Is the Life of a Roving Retiree for You?
My husband and I ‘fired’ the corporate world early! We had enough of late night teleconference calls. Not to mention we were tired of long hours spent commuting to work and the little time we had for ourselves and each other.
Our life today is one where we can travel where we want to, when we want to and how we want to. We are a new breed of retirees – a roving retiree.
‘Roving Retiree’ vs ‘Traditional Retiree’
A traditional retiree is one where you get to a stage in your life where you are not working anymore and have no plans to return to work. In most cases, it happens when you reach a retirement age that is determined by your country’s government as the ideal time to leave your employment.
A roving retiree is one that has retired either early or at the pre-determined age, and has given up their normal life for a life on the road. Just like us!
Some roving retirees have been able to take their skills along on the road with them, some learn new skills and others just enjoy the travel and the adventures. We, for instance, started a travel blog to inspire others to travel and have adventures in their retirement years.
We found it was much cheaper to travel than to sit on our sofa in our hometown of Sydney. That was a ‘aha’ moment for us, and we have not looked back. Just in the last year, we have been in Cuba, Barbados, Miami, Spain, UK, Ireland, India and Thailand.
Could It Be for You?
Before you start thinking you have to be wealthy to live a life on the road, we just want to stop you right there.
In fact, we have just presented at an International Conference in Australia and our topic was “How we travel the world on AUD 92 per day” which just happens to be the same figure of the Australian Aged Pension.
At the same conference there were presenters living their retirement years in overseas destinations where their costs where much less than living in their own country. Some of those countries were France, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia and Laos.
Here are some questions to ask yourself. Could you:
- Travel slowly, that is, spend more than the usual one or two weeks that you are used to when holidaying before retirement?
- Max the visa out? If you are given a visa stay of, e.g., 3 months, could you spend that whole time travelling around the country slowly and living more like a local?
- Enjoy meeting other roving retirees just like you?
- Shop at the local green market on a daily basis and enjoy the adventure of it all?
- Enjoy that chilled glass of white wine whilst also enjoying the sunset in a different country every few months?
- Be adventurous enough to try out each country’s local cuisine?
- Take that local train or bus timetable and head out for weekly adventures to places that you have never been before?
- Delve into the local history of a town or city and visit museums, libraries, monuments, churches etc.?
- Wander around the back streets and get lost and just enjoy the moment?
- Take that plunge and give yourself a life of adventure?
So if you have said ‘yes’ to all of the above, you could be a roving retiree.
Some roving retirees travel in this fashion for a few years after retirement and visit destinations that they may consider settling down in. By staying longer in a country you do certainly get a feel for whether you could actually live there or not.
Other roving retirees are following their passions, e.g., photography, writing, teaching English as a second language, taking up sports. All this activity, of course, keeps your body fit and your mind active. These people are reinventing themselves and having the most amazing adventures.
What About Family and Friends?
Apart from them catching up with you on your travels, we find that we speak more to our family and friends whilst on the road than when we are in our usual routine back home. With Skype, Viber and Facebook Messenger it is easy to stay in touch with your loved ones these days.
So, is the life of a Roving Retiree for you? What are your travel plans in retirement? Please share your experiences and passions for travel below.
Jane and Duncan Dempster-Smith are nomadic semi-retirees, baby boomers, travellers, House Sitters and co-founders of To Travel Too. Their motto is “Age is no barrier when it comes to travel.” Although not yet pensioners, their goal is to travel the world on what is currently the Australian Age Pension of approx. AUD 33,716 (USD 25,110) per year, or AUD 92 (USD 69) per day for two people.