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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #166  
Old 2 Oct 2008
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Originally Posted by Birdy View Post
It appears spending months/years of your life getting shot at is the best way to save money!
Joel
Yeah - the U.S. wanted to save money on the military, got rid of all but the "fighting man" (or woman), and the rest are contractors, paid for at way over-inflated prices by the U.S. taxpayer (me).

I want to scream whenever I read one of these - I'll be paying for your trip, and all the other contractors trips - for a long time.
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  #167  
Old 2 Oct 2008
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the U.S. wanted to save money on the military, got rid of all but the "fighting man" (or woman), and the rest are contractors, paid for at way over-inflated prices by the U.S. taxpayer (me).

I want to scream whenever I read one of these - I'll be paying for your trip, and all the other contractors trips - for a long time.
No need for screaming.

I've also paid extortionate amounts of tax in my career, and feel I have earned the money. I've taken very little from my country, and think I have given quite a lot back.

The money is there for anyone who is willing to go and get it. I don't set the wages, besdes, anyone who would go out there for pennies needs their head examining (imo).

Should anyone who has been in the employment of any government be denied the right to spend their hard earned cash in the best way they see fit, just because of its origin? Where does that stop, can civil servants or regular soldiers spend it how they see fit? Can binmen and local councillers?

I also worked for the Brits, so no Yank tax dollars have directly funded my trips, if that is any consolation.

Joel
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  #168  
Old 2 Oct 2008
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Originally Posted by quastdog View Post
Yeah - the U.S. wanted to save money on the military, got rid of all but the "fighting man" (or woman), and the rest are contractors, paid for at way over-inflated prices by the U.S. taxpayer (me).

I want to scream whenever I read one of these - I'll be paying for your trip, and all the other contractors trips - for a long time.
I do enjoy your little rants !!!

Hows the road treating you in deapest darkest Africa ??
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  #169  
Old 28 Oct 2008
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Angry

bored,bored,bored ! i have spent years dreaming about going off on my big trip , worked hard just paid off the mortgage , with plan,s to sell up and ride off into the sunset with not a care in the world , and what happen,s ? the bloody credit crunch / recession , nobody is buying and i am stuck here until somebody buy,s my place ! AAARRRGGGHHH , i will say it again ..AAAARRRGGGHHH ! let me outta here !
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  #170  
Old 28 Oct 2008
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Just do it

Hi up there in Glasgow. Why not just do a smaller trip? There's no need for it to be the biggest, but all trips can hit the spot. Mondo Enduro's moto is reputedly, " Time spent planning is time wasted". Linzi.
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  #171  
Old 28 Nov 2008
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I'm not a big spender and never have been, with the result that I've never been in debt other than the occasional use of my overdraft when an invoice gets paid late. So now I have some savings, but also a relationship where, while I could just go and he'd still be here when I get back, I don't want to just go and do my thing leaving him to work and pay off his debts.

So... I'm investing in his career change: he also wants to be a private contractor, but in landmine clearance. He's been saving for the course, I'm making up the shortfall so it happens sooner rather than later (bit of a dent to his manly pride there!!). Then, if all goes well, he goes off and earns lots of money in stints of a few months at a time. I get to spend that money

We're both very independent, so while he's off doing his thing I'll be doing mine, then when his contracts end we spend a few months together before starting all over again. (whilst both technically British, we both grew up abroad, so don't particularly feel we have to base ourselves here)

So kind of a mix of lots of the options mentioned: investment, danger money, keeping the other half happy while you go off and play, and marrying the money! After all, if he's going to make me worry about how many limbs he has left I figure I deserve some travelling money to take my mind off it!

Mind you, if it weren't for him I'd probably be gone by now, always been tempted by just upping and leaving and sorting things out as you go along...

Laura
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  #172  
Old 28 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by mr moto View Post
bored,bored,bored ! i have spent years dreaming about going off on my big trip , worked hard just paid off the mortgage , with plan,s to sell up and ride off into the sunset with not a care in the world , and what happen,s ? the bloody credit crunch / recession , nobody is buying and i am stuck here until somebody buy,s my place ! AAARRRGGGHHH , i will say it again ..AAAARRRGGGHHH ! let me outta here !
Home prices here have dropped about 15% or more in the last year. But RENTS are UP. Could you rent your place out? This would provide steady income while you are on the road.

I would wait this thing out before selling. It will be AT LEAST a five year long
depression. (it's way beyond a recession now). Europe may be hit harder than the USA. Good time to leave.

Best,

Patrick
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  #173  
Old 28 Nov 2008
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Foot Loose!

Hi Luara, bad joke on land mine clearing. Sorry. Can you tell me anything about this as employment please? I am ex military but difinitely not after danger for the sake of it, only fishing for any ways of making money. Thanks, Linzi.
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  #174  
Old 28 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by Laura Bennitt View Post
but also a relationship where, while I could just go and he'd still be here when I get back, I don't want to just go and do my thing leaving him to work and pay off his debts.

So... I'm investing in his career change: he also wants to be a private contractor, but in landmine clearance. He's been saving for the course, I'm making up the shortfall so it happens sooner rather than later (bit of a dent to his manly pride there!!). Then, if all goes well, he goes off and earns lots of money in stints of a few months at a time. I get to spend that money

We're both very independent, so while he's off doing his thing I'll be doing mine, then when his contracts end we spend a few months together before starting all over again. (whilst both technically British, we both grew up abroad, so don't particularly feel we have to base ourselves here)
Laura
Since your partner will be going to "strange and exotic" places to ferret out mines, why not go along? Get hold of a bike, and explore the country your in while he's getting paid? Cambodia could use his help from my own experience there.
Maybe someone should train the locals in mine extraction
instead of hiring overpaid foreigners to do a job they could do better themselves?

