While some people plan to “retire” after decades of hard work at age 65 so they can “live the good life”, a growing number of us like the idea of living the good life now.
This article shows how your mini-retirement can not only save you money, but how you can create a new stream of income that might just turn into the money-making venture of a lifetime.
‘How Can You Afford It?’
How could “retirement” abroad – even semi-permanently – be cheaper than staying home?
People often assume that any kind of travel expense must be incurred in addition to all of the normal expenses of life. So, for them, to take a few months away would be nearly impossible to afford. They are stuck in the mentality that to travel is “expensive”.
Part of the reason for this is lost income. Most people cannot take their jobs with them – so even though they may be able to live in a place like Argentina, Ecuador, or Thailand for 50% less than living at home – the lost income makes it impossible for them to afford.
‘Five Star Travel’
Another big reason people find travel abroad expensive is because they like to stay in five star hotels and plush resorts while overseas instead of simply renting a home or apartment comparable to the one they normally live in. If you ignore the idea of staying in a hotel and simply rent a place comparable to the one you live in now, the potential savings is enormous. Staying in your new found home for 3-6 months will often be more affordable on a daily basis then staying for two weeks at a five star resort.
A third reason people find travel expensive is because most of their ongoing expenses back home continue to accrue amid their absence. For example, when most people travel, they don’t cancel their cable bill, they don’t rent out their place to cover their mortgage (or cancel their lease), and they don’t suspend their car insurance, etc.
‘Recipe For A Mini-Retirement’
So the three most important components for actualizing a mini-retirement are:
1. Find a way to earn income while abroad
2. Rent a home or apartment in a local neighborhood instead of staying in a hotel
3. Cut most or all of your ongoing expenses back home
Here’s a quick example of the approximate expenses of staying home vs. taking a “min-retirement” abroad for six months:
- Rent or mortgage payment in a major North American city, including utilities: $1500/month x 6 months = $9000.
- Grocery/food bill: $500/month x 6 months = $3000
- Car insurance, gas, repairs and maintenance: $250/month x 6 months = $1500
Six Months Basic Expenses = $13,500
- Rent in a comparable home or apartment in an interesting and exciting place like Cuenca, Ecuador; Buenos Aires Argentina; Hanoi, Vietnam; or Las Tablas, Panama: $500/month x 6 months = $3000
- Grocery/food bill: $200/month x 6 months = $1200
- Taxi/transport (no car necessary): $50/month = $300
- Round trip flight to get there: $1500
Six Months Basic Expenses = $6000
That’s a savings of $7,500 over six months or $1250/month.
So you can see, by leaving home, you are already “earning” $1250 per month. Stated differently, you only need to earn $1000 per month to live comfortably abroad whereas you need to earn $2250/month to get by back home.
Of course, there are many other potential expenses apart from the basic expenses outlined above (health care, entertainment, cell phone, just to mention a few), all of which are likely to be higher back home. Notice that this example includes a fairly expensive $1500 round trip flight – many locations would be much cheaper to reach.
The point is, you can look at a mini-retirement abroad not as an expense, but as a savings.
‘Earning Income Abroad’
“This is all fine and dandy”, you might say, “but how am I going to make any money abroad if I quit my job back home?”
You have a couple of options:
1. Find temporary work in your new “home”.
2. Create a business you can do from anywhere.
Option number two is preferable because you may sow the seeds for a new hobby or business you can continue long after you return back home.
Problems That Create Opportunity
Taking a mini-retirement abroad opens up a variety of business and work opportunities that do not exist at home. Two of the main opportunities are related to solving the problems of distance and language.
Language. Language is a problem and so it is also an opportunity. A woman from the U.S. wanted to learn Spanish prior to her trip to Ecuador. However, there were no instructors near her home or existing classes were too expensive. So she searched the Internet and found an Ecuadorian English teacher who gave her instructive lessons over the Internet. Rather than paying a private tutor $50 per hour in the U.S. she paid her Ecuadorian teacher $5 per hour and received the same or better instruction. Someone could easily make a business out of promoting language tutors abroad, because not every language tutor knows how to promote themselves on the Internet.
