TRAVELING FOR 4 MONTHS (Q&A) ‣‣ budget, planning, tips & more

TRAVELING FOR 4 MONTHS (Q&A) ‣‣ budget, planning, tips & more


– Hi friends, welcome back to my channel. If you’re new here my name is Alyssa. Today we are doing a travel Q and A. I got a ton of questions
submitted via Instagram and I thought the best
way to answer everything is just to film a video
and share it with you guys. So we’re gonna be talking about budgeting, we’re gonna be talking about eating, we’re talking about planning,
and basically all the things. So just wanna make a little caveat. I am using natural light and the clouds are in and out today so if it gets like dark light sorry. Also, we’re staying in an
Airbnb right now in Chinatown and we’re like right behind me so the windows are right
on like the main street of Chinatown in London and
it’s a little bit loud. So if you hear some background
noise that’s what’s going on. Also wanted to let you know that I have written a blog
post to go along with this where I’ve kinda like
written out the answers to some of these questions. So if you wanna check that out I’ve linked it down below for you and I’ve also included all
of my travel-related videos, everything like that. I’ve linked the travel playlist up here. So without further ado let’s
get started with our questions. The first topic that I’m
going to tackle is budgeting because that is what I got
the most questions about. There were questions like
do you have a daily budget? Budget-wise which would
best, hotel or Airbnb? Actually that is gonna be a specific thing that I’ll answer in a second. Do you have any tips for
not exceeding your budget? Do you have a budget? How did you budget? How are you affording this? So there’s a lot of questions about that. A few things that I want to say before we dive into
budgeting is number one, we have given up our
apartment in New York. So we don’t have our life
expenses in New York anymore. New York is obviously one of if not the most expensive
place to live in the US. So all of that money that
we were putting towards rent and just life in general
in New York is now free and well like not free but is freed up and so we’ve been able to use that money that we would’ve been spending
at home on our life here. So that has kind of helped with that. The second thing is that I
still have my business running. So I still have like a
regular income coming in. I’m still making the same amount of money that I was making before. So for me the budget process
hasn’t quite been like how maybe a lot of people
would be doing this trip because I’m able to do my job anywhere. So I still have a job. Matt does not have a job
so he did quit his job and he has his own like budgeting process. But for me I didn’t have a
set budget in mind going in. I think I kind of had like
a loose number in my head but I didn’t want this trip to be like focused on the money really. Since we were spending so much on housing and everything like that in New York we’ve been able to, like I said,
use that and I kind of know how much I want to spend
per month on accommodations, which I’m trying to like
kind of match with rent. Obviously, we’re spending more on food because we’re eating out a lot more. I do think that we have a few things and maybe tactics that we’re using that are helping us save a
little bit of money on food, especially like maybe not
going out every single day and we’re first of all not getting coffee and
matcha out every day. So that can really add up
like a $3 coffee whatever, that adds up. So instead I have all of
my matcha stuff with me and then we usually hit a grocery store when we get to a place and we will have like coffee stuff for him so that he can have his coffee. The other thing is that we are not really
eating breakfast out at all. So whether we are staying
in an Airbnb or a hotel we’ll usually get snacks. Usually hotels, we’ll try to get ones that have breakfast included
so that that is something that we don’t have to
worry about paying for and then Airbnb’s we at
minimum always have breakfast at the Airbnb. So that is saving on that. And then Airbnb’s we’re also cooking. So we’ll just go to a grocery store and we usually aren’t going
out every single night if we’re staying in an Airbnb. So we’ll do a mixture
of cooking and going out and that definitely helps
save a little bit of money. Oh, the other thing. I was gonna dive into another question but the other thing is that we are also using credit card points for a lot of things that we’re buying like hotels and flights. He and I both have a Chase
Sapphire Reserve card I think, which is really, really great for travel. First of all it doesn’t have
foreign transaction fees, so you don’t have to worry about like spending money in euros and then having to pay
a fee on top of that for them to convert it back to US dollars. Blah, that was a mouthful. But you also get points
on travel-related expenses that you can then redeem
for other travel rewards. So I think it’s like two
and maybe 3X on things like dining out, travel
expenses like flights, trains, taxis, metro cards,
like anything like that you’re getting double points
for what you’re spending. So for example if you spent $40 you would get 80 points for that. So that has definitely added up for us and we’ve been able to redeem our points for hotels and flights. You can’t get points for Airbnbs. So we do pay out of pocket for that and also for budget airlines
so things like Ryanair or easyJet or Wizz or Vueling or any of these like more
budget-related airlines. Here in Europe you can’t use
your points for that either so we’ll pay out of pocket for those but then we get the points for them so it kind of all like helps even out. So I would say that that’s kind of how
we’ve been able to do it and I think that it’s
something to consider if you are thinking of going on an extended period
of time internationally. Think about how you can
potentially maximize your credit card value so that you can be getting the points back and then you can end up
getting things for free like hotel stays and flights
and things like that. Somebody also asked about
what’s best budget wise, Airbnb versus a hotel and I
think that it really depends on what you are wanting to do. What we’re trying to do is if we’re staying
