So, it feels like I am approaching a time when I need to make quite a big decision – Namely, when to quit my job to travel. There are a number of factors behind needing to make a decision, and also that have to be taken into consideration before I do. After all, any decision I make now, could drastically affect my cycling trip around the world for better or for worse. This article then, is as much about getting my own thoughts in order, as it is about letting you know what is going on. Like any good story though, it's probably best to start at the beginning.
When to Quit My Job to travel – A Little Background
I've never led a conventional life. Material possessions have never concerned me, and to say that travel is ingrained in my DNA would be a massive understatement. For over 17 years, I have travelled around the world in different ways and for varying lengths of time. As one trip finished, I began planning the next almost straight away, and from the age of 24, the longest consecutive period of time I have spent back in England has been 1.5 years. Until now. That's because, on returning from my last trip of cycling from Alaska to Argentina, I decided to put a longer term plan in place. This time I would work for longer in order to be able to travel for longer. As far as plans go, it's all worked out pretty well, and my finances are looking quite healthy. There's just one drawback. It feels like I am trapped, and I am not sure exactly when is best to quit my job to travel.
When to Quit My Job to Travel – The Problem
As I write this in November 2014, I have been back in the country for three years and nine months. During this time, I have successfully achieved my ‘savings' target for the next trip. I've done this by working for the same company since I got back, and being part of a Sharesave scheme. On December 1st, I am able to take advantage of that scheme, and by doing so, will have ‘cashed in' so to speak. ‘Where exactly is the problem then Dave?', I hear you ask. The problem lays in that the proposed start date for my next cycling trip is the last week in April, and that I really, really don't like my job anymore! It used to be quite enjoyable once, but unfortunately, it has gotten well beyond that stage now. I've been there too long, and need to get out. The thing is, if I leave too soon, I will start eating into the savings that I have put aside for my trip. Decisions, decisions. So here's my choices on when to quit my job to travel –
When to Quit My Job to Travel – The Choices
Carry on working at the same place until the end of March – This is the logical decision. By carrying on working until the end of March, I have the opportunity to save some more money, which could potentially fund another year of cycling around the world. The drawback to this, is that I am going to hate every minute of it!
Get a job somewhere else and work until the end of March – It's possible to do that, but probably not worth the hassle overall for the remaining few months.
Quit My Job at the end of the year and work on my websites and freelance work until mid-April – This option kind of intrigues me, and it might perhaps be the only chance in my life that I get to try something like this. The aim here, would be to spend 3.5 months working towards trying to establish a supplementary income for when I am travelling. The upside to this, is that should I succeed, I will be able to partially fund my cycling journey around the world as I go, enabling me to travel for longer. The downside, is that if it doesn't work, I would have been spending money for three months without actually travelling, potentially reducing the overall amount of time that I will travel. This is a bit of a gamble, but something that does appeal.
Quit my job at the end of the year, and cycle around Iceland in March before beginning the trip proper – This idea appeals on a number of levels. It would give me two months to work on my websites and freelance writing, whilst at the same time would also provide the chance for a little travel and adventure. The downside, is that it is fricking freezing in Iceland in March!
Quit my job to travel at the end of the year, fly to India, and cycle around India for 3.5 months. – Again, this appeals. I am not sure that I would be able to cycle through India on my proposed bicycle tour around the world, and so it would be nice to spend some time there. Additionally, it is a relatively cheap place to travel around, and I could always take time out when and where needed to develop the websites and freelance write as required. The downside is that I would probably not want to take my main bike, and would need to get one of my others into some sort of bicycle touring condition.
Other options – Some sort of combination of the above. Or something completely crazy!
After reading it through, I have to say that there were a lot of ‘quit my jobs' in there! My main concern in leaving my job, is in ‘wasting' money that I have put aside for my travels. On the other hand, I don't want to continue doing something that is making me miserable either, because what's the point? Of course, I feel privileged that I even have these options, as many people do not. However, these are the choices that face me, as I decide when to quit my job to travel. What would you do if you were in my shoes?