First things first: Buy the flight

As long as I’ve been doing this travel thing, I’ve kept a running list of places I want to visit… and the list is always growing. That list generally includes boutique hotels, cafés and exotic new cities I haven’t visited yet. To an extent, I’m always planning ahead for my next trip. So what takes a trip from brainstorm to actual reality?

When I buy the flight.

Flights are generally the most expensive purchase on an international trip, and they drive all your other travel plans. These days, there are a phenomenal amount of online resources dedicated to buying cheap flights, and many of them offer similar features. However, I tend to be brand loyal… and my flight search engine and research tool of choice has always been Kayak. I like Kayak because the interface is clean and easy to use on a computer, tablet or phone. Most importantly, Kayak offers a plethora of awesome (and free) features that will tell you everything you need to know about your flight… and when it comes to saving as much money as possible on an international flight, knowledge is power. Continue reading “First things first: Buy the flight”

This Nashville Life

This past May, I ended up accidentally finding a job in Nashville, TN (despite repeated attempts to escape). Unfortunately, I found that job more than a month after I’d already given notice that I’d be moving out of my Nashville apartment (but hey, such is life). Now, I’ve been working at the new job just over 3 months, and I finally moved back into a brand new Nashville apartment last weekend.

Needless to say, it is time for some life updates. Continue reading “This Nashville Life”

Brexit, the U.S. Election and “The Way It Used to Be”

If you know me well, you know what I’ve been doing since the Brexit vote: reading every article, watching every video and listening to every podcast that I can get my hands on.

Needless to say, I’m worried.

I’m worried because London — the city where I eventually want to attend graduate school, the city I credit with my love of travel, one of my favorite cities in the world — may never be the same again after this vote. Continue reading “Brexit, the U.S. Election and “The Way It Used to Be””

Planning a trip to Europe on a week’s notice

Just a few short months ago, I worked on a team that stayed so busy it was difficult to get even a day of vacation time approved. As an incurable world traveler, I felt a bit like I was being suffocated: I didn’t see a light at the end of the busy season that would result in me or anyone on my team being able to get a consecutive week of vacation days, and my brand new passport’s complete lack of stamps was keeping me awake at night.

When the time came to prepare to start my new job in Nashville, I knew that I would need to work for several months there prior to taking any big trips abroad (to learn the new position and also not be that girl who pawns her work off on teammates and jets off to Europe before anyone even knows her name).

So I did what any sane globetrotter in my position would do: I put in 2 weeks notice at work and planned my start date at the new job for 3 and a half weeks out.

Continue reading “Planning a trip to Europe on a week’s notice”

A Year of Failure (and My Decision to Stay in Nashville)

Over the past year, I’ve made a lot of plans. Whether I was planning to move to Australia on a working holiday visa, heading to Europe for a 3 month backpacking trip or attending my dream graduate school in London, what all my plans had in common is that I was DEFINITELY leaving my hometown of Nashville, TN.

As the title of this post may suggest…. things didn’t exactly work out as planned.

It is time for an explanation. Like most true stories, this one isn’t all fun and games… but like the best stories, it does start with once upon a time (and also has a happy ending!) Ultimately, I hope that I can provide encouragement to friends, family and readers who have supported me over the past year with some truth about failure. And flexibility. And what the (long) road to achieving dreams really looks like. Continue reading “A Year of Failure (and My Decision to Stay in Nashville)”

Balancing Travel and a Career

For the past 8 years, I’ve been balancing my love of travel with college and then with a career in finance. For the past 3 years in particular, I’ve travelled internationally and domestically using just my weekends and allotted vacation days away from the 8 to 5 cubicle. While balancing travel and a career may seem daunting (especially for my readers working for American companies that have yet to embrace the European take on annual vacation days), it is all about focused planning. Continue reading “Balancing Travel and a Career”