Distance. Another example might be related to a wood carver in Vietnam, who has no idea how to promote his beautiful work to the international marketplace. You may find his products to be very valuable and create a web site to promote his work. So long as you have skills, knowledge, and passion for the product, you can use the Internet or your contacts back home to access buyers that he never could. The fact that he is not able to travel distances like you are gives you an opportunity to help his business grow and thus creates an opportunity for you.
The Value of Social Networking
Social networking can be a tool for you to make extra income during your mini-retirement. For example, you may go on a wine tasting tour in Argentina that you enjoyed immensely. If you create a blog and let your friends and business associates know about your experience, some of them may want to sign up for the tour as well. Most travel and tour companies will pay a referral fee or commission for any business you help them generate. It might be the first step toward your new business venture as the news about your experience spreads like wildfire.
The Mobile Business Platform
A lot of people see business opportunities during their travels abroad but they have no business platform established to harness the income. Turning an idea into a business you can do from anywhere requires a mobile business platform.
Some of these tools you need for your platform are a web site, blog, shopping cart, international phone number, credit card merchant system, web marketing, viral marketing, database development and storage, autoresponder and many others. If you do not know how to build a mobile business platform, you can learn how by taking the Retire Worldwide International Business Training Course.
Have No Fear
Many people let fear paralyze them and keep them from doing what they want to do. Most of these people end up with a life full of regrets and “should haves”. If you think that holding on to your 9-5 job is a secure option, think again. Being mobile and flexible in today’s global economy is one of the most secure traits you can develop because you can learn to seize opportunities as they appear and adapt to changes as they occur.
For those of us who live and work where we please, commuting in traffic to an office for a 9-5 job is so 1990s. For those of us who have broken free from the drudgery of corporate America , we can only smile as the ocean laps our toes while we poke away on our laptop “working for a living”.
Taking an idea from dream to reality is a process. Here is the basic process we teach our students:
Start. Start small but start today. Start with an idea, a dream, a place, or an objective and put it on paper. Don’t get overwhelmed by the end goal, just take the first step by writing down what you want your mini-retirement to look like.
Focus. Focus on your passion. If you don’t feel passion for your new adventure, it is not worth the effort. You will not be able to muster the endurance or overcome the obstacles unless you have passion for the places you want to go and things you want to do or see.
Open. Open your ideas to the world. Forget about your city of 2 Million people, and realize there are now billions of people around the world with an Internet connection who may find your specific ideas and adventures very interesting.
Learn. Learn how to use mobility tools. Learn to use Skype, PayPal, IContact, GoDaddy, Twitter, WordPress, Google AdWords/AdSense, You Tube, and all of the many new tools that make it easy for small businesses to get started and grow fast. Also, you must understand how to find unique opportunities that are only available to people who travel or live abroad. We teach people how to use these tools and find these opportunities in the Retire Worldwide International Business Training Course.
Ignore. Ignore your friends’ reprisals. Don’t listen to what the “real world” people say. Know that genius first appears as insanity and doubters are those who stayed home.
Visualize. Literally see yourself overlooking the ocean, raking in payments from global customers, while you sip your favorite beverage from your balcony. Olympic athletes use visualization for a reason.
Just do it. You’ve heard it before, but if you really want to change your life, only you can take the first step.
There is no better time to move beyond 9-5 and take a mini-retirement. It only takes a tablespoon of money, a large serving of desire, a heavy dose of creativity, and a huge platter of courage!
About The Author
Michael teaches the Retire Worldwide International Business Training Coursein an effort help others escape 9 – 5 and live a freewheeling mobile lifestyle independent of the typical time or space restrictions.
Next Course Starting Date: January 5, 2010
Course Lesson Intensity: One lesson every three days.
Course Fee: $399
Course Outline: Click Here To Read The Course Outline
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