected things that can and WILL happen, it’s best to be prepared. I’m still trying my best at the savings bit, but I’m happy I already made some headway with my insurance!

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