somewhere for a night or two even three maybe we’ll do a hotel. If we’re staying anywhere
for more than three nights we do an Airbnb. It’s just a lot more
comfortable, you can spread out, you have a kitchen, you
have a living space, you have a bedroom. It’s really helpful since I
am getting up in the morning and working or working out
I can like shut the door and not wake him up. Can’t really do that in a hotel. So I don’t think that one is necessarily cheaper than the other. I think that you can get price range wise like you can go really high
on Airbnbs as well as hotels. You can also get budget
Airbnbs and budget hotels. So what I would do is I
would pick your budget that you wanna spend per
night, say it’s $100 per night and then I would look
at your hotel options and I would look at your Airbnb options. I would look by location, see
which one is more comfortable or which one you think is a better value and book from there. So I hope that answers that question. Next for accommodation, somebody asked how much of this trip is hosted? So like how much am I
getting invited to stay and then people are comping my stay? And the answer is only
one place has done that. The place that we stayed at in Cork that I mentioned in our Ireland vlog, which I’ll link up here, they did comp us graciously
for a two-night stay and the reason that I decided that I didn’t want to
have this trip comped is that we haven’t been
planning it very far in advance. We’ve kind of been doing
it a week and a half maybe two weeks out and
for example actually we’re going to Portugal tomorrow and we literally just booked
our hotel this morning. So we aren’t planning too far ahead which is giving us a ton of flexibility which I really value on this trip and if we were trying to get comped like everywhere we’re going we would have to be booking everything out like far in advance and that just doesn’t let
us have the flexibility to move around. and it also makes me feel like
a little bit more required to like share specific things even if I don’t necessarily find that I like where I’m staying. So I decided to just like pay
out of pocket for everything and it gives you guys a more
like realistic experience by what I’m seeing because I’m like giving you
my real opinion on everything and it also just gives
us more flexibility. So that answers that. We’re only getting comped once. Okay, let’s talk about
how you eat on vacation while traveling when it’s hard to eat out. Do you bring food? I haven’t really brought
food for this trip. I did actually post a video before we left about the food I was bringing and I got like so many people
that were like you’re crazy. You shouldn’t be bringing all that stuff. You can get it all over here. So I paired it all down, I
brought like five protein bars and I brought some green
juice powder and that was it and it’s been totally fine. I did bring my matcha,
which I’m so glad I did. I have matcha every single morning, and I also brought some
Four Sigmatic packets, which I’ve really liked. But other than that I
haven’t brought anything. Eating out wise, I don’t feel
like I’ve had really trouble finding healthy food here. Obviously like this part of the world is kind of similar to the US
in just like where things are. I would say we probably
have more options in the US at this point but it really
does depend on where you are in the world and what your options are. So Europe I feel like has
been pretty great so far. I did write a post about how
I’m finding the restaurants. So if you’re interested in like how do you find all these vegan
places that you’re sharing? I wrote a whole post
about how to find them. There’s six different ways that I’m using to find restaurants to eat at. So I’ll link that down below
for you if you’re interested. And then somebody also asked
about eating gluten free, dairy free, plant based and
has that been challenging? And the answer again is like not really. I actually feel like Europe is
a little bit farther advanced on like their awareness of allergies. I’ve found a lot of places
that I walk into the restaurant and I sit down at a table and they will, the first thing that they ask is do you have any food allergies? I’ve also been able to find
like a ton of vegan restaurants. I’ve been able to find
gluten-free restaurants and then if I can’t necessarily find one maybe I just find a restaurant
that looks really good but I can’t like tell what
the menu is looking like I’ll call ahead and I’ll
see if they can accommodate. So it honestly hasn’t been
that hard for me over here. Have you been suffering from
traveler’s constipation? My digestion has been
pretty good over here. I’m still eating primarily plant-based and I’m trying to drink a ton of water and I’m also exercising every single day. So I feel like that has
helped keep me regular. Obviously like sometimes
there’s like some like spurts of diarrhea or whatever but I
haven’t had any constipation. I’m not somebody that actually really
struggles with that ever but I would say overall like
I’m just trying to make sure that I’m still getting fiber, I’m still getting some raw vegetables to help with like the roughage
stuff with my digestion and I’m drinking a lot of water. I’m drinking my matcha. I’m making sure that I’m getting
proteins and healthy fats. So overall I would say that my digestion has been
pretty good which is great. I definitely get bloated, I definitely get a little
gassy and farty sometimes but overall I would say that as long as you’re like trying to eat kind of close to how you eat
at home you should be fine. Somebody asked where has your
dog been this whole time? So that is probably one of the things that I think has been the
hardest about this trip is not being with her. She is staying in Colorado
with Matt’s family. She’s in Denver having
the time of her life. She is totally fine without me. They’re having snow,
she’s playing in the snow, she’s going to the
mountains like she’s fine but I definitely think
about her every single day. I look at pictures of
her every single day. I watch videos of her. I like just think of her like
in little moments of time and I really, really miss her. I just can’t wait to be reunited with her. It’s just like, I’m
thinking about the moment like all the time and it
