Welcome to our Travel Blog. We are Michael and Halef. We are a couple from Atlanta, Georgia. We’ve been together since 2008 and in 2013, we traveled to New York City to get married!
While we’ve both been in the United States for over two decades, neither of us is originally from here. So let us introduce ourselves.
After getting a M.Sc. (Education), I moved to Atlanta from Canada to work at a university. Hated it! After that, I worked for a large telcom in the Learning and Development Department.
Loved it! The great thing about sticking with a company for so long is that I’ve built up a lot of vacation time. That meant I could travel more than your average person and travel became an addiction. So much so that I left that job in August 2019 to travel the world full-time.
Before this trip, I visited about 50 countries. My longest trip was a month; my shortest was a day and a half. Now, my goal is to see everything.
I was born and grew up in Bandung, Indonesia. After high school, I moved to the States for college. I ended up at Iowa State University. My American college life was enjoyable. I even spent several months in a study abroad program in Rome, Italy.
I’m a Landscape Architect by profession, but a traveler at heart. My travel has taken me to over 50 countries where I love to learn new cultures and languages! I have interests in brushing up on my Italian, Mandarin, and American Sign Language.
Travel books are my favorite things to read, and I have an obsession with producing travel journals, which probably explains why I became a travel writer.
Travel brings us together
We’re from two completely different cultures, obviously. There’s 9 years separating us.
Michael used to work from home all day and was just happy to relax on the couch at night and binge on the latest thing he found on Netflix or HBO Now.
Halef is a perfect match for Michael because Halef is a great travel planner. He loves to read travel books and blogs, while daydreaming about the endless possibilities of where the road will take us next.
Michael loves to tag along and his outgoing personality and wittiness entertain the people around him.
We see everything. We do more. And we learn more. Best of all, we do it together.
What you will find here
Our mission is to show people our age – in their 40s – that they can travel the world on a reasonable budget. Our goal is never to exceed $75 per day on average. Some experiences will be expensive. Some days won’t cost us anything. We’ll give you tips on dozens of travel-related subjects, like:
- Interesting things to include in your travel journal
- Our experience diving on Liveaboards
- Food around the world (for example, Indonesia!)
- Stuff to consider before traveling to remote places
- Quirky stuff, like diving in aquariums!
- Weird places to visit
- and ideas that worked for us
In addition to all of the above, you’ll find lots of information about Couchsurfing here. We’re Couchsurfing experts – having hosted nearly 500 people and surfed dozens of couches and spare bedrooms around the world. From creating a profile, writing Couch requests, to hosting and surfing, you’ll find advice here that’s worked well for us.
Our Round The World mission
We travel full-time now. Planning it is a fun part of the process. Up until recently, our goal was to highlight past travels – reviews, unique experiences, and travel tips we’ve learned about over the years.
Because we always had a regular paycheck, we really didn’t have a budget. We do now. We’re going to show you ways to stick to it and have an amazing time!
Our blog focuses on:
- How to save money for travel
- Finding ways to have fun while traveling on a budget
- Blogging itself. We’ll show you how you can set one up for yourself.
- Make money from our blog and other channels. After all, we’re going to need to continue paying when the savings dry up!
Where are we? How did we get here? How much did it cost? Where are we going next? All in one weekly summary email. Plus personal stuff you won’t find on the blog. Easy signup. Easy unsubscribe. No spam. Ever.
Where will we go?
While we love Western countries, we will likely concentrate on more developing countries during our round the world trip. We’ve both been to Western Europe, so we won’t need to spend much, if any time, in places like the U.K., France, or Scandinavia. We’ve already done all that, so avoiding Western Europe should be a big money saver for us!
Our current round the world plan, which changes weekly (or whenever someone who stays with us from Couchsurfing offers alternatives), is to fly from Atlanta to Peru in South America. We’ll likely travel around there for some time.
Our tentative RTW Itinerary
After spending two months in Peru, we’re tentatively planning the following:
- Head to Italy for a month
- Come back to Atlanta and apply for Michael’s citizenship
- Fly to Indonesia and spend 2-3 months there.
- Next to China and Mongolia for awhile
- Maybe take the Trans-Siberian Railway through Russia
- Down through some of the “-stans” and India
- Through Iran and over to Turkey
- Fly to Dubai and then to Djibouti for an overland trip all the way to South Africa
- Somehow, we’ll make our way to France and visit friends for a week or so – a vacation from our vacation
- Then, … who knows?
All in 2 years? Or 5-10? Permanently? We’re not sure.
But for a glimpse of some of the stuff we want to do, here is our Ultimate round the world bucket list! We think this is a good list!
We really don’t know where our round the world trip will take us. We just know we’re doing it.
We’re both really excited to share our journey with you. It’s going to be different, for sure.
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