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Globe-trotting on $50 a day.

Eleven months ago we were putting in what seemed like 20 hour days in the run up to handing over the house keys and flying off on our new adventure. All the angst, anxiety & excitement meant very little sleep and zero time for reflection. Almost a year has gone by and a lot has changed!!!

We are “working” our seventh housesit in Boquete, Panama and have had a couple of very quiet weeks as we recover from a very hectic travel schedule to get here. The huge covered patio with a sublime view of Volcano Baru is our favourite part of the house and where we have had some in depth discussions recently.

Boquete View

It will not surprise you to know that we are thoroughly enjoying our new lifestyle. Therefore the question is how do we sustain it indefinitely? (Or at least until we are ready to settle down)

It is very easy to see that Central America is a lot more cost friendly than Europe, looking back over the year it is easy to track our biggest expenditures.

Getting from A to B is the biggest drain on finances, especially flying or leasing cars, Europe’s toll roads add on a tidy sum too.

Our expenses over the last year averages out to $3000 per month, that includes 5 months in England and the European continent. It also includes transport, accommodation, food, wine, scuba diving, various tours and having the time to do what we want.

That may seem like a lot of money, however let’s put this in perspective…. how much did you spend on your last 2 week vacation? Probably more than $3,000?  We were spending more than that on food, heating, power etc. in our home near Vancouver and that’s with no mortgage!

Room with a view

A very well-known travel blogger has just produced a book titled “How to Travel the World on $50 USD Per Day”

Doesn’t sound possible does it? It is, we have proved it, $3,000 per month is $100 per day as there are two of us that is $50 per day each. Even better is that we did not have to stay in dormitories or hostels, in fact we stayed in some very nice resorts.  We only used local transit when it was convenient and for the longer hauls we used, planes, shuttles, taxi or the more upscale tourist buses.

City in the sea peniscola spain

Our European adventure lifestyle was not sustainable, however Central America certainly is. Nicaragua and Panama have excellent pensianado programs making it very easy to move and retire here.

The cost of basic supplies is a lot less, a 24 of local beer is only $11 (cold ones at that), chicken breast is less than $4 a kilo, a big bag of fruit & vegetable’s is just a few dollars. I paid $1 for a kilo of my favourite Passion Fruit yesterday.

Long term rentals are available throughout the area, starting as low as $350 per month. Houses in one very scenic Boquete neighbourhood rent out for only $800 a month, that’s 3 bedrooms, office and a stupendous view! Many expats live very comfortably here for less than $2,000 per month.

For us it is even cheaper as we get to stay here rent free in exchange for looking after a delightful home and pet. Needless to say we are planning on doing a lot more housesitting. In fact we have 4 of the next 5 months booked with housesits and will be caretaking a small resort in Belize!

placencia belize

Accommodation costs are going to be minimal over the next few months, if only we could get access to a Star Trek transporter………. Instead of “Beam me up Scotty” it would be “Two to beam to Belize, please”. The goal is to work on minimizing our transport costs as well and to get our expenses closer to our income.

We are also exploring other ways of supplementing our income…… ways that do not involve trading hours for dollars. We would love to hear your ideas and suggestions on how to do this.

We will keep you posted on our progress…. Who knows we might become professional caretakers, stock photo photographers, famous bloggers even?

About the author: Born in the UK, with what must be more than a dash of Romany blood in her veins, Yvonne loved to travel even before she met Michael. Yvonne has a varied career history, which includes several laborious years as a laboratory manager, followed by a fun few years as a scuba instructor and crew in the British Virgin Islands, and then many boring years in financial services. Her discontent along with the passing of a dear friend was the prod that led to the realisation that there was a lot more do in life. It has taken almost 40 years to come full circle to realize what Yvonne’s English teacher saw all those years ago……… Yvonne’s true passion (apart from travel) is writing and now finds herself fortunate to have the time to follow her bliss and combine the two as a blogger and travel writer. Yvonne writes most of the content and talk to lots of strangers (the best way to get the real scoop on the place). Yvonne is a “rainmaker” and makes things happen!

2 comments… add one
  • Sue

    Hi Yvonne and Mike!

    I just read your most recent blog report and I was captivated. Honestly, your current lifestyle has me rethinking what I really want to do once our kids have moved out of the house! Our youngest is 12, so we have a few years left, but, for part of the year, doing what you’re doing, from someone who has been passionate about travel since I was a little girl and worked in the travel industry for 15 years, it seems like a perfect fit! You inspire me every time I think about you and read your posts. Every chance I get, I talk about your life choice to people.. Maybe I can inspire someone else to make similar choices by connecting them with you!
    The only suggestion that I have to help you find a way to supplement your income is to use the Law of Attraction! I have a really good tool that I share with my clients, taught by Michael Losier, a Canadian author, speaker etc. on the Law of Attraction. The exercise is called Clarity Through Contrast and I’ve included the link to the worksheet and the youtube video of Michael explaining the technique. Good luck! xo Sue
    Here’s the link:
    http://www.lawofattractionbook.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=161&Itemid=64

    • Michael Bauche

      Hello Sue

      We are so glad that our posts are thought provoking.

      The purpose of writing this Blog is to inspire others to do what juices them. We think the world would be even more awesome, if more people lived a life they loved rather than one they feel obligated to live.

      We would love to share our experience with others. We can be reached thrugh the website under the About Us / Contact Us tab.

      Food for thought, you do not necessarily have to wait till the kids have left home, travel might be one of the greatest components of a young persons education.

      Thanks for the link –

      Michael & Yvonne

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