just makes me so excited. I’m gonna see her on the 27th of December and I’m definitely gonna get it on film so it’s something that I
can like cherish forever because I know she’s just
gonna be like so happy and so excited, I can’t wait. So yeah, she’s in Colorado
having the time of her life. Somebody asked why did you go to Europe in the fall or winter? And for us this is just
the timing that worked out. Our lease was up, our landlord
was selling our apartment. We had lived there for 6-1/2 years and we just were like this is the time. It’s been amazing over here. I love Europe in the fall. It’s definitely starting
to get a little colder which is fine but we had
amazing weather in the fall. It wasn’t too hot, it’s not too crowded. I think fall is like the
perfect time to visit Europe. So I would recommend it. Somebody is asking about
how I planned my content. So like I said, business
is still runnin’ as usual. You guys are still
getting all of the content that I would normally be sharing. It’s definitely a little
bit more travel focused but recipe wise still
creating all of the recipes that I would have been sharing otherwise. However, I just filmed them all ahead. So I basically took all of 2019 or the beginning of 2019
and also last fall of 2018 to create recipes for this time of year. So I had recipes done from the beginning of
August through December. I shot all of the content. I haven’t written everything. So I’m still like writing
while I’m over here but I shot all my photos
and all my videos. So I’m still able to give you
at least two to three recipes every single week and at
least one recipe-related video every single week and
hopefully it hasn’t felt like there is a lapse in anything and then just the extra
content that I’ve been creating is just travel related. So vlogs, what I eat in a
days, travel tips, et cetera. Somebody is asking about skin. So there’s two more questions. Number one is about skin,
how I’m keeping my skin clear while I’m traveling and the
answer is I’m not really. My skin has been, like it
goes through waves basically while I’m over here. When I was in Italy and Rome
it was like not good at all. It was like getting rashy
and zitty on my cheeks which I never get and now
it’s just kind of like I’ll get like random zits here and there but basically like it’s not perfect. I’m just trying to drink a lot of water, I’m trying to exercise every single day, and I’m trying to just like
eat as healthy as possible. Okay the final question is how long are you doing this trip for and then also when you travel are you staying in touristy locations? So it’s kind of a two-part question. The first part this isn’t
an indefinite adventure although I wish it was, it’s not. We aren’t on visas so we do have to be out
of the European Union within a 90-day period. So we can’t stay more than 90 days within a six-month period. So we are planning on going home right before Christmas the
19th or 20th of December. We’re gonna be flying to Boston, staying with my family
in Vermont for Christmas and then flying back out
of Boston on the 27th to Colorado to pick up Trevie and then we don’t really
have a plan from there yet. So we’ll figure that all out
whenever, I’m not sure when but we are going to be like back in the States for Christmas. And then the final thing
is when we’re traveling where are we staying? Are we staying in the touristy locations in the centers of cities or are we going like on the outskirts? And we’re doing both. We are definitely staying
primarily in cities. We both love cities. I love the culture of cities. I love seeing different
cities in the same country just like getting different feels of them. I think it’s a great way to
experience the local cuisine, the local culture, there’s
just like so much happening. So I personally love it and
when we are staying in a city we try to stay in the center of things so that we can walk around and explore, try all the restaurants
and stuff like that. But we actually are also mixing in kind of like outskirts type thing. We’ve had a few trips
to like mountain areas. We did Tuscany, we did Ireland,
we did the Netherlands, we’re doing Portugal and Spain. A lot of those will also
not just be focused on like the main cities. So we’re doing a mixture of both. I think it just kind of
depends on like what you like. If you like cities go to the cities and if you are going to
be going to the cities I would recommend
spending a little bit more to stay in the downtown areas, especially if you’re limited on time so that you can like really
explore and walk around and not have to worry
about like timing trains and getting taxis or whatever it is. So that would just be my
personal recommendation but again, kind of up to you guys. So that pretty much does it my friends. I feel like I’ve been talking for ages. Sorry if the background
noise is really loud. I just hear people like
banging glass around in the background, I’m just like ugh. Hopefully this was still
helpful and interesting. If you have any questions for me, any additional questions,
any like whatever ask ’em down in the comments, I will respond to you and get back to you. I’ve also linked
everything that I mentioned down in the description box and I’ve time stamped everything. So anyway, I hope you guys enjoyed it. Thank you so much for being here. Thanks for following
along on this adventure. It’s been the adventure
of a lifetime so far. I am having the best time. I’ve loved exploring all of
these different countries. It’s going by so fast and I can’t believe that we’re
already over halfway done but we still have a lot
to come; Portugal, Spain; and then we’re not really
sure what the middle slash end of December
is gonna look like yet. So actually if you have
any recommendations for where we should visit in December that’s kind of near here,
well in either Europe, Morocco, we’re talking
about, not really sure, let me know in the comments. And otherwise that’s all I have. So thanks so much for tuning in. I really appreciate you guys being here. Thanks for asking your questions and for being interested
in all this stuff. I will see you in the next video and I hope you have an
awesome rest of your day, bye.

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