How to Pull the Trigger, Buy That One-Way Ticket, and Start a Life of Travel (Even If You’re “Not Ready”)

Virtual high fives and awkwards hugs to all my sharers out there! ✊

“Babe, you sure? Like 100% sure? Cuz there’s no turning back after I click Purchase…Say ‘yes’ and I’ll do it.”

My heart fluttered. I was terrified. I knew this was it. Buying this one-way ticket would be a defining moment in our lives. I was one click away from the point of no return. 

No more waiting. No more excuses. No more wimping out.

It was decision time. 

The “Perfect Time” to Start a Travel Life Doesn’t Exist

See, Dayan and I have dreamed of exploring the world together and living a life of travel ever since we met. After a month of dating, we set a goal to leave for Asia within six months.

It has now been three years

Three years of finding reasons to continually push back our travel plans…

First we just wanted to get to know each other better.
Travel plans delayed.

Then we realized we loved each other and had to wait for the wedding.
Travel plans delayed.

Then we figured the first year of marriage is hard enough as is—mixing in a nomadic lifestyle with no stable income was just asking for trouble.
Travel plans delayed.

Then we started investing in real estate.
Travel plans delayed.

Then we needed an online business.
Travel plans delayed.

You know what?

I’m fed up with excuses.
I hate that I’ve fallen back into my comfort zone.
And I’m ashamed every time I look at the travel goals I wrote THREE YEARS AGO and see this:

This is what happens when you make goals without a specific plan to achieve them...😣

It’s Now or Never

Dayan and I want kids someday. And we’re not getting any younger.

One day at lunch she said what we’d both been thinking…

“If we want to explore the world before having kids, our window is closing.”

It was true.

The problem was, we weren’t ready.

My online work still isn’t where I’d like it to be. She has an important job in her family’s business. We have properties we need to sell. We have a mortgage. We have a car. We don’t have enough money saved to start a travel life…

But despite all that, we decided to have a “travel planning night” – just to explore our options.

Things escalated quickly.

I stumbled on a killer deal for one-way tickets to the Philippines—a flight leaving less than 4 months out.

What was meant to be a fun “where do we want to go someday” research night instantly turned into one of the biggest decisions of our lives. 

I typed in our credit card info without really thinking, then just stared at the screen.

All our excuses started flooding through my head. 

No. We weren’t ready. Not even close.

Day saw I was worried and said…

“Babe, if not now…when?”

She was right. It was now or never.

I said, “Ok, let’s do this! I love you!”

And clicked “Confirm Purchase”.

*GULP*

My wife and I buying our one-way ticket to start our life of travel
No turning back now!

UH.OH. What Have We Done??

Taking the leap and buying your ticket makes everything REAL.

It doesn’t change the fact that it isn’t the “perfect time”. It doesn’t make your excuses instantly disappear. It doesn’t fix all your problems.

But it does fix your BIGGEST problem…your “I’ll Do It Someday” Problem.

After buying a ticket, there is no more “someday”. Now you have a date. Time to get your shiz together. The clocks ticking.

Time to figure out how to save more money.
Time to figure out what to do with all your stuff.
And, perhaps hardest of all, time to figure out how to break the news to your family…

Life’s About to Get Complicated…

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Speaking of family—prepare yourself for pushback.

See, when you sit your family down to drop the bomb—the “I’m abandoning my career, college degree, earthly possessions, security, loved ones, life progress, etc. so I can live a life of travel and take an open-ended adventure around the world” bomb—how do you think they’ll respond?

Probably not well.

And in their defense, it’s understandable.

They want what’s best for you.
They’ve helped you build the life you have.
They can’t just sit back and watch you throw it away.

They mean well. But they’re completely missing the point…

You are not meant for a comfortable, ordinary life.
You want more.
You want EXTRAordinary.

Some People Just Won’t Understand (And That’s OK)

I dealt with this type of pushback when I left the U.S. four years ago to start my travel life…

Everyone told me I’d regret it. That I was wasting my potential. Being irresponsible. Running away. 

I didn’t care.

There was nothing anyone could do or say to stop me. I knew what I wanted. I was all in. And I haven’t regretted it for a second.

This time around, things are a bit different.

Breaking the news to my family was easy. (They’re used to me being gone.)

But Day’s family…now that’s a different story.

See, Colombian families are what you’d call “tightly knit”.

Colombian family
The Gringo and (half of) his Colombian family

When someone leaves, it’s complicated.

To give you an idea…

Day is the definition of a “daddy’s girl”. She’s the right-hand woman in her dad’s real estate business and the only person he trusts to handle sensitive information. For the past several years, he’s taken her under his wing and taught her everything he knows about real estate.

Now that she’s leaving, he feels like it was all a waste.
He’s losing the only person he trusts.
He’s devastated.

Then there’s her mom. Her mom lives alone, depends on Day financially, and suffered from depression the last time Day left the country. 

We still haven’t told her yet.

(See what I mean by complicated?)

It’s Not Easy, but It’s Worth It

Here’s the thing.

The truth is, you’re never going to feel completely ready to leap outside your comfort zone and start your life of travel and adventure.

It’s terrifying!

And unless you live in a vacuum, that “leap” is going to make some waves.
Things might get complicated.
People might get upset. 

But you can’t let that stop you.

Remember—it’s YOUR life we’re talking about here.

YOU are in control.

And if YOU don’t act on your travel dreams, nobody’s going to do it for you.

So…you want an extraordinary life, do you?

Then go buy that ticket. Fix your “Someday” Problem once and for all.

No more waiting. No more excuses. 

Because the “perfect time”?

It actually does exist.

It’s right NOW.


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4 thoughts on “How to Pull the Trigger, Buy That One-Way Ticket, and Start a Life of Travel (Even If You’re “Not Ready”)”

  1. Mitch, you nailed it – just terrific. Made me laugh and I recognised a lot of it from way back. When we (family of 4) left to live in Dubai and travel the Middle and Far East.

    You’ll have a ball! You’ll have so many memories, you’ll never regret it. Enjoy every second of the preparations, family troubles and all – it’s all part of the big experience.

    Have the best time ever. Looking forward to hear how you both overcome the problems, do your packing, pack up your house and make it to the departure gate. Rosemary

    1. Thanks, Rosemary! It definitely should be an interesting adventure we’ll never forget!

      P.S. – I’d love to read all about YOUR experience leaving for Dubai someday!

  2. My heart started pounding just reading this. Oh my gosh! So exciting!!! It’s real.

    I’m so excited about following your story.

    Plus, I kind of want a peek inside your travel journal…

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