Sabbatical: The cost of six months of travel
15.000 Euro I had saved for the six months sabbatical without working, but with a lot of traveling. Beside the costs for the travels as such, the money had to be enough also for the current fixed costs.Quite a lot of money, the largest sum I have ever owned. And in fact I came up with it quite exactly.
Invests in lifelong memories, countless unique moments, the best chocolate in Belgium, paragliding in Switzerland, a helicopter flight in Greenland, lavender fields, visits to temples, monks’ breakfasts in Japan, Chinese water villages – my happiness.
How I got the money?
No, unfortunately I do not own a cash cow. I simply saved. Which went quite well, because my monthly Fixed costs are quite small. I don’t have a car, not even a monthly ticket for public transportation, instead I mostly ride my bike. I haven’t joined a gym for a long time, I do a few exercises at home and jogging doesn’t cost me anything either. I am not in a club and my apartment is also cheap. This way, I quickly have a few hundred euros left over from my salary as an employee. Which, if I don’t spend them on useless shopping again, have a good place on my savings account. Sorry that there is no surprising magic formula here now. But the good thing is, the way I managed it, anyone can do it.
The most important thing, I am convinced, are the regular expenses. For the time of the trip I have reduced some fixed costs even further. I paused my private pension insurance and abolished subscriptions.
Of course, there is always something left over for running costs. The cell phone bill and health insurance, for example. When it comes to rental costs, however, there is a solution, even without becoming homeless: If you live alone, you can rent out your apartment for the duration of your trip. Of course you should clarify this with your property management beforehand. If this works out, the biggest problem is already solved.
Tip 1: Keep your fixed costs low and try to reduce them even more for the free time.
I am one of the lucky ones who still get something like vacation and Christmas bonuses. I had also saved that directly. Don’t even plan for anything else, directly with it to the savings account. So the travel wallet was filled without much effort.
Tip 2: Save extra payments completely.
My travel countries I have chosen not exactly inexpensive. Europe travels expensive, Japan and Greenland really rob the wallet. I didn’t care, because I really wanted to go there. But if you want to travel as long as possible and cheaply, you better look for cheaper travel countries. Thailand and some other Asian countries are recommended by globetrotters again and again. Especially accommodation and food should be super cheap on the spot. Also a few countries in South America can be traveled budget-friendly.
Tip 3: Take a close look at what you will spend in which country and plan the itinerary according to your budget.
In order to be able to make the expensive travel countries nevertheless, I did without luxury locally. Instead of a hotel, I stayed in a hostel and where possible, I stayed for free via Couchsurfing. Instead of going to a restaurant I mostly bought food in the supermarket and cooked myself. For that I could treat myself to some special excursions and activities like paragliding, helicopter flight and an overnight stay with the monks.
Tip 4: Who renounces luxury can save on the way. Hostel instead of hotel, supermarket instead of restaurant.
Now six months are almost over, my wallet is empty, the savings account also shows a fat zero. There is just enough money in my account to cover the four weeks until I get my first paycheck. And every euro was worth it, could not have been better invested to my taste. Because my head and my heart are full of memories. I could enjoy countless great views, experience so many unique moments, get to know other people and cultures. The only disadvantage? My office job seems even more pointless than before and the travel fever is not quenched but even greater. Now I am probably finally chronically wanderlust-sick. That’s why I’ve already decided: I’m going to reactivate the travel money box with my first salary.
Tip 5: Caution is advised. Read the package insert first, once you’ve set off, chronic wanderlust is not out of the question.
So as you can see I did not win the lottery. I have saved and yes I have come up with a nice sum. But I also have no more reserves and basically live with as few fixed costs as possible. Of course it’s always a question of what you earn, but it’s also a question of lifestyle. Someone who invests in a car, a lot of property and an expensive gym will certainly not be able to save as fast as someone who lives cheaply for rent and takes the bike to work. Anyone can make it, just at a different pace. In the end, the important thing is to have a goal and just get started.
I have been to these places in the last six months:
Japan – two weeks by plane and train:
China – two weeks:
Netherlands – two weeks by train:
Prague – three days
Belgium – two weeks by train:
- Grotto de Han
Switzerland – two weeks by train:
France – three weeks:
- Cote d’Azure: Nice, Marseille, Monaco, Saint Tropez
Greenland – three weeks:
And that’s quite a lot for 15.000 euros. Or? What do you think? Tell me about it in a comment below this article
You are not sure yet if you should venture the big adventure also? Maybe these interviews with people who have taken a sabbatical will give you a nudge:
Sabbatical Interviews :
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