As the saying goes, time flies when you’re having fun, but as I’ve come to learn over the past few years, time flies either way, whether you’re having fun or not. That’s pretty much how it goes as far as some of the sub-plots which form part of the past few years we’ve been exploring as much of the world as we can manage to get to. There were indeed some moments in which I wished we could make the time go faster, like when we were stuck on a long layover due to having missed a connecting flight once, but in general time has indeed flown by on account of the fun we’ve been having.
We have no intention of stopping and looking back on the distances we’ve managed to cover so far, the question of just how we manage to sustain travelling long-term inevitably pops up, time and time again. So I thought I’d address it with the most up-to-date information I have at my disposal.
Identifying as a traveller
First and foremost, one must identify as a traveller if you have any hope of ever getting to a stage in your traveller’s life where you can sustain long term travels. Seriously, anyone who is within earshot should be told about your desire to travel and see as much of the world as possible. Eventually you’ll tell the right person, or someone will pass on the message to the right person.
In our situation it was a matter of telling a newly made friend about my desire to travel who happens to work in the airline industry. She worked as what was still referred to as an airhostess a few short years ago, which of cause is an occupation which is known as being cabin crew now. So the deal was simple – people who work for airlines get mega discounts that you won’t believe, so I won’t even get into the exact details, but I got listed as a companion on her discounts and rebates plan, which means that I could then subsequently split the costs with my travel buddy to have us both flying out together.
So you never know who is listening and watching when you tell them about your intentions.
Finding a way to benefit out of each trip
It might seem quite impossible, but that holiday feeling can get old really quickly if you’re not traveling with some other purpose in mind. Finding a way to benefit out of each trip will let you in on some secrets which are the preserve of holidaymakers who want to extend the joys of travel, such as being offered a spot on a travel group that operates a kind of timeshare arrangement. Don’t knock on these things until you have tried them. If you do not, you might end up seeking help from timeshare exit companies or lawyers to get yourself out of such agreements.
So, at the beginning itself, ask the hotel staff if there are any special offers or if they know of anything extra you can come away with from your trip as a way to benefit from each and every trip.
Sharing your travel experiences
For my friend and I we share our travel experiences via this blog and on our social media platforms, which is about more than just bragging about all the lovely places we visit. It goes right back to what you attract with what you put out into the universe. For instance, a newly-minted backpackers’ hostel owner got in touch with us to do a work-away, citing the need to go overseas to look after his sick grandmother for about a year. What that meant was free accommodation for an entire year, which of course was basically just used as our base from which to easily access surrounding areas in that specific destination.
Using flight and accommodation search platforms
Jump online and use those platforms through which you can search for cheaper flights and accommodation, such as JustFly which is emerging as my personal favourite. I particularly like that specific flight and accommodation search platform because of its honest approach to listing prices in that you get to see the final price as is inclusive of the taxes.
I guess it’s no longer a secret by now that this is how you get much cheaper airfare rates than going straight to the airlines’ sites, something which can come in handy when you want to travel long-term. You also get to see how best to connect flights between airlines, which can also come in handy if you perhaps want to stopover and explore some interesting destinations along the way for much longer.
Joining travel industry loyalty rewards programmes
This is perhaps the ultimate secret to sustaining long-term travel. Joining travel industry loyalty and rewards programmes will have you accumulating points which you can redeem for some great travel perks, such as qualifying for drastically reduced or completely waived airfare or cheaper rates at a hotel. You can even get a free night or two, depending on how often you travel and how diligently you use the same platforms to search for flights and accommodation.
Even if you bought your ticket to fly with a specific airline via an online travel agency, you can and should still claim your “miles” with that specific airline.
Otherwise it really helps to be able to redeem loyalty points to the tune of something that will have you staying in someplace like a Southeast Asian hostel for an entire week or two, for free! Every little bit extra that you can get in any way helps in a big way and contributes majorly to sustaining longer-term travels.