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The Expat Chat: Lifestyle Travels and International Living

The Expat Chat is a weekday podcast where we interview inspiring expats who have thrown off the constraints of western congestion to enjoy their dream lifestyle in other parts of the world...often for a fraction of their cost of living back home. If you want the travels of Rick Stearn with the freedom of Tim Ferriss this podcast is for you.Subscribe today.
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The Expat Chat: Lifestyle Travels and International Living
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Now displaying: March, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

For many people living in a place that is 99% Muslim, in a city of over 15 million people with Syria on your border and 2 million refugees pouring into your country – this would be well outside your comfort zone. For Leonard Durso it’s just another experience of life in Turkey.

After becoming dissatisfied with life in Academia (see Claudia Tavani interview) Leonard moved permanently to Turkey in 2010 and has come to love the people, the lifestyle and the affordability of the country known as the crossroads between Europe and Asia. In this fascinating interview he shares his experiences of Turkish hospitality, the affordability of his adopted home, and why he isn’t troubled by the recent events in his neighboring countries.

You can find out more about Leonards life at his blog http://leonarddurso.com

What I learned from speaking with Leonard:

  1. Istanbul ranks higher on the affordability scale especially if living on the Asian side. Leonard has a 3 bedroom 150 sqm apartment with views of the Bosphorus for around $US600 per month - a snip compared to what the same would cost him back home
  2. Despite the proximity of unrest in neighboring Syria and the large number of refugees entering the country Leonard feels safe and at home. The people have been courteous and welcoming to him which has only served to raise the already high opinion he has of Turkish people before he moved
  3. Being an expat has enabled to understand what it’s like to be the “ other” – the minority in a majority country. It is a unique perspective that we should all learn to experience at some stage
  4. Leonard’ s experiences only serves to underline a common theme that comes through with many of the people we interview. That the view of the world that the media portrays doesn’t necessarily represent the truth and that we are guilty of grossly over generalizing about groups in society who are really no different in their wants, needs and priorities than we are.
Mar 14, 2016

Living an Expat lifestyle and leaving the 9 to 5 routine doesn’t necessarily meaning not exploring your own country as part of the journey. For Alabama native Kyle Brady and his partner Olivia Gould their old lives left them feeling trapped and not going anywhere. They had a desire to see more of their own country – Olivia hadn’t even seen a mountain prior to going!

The couple started their planning in September 2014 and after 12 months of downsizing and saving up (they set aside $300 per week by, amongst other things, not eating out) they hit the road with their renovated 16 foot RV and haven’t looked back. As Olivia rightly said, “Why live somewhere when you can live everywhere!”

We caught up with them at Slab City California where they detailed the process of their planning and preparation and how their Etsy store is able to provide them with enough income to sustain their monthly journey.

You can follow their blog at www.drivinandvibin.com and check out their Etsy store at https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheWoodenEarth   

What I learned from Kyle and Olivia’s interview:

  1. Having a vision board (this worked for John and Monika Mundell as well) is a great way to focus on the outcome you want and can be a wonderful reminder when things get tough as to why you are saving money or throwing out that old dress you used to love. It helped having the extra incentive of a free pizza from their friends but is an exercise worth doing yourselves.
  2. You can RV with a dog. Although they are restricted from taking their pet into national parks they can generally find somewhere that will mind him for the day while they head off on a trip
  3. Check out Etsy as an option for funding your new lifestyle. Like Micah and Jenna Kvidt these guys have found the online world can help fund their lifestyle – in fact the $2000 per month they are making will cover their total costs.
  4. If looking to go the Rv route there is a wealth of online information available to help you and Kyle and Olivia have found a supportive network on the road as well. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when others have the answers for you
  5. You can work RVing to your budget. These guys spend mostly on camping and food however there are places you can camp for free and they are self-sufficient with cooking. They can slow the speed of travel to save on gas.
  6. You don’t have to leave the country to enjoy an expat lifestyle. Like Chuck and Lori Ros and Heath Padgett Kyle and Olivia have learned to appreciate what their own country has to offer. Every country is an expat community to somebody!
Mar 14, 2016

 Leon Logothetis was a London stockbroker working in the city. On the outside he had it all but on the inside he felt miserable and depressed. His future looked set in stone until one day he watched an inspirational movie called the Motorcycle Diaries and he realized that his future was not going to improve unless he changed. Inspired he headed off on an adventure to travel the world spreading kindness along the way.

Leon has gone on to visit over 90 countries and inspire thousands with his books and television series including Amazing Adventures of a Nobody and The Kindness Diaries. His work tabling the generosity of others has featured on CNN, Good Morning America and television and newspaper around the world.

We caught up with Leon where he shares his philosophy on kindness and tells us some of the incredible people he has encountered on his journey. You can check out what Leon is up to on his website http://www.leonlogothetis.com

 

What I learned from talking to Leon:

  1. Bhutan measures its national happiness…shouldn’t all countries do that! Im not sure how they measure it but the fact that they do is a big head start for me. Better put it on my list of places to visit.
  2. We talk often on the show about how travel confirms we are more similar than we think. We also are often amazed at the generosity of others while traveling and Leon’s adventures confirm this. His stories are uplifting and a tribute to humanity. Sometimes we do get the formula right.
  3. Small acts of kindness can leverage into greater benefits to all. Leons story of the homeless man in Denver who offered him shelter led to a $60,000 crowdfunding campaign for the man and the opportunity to leverage the generosity to a higher level.
  4. Trust your 6th sense for danger. This is your body’s intuition and shouldn’t be ignored. Travel is one the best ways to develop this sense further.
Mar 1, 2016

From Greeks Islands to the Emerald Isles; Our Family Sabbatical in Greece and Ireland

Tina Lavelle had traveled Europe when she was younger, and the urge to return had never left. Her husband Ralph had grown up in Ireland and both felt a desire to leave their suburban Australia lifestyle for some freedom abroad. In 2015 they packed up their two children, rented out their home and firstly headed to the Greek island of Zakynthos where they enjoyed 4 sun filled months before heading for Dublin where they are now settled in.

We joined Tina to discuss the process of schooling her children locally in both countries, how accommodation sharing sites like Couchsurfing and Helpx have provided them with much more than saving money and how you can self publish a book of your adventures while away.

You can check out their blog at http://kouklahouse.com where you’ll find their book “ On a Greek Island; A Season in Zakynthos”

What I learned from talking with Tina:

  1. Kids are so adaptable when it comes to schooling. Tina’s children have spent time both in Greek school and now in Irish ones during their journey. Like the Wagoners , Scarlett Thomas and Danna Bowman they found their children can adapt quickly to a new environment in local schools
  2. If you’re looking to earn a little money from your adventure then why not write a book and self-publish? Tina’s husband has written a story of their life on the Greek island of Zakynthos and published via Amazon. Although not likely to fund your entire journey it can provide a small top up in income. Check out our interview with Virginie Carmichael who has also self-published several books
  3. Couchsurfing has been a great way to get around and get to know cultures. Even as a family of four they have been able to enjoy the benefits of local hospitality. They have also used Helpx – another unique accommodation sharing site where people can trade accommodation for work. This allows them to stay longer than couchsurfing.

 

 

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