If I had a dollar for how many times I got asked how I afford to travel I could probably fly around the world for free! I get it – travel seems expensive. It doesn’t have to be. I spent a week in Bali and only spent $1,000 including my flight. Want to know my secret for going to Bali on a budget?
If you’ve ever been thrown out of your comfort zone in another country, you know it’s not always an easy experience. When in Bali, we stayed in Ubud but knew we had to make it to the beach at least one day of our trip. The problem? The coast can be over an hour away from our hotel and there was no way we were going to drive that. Luckily, hiring a driver for the day in Bali is not only super easy but very inexpensive in comparison to the US. We hired a driver the morning of for a total of ten hours at only $40.00 for the whole day. Now that we had the driver, where did we end up? The Sundays Beach Club in Uluwatu for an easy beach day in Bali.
By far one of my favorite things we did in Bali was take a cooking class. It really allowed us to speak with Balinese people about their culture, ask questions and experience the class from the chef’s home. Plus, we made some really delicious food. There is not a shortage of cooking classes on the island but we picked Lobong Culinary Experience and I couldn’t recommend it enough.
It would be impossible for me to tell you about my trip to Bali in one blog post. It might even be impossible for me to tell you about my trip to Bali in five blog posts. But Bali was a 2017 goal for me and I want to share it with you – so the first way I’m going to do that is by giving you snapshots from Bali.
You guys, I can’t honestly believe that I have lived the majority of my adult life without TSA PreCheck. Time and time again I ended up in the airport security line envying all of the travelers by passing the long, non PreCheck lines. They’d breeze their way through the checkpoints, shoes and liquids intact. I’d like to refer to my life before TSA PreCheck as the “dark ages” of my life. Now that I have it, I can’t imagine why I didn’t have it before. And so begins the tale of how TSA PreCheck led me to In and Out Burger.
Have you ever just stepped into a new place and immediately you felt at home? That’s how I felt when I got to Seattle and it’s how I felt when I spent a long weekend in Portland. What can I say? The Pacific Northwest was calling, and I had to go!
I was sitting at work one day when I saw a post about really cheap flights to Denver. I went to the Frontier website, typed in Charlotte, just to see what would come up. When I saw that I could fly to Denver and back for only $130, I started texting my friends to see if anyone could go. If you know about my trip, you already know that no one could. It was last minute, I’ll admit, I didn’t expect anyone to be able to. But I was finding it hard to talk myself out of buying this ticket. When else would I be able to fly to Denver for $130? Maybe never! So after an hour or so of debating, I booked a flight for my first solo travel adventure!
Cinque Terre isn’t a hidden gem in Italy anymore. In fact if someone finds out you’re going to Italy, most likely they’ll tell you you HAVE to visit Cinque Terre. It may not be a hidden gem, but it’s still a gem. In fact, it might be the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. The Amalfi Coast in Italy is also beautiful but I think I might just prefer Cinque Terre.
One of the biggest complaints I hear from my friends (and maybe I’ve had this thought before) is that we didn’t learn anything about personal finance in school. I can still recite the quadratic formula but when I graduated college I wasn’t quite sure what a 401k was. Shout out to my 8th grade math teacher, though, that quadratic formula really stuck with me. We get a lot of ridicule about this and though some of it is warranted, the world of personal finance is confusing. Should I be paying down debt? Do I need a savings? What about my student loans? Is your head spinning? Cause mine was! Luckily for you guys, I dug straight into personal finance when I graduated and I’m here with a comprehensive personal finance guide for millenials. Trust me, you need this.
I made a goal at the beginning of the year to make it to Seattle this year. I have always wanted to go and this year I felt drawn to it. Well, I used five of my vacation days in May to go to Hawaii with my BFF and then a considerable amount more during the rest of the summer to attend to some family matters. I really had accepted that it wasn’t going to happen this year. I just kept repeating “it’s not a 2016 goal”. But, when I realized I had TWO vacations days left and a BFF who wanted to visit Seattle just as much as I did, we booked a planet ticket. We left on a Thursday after work, had 3 full days and flew back on a Monday. What a perfect 72 hours in Seattle.