The so called "experts" we met (Brits, btw) there had "native" workers actually getting in up close and personal with the munitions, while they stood back the barked orders

I was in Cambodia filming in the early 90's, at one point we were very near the Angor Wat ruin .... which was shut due to ..... MINES. Some Russians (technical Advisors) had been blown up a few days before around the ruin.

We used a lesser site for our stand up piece and went back to Phenom Phen
and drank with our minders.

What a great country to bike around! I was stuck in a UNICEF Landcruiser most of the time.

Patrick
"No Sound Too Big"
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  #175  
Old 28 Nov 2008
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Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Home prices here have dropped about 15% or more in the last year. But RENTS are UP. Could you rent your place out? This would provide steady income while you are on the road.

I would wait this thing out before selling. It will be AT LEAST a five year long
depression. (it's way beyond a recession now). Europe may be hit harder than the USA. Good time to leave.

Best,

Patrick
That would make sense if only i had not spent my last penny paying off the mortgage ! i was counting on the sale of my house to cover the cost of the carnet . also you are quite right about this depression lasting for about five years . at 43 i feel that it,s now or never , especialy since a mate of mine who was only two years older than me ,recently dropped dead from a massive heart attack !!! . i am not going to wait another few year,s . I guess that i should not complain too much , when many people are struggling to keep a roof over them and their families head,s . oh well ! back to watching the horizons unlimited dvd ... the acheivable dream ... i have most of it memorised by now . back to dreaming ...
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  #176  
Old 2 Dec 2008
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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Since your partner will be going to "strange and exotic" places to ferret out mines, why not go along? Get hold of a bike, and explore the country your in while he's getting paid? Cambodia could use his help from my own experience there.

Maybe someone should train the locals in mine extraction
instead of hiring overpaid foreigners to do a job they could do better themselves?

The so called "experts" we met (Brits, btw) there had "native" workers actually getting in up close and personal with the munitions, while they stood back the barked orders

I was in Cambodia filming in the early 90's, at one point we were very near the Angor Wat ruin .... which was shut due to ..... MINES. Some Russians (technical Advisors) had been blown up a few days before around the ruin.

We used a lesser site for our stand up piece and went back to Phenom Phen
and drank with our minders.

What a great country to bike around! I was stuck in a UNICEF Landcruiser most of the time.

Patrick
"No Sound Too Big"
Also an option - I thought of setting myself a challenge, no matter where he's sent in the world I have to ride there before the contract runs out! Balkans, easy, Cambodia, hope it's a longer one! Kind of like a permanent treasure hunt...

Re use of foreigners vs locals, I think it depends where you go - the training he's off to do is in Kenya, and run by the Kenyan army, so that's a reverse situation. Problem is that training in disposal requires using explosives, so it's expensive, where training to find them doesn't, so isn't - hence why foreigners can pay their own money to train in disposal, which locals often can't afford, and charities feel they're helping out by getting locals trained to find the things. Far from ideal I agree. Although apparently now they use rats in some places, cos the rats can smell them!!

Linzi will send you a PM with the places the boyfriend found for info on it.

Laura
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  #177  
Old 2 Dec 2008
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Originally Posted by Laura Bennitt View Post
Although apparently now they use rats in some places, cos the rats can smell them!! Laura
Rats? WOW! Now that is ingenious. I thought I'd heard of this but would be fascinating to see in action! I may have found a new calling:

"Official Rat Wrangler"

B A N G! Whoops, there goes Willard!

You two have a great time in your adventures!

Patrick
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  #178  
Old 3 Dec 2008
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Apparently it's a particular breed of rat, can't remember which one. Although no-one seems quite sure how they let you know they've found a mine... Maybe it's like bees, they run around for a bit then come back and do a dance!!!
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  #179  
Old 10 Jan 2009
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Antarctic work makes great savings!

Hi everyone, I've spent all week reading this fantastic thread and have finally finished! Not that fussed about the 'how do you do it' side of things right now, as we are already 6 months into hard savings with 6 months to go to our big trip (Africa, South and Central America for at least 18 months starting July 2008). However, it's been really intersting to read how others are doing it, and see the similarities (or not) to our situation, as only a short time ago I was wondering 'how can we do it!!'

Really, a point comes in your life where you decide it's time to go and suddenly nothing else is as important anymore. You reassess what you're doing in your life and what you really need to spend money on (or really, not!), and start saving! For us, that turning point was the 2008 HUUK meet when we realised we had 12 months left working in the UK, that was plenty of time to save up and finish the bike travel preparation we'd already been doing to equip oursleves better for smaller trips, hubbie was ready for a career change, and we could celebrate 10 years since our 1999 world backpacking trip! We've been saving so well that our original thought of 6-12 months is now at least 18 months. If we didn't have a shed full of stuff stored in Oz, we wouldn't have a tie in the world and there wouldn't be an endpoint! Such is life (and yes, we're looking for ways to sort that out but it's looking unlikely...)

So my only addition was to suggest people look into Antarctic service. I know both Oz and UK employ tradespeople to work on their bases throughout the year (I'm sure USA and others do too). I've had personal experience working in the Oz Antarctic, and the tradies there got a great deal - zone tax break, no living expenses at all, usually 12 month contracts (sometimes longer). Guys I worked with were either single and making enormous pay-offs on their house loans, or had a family at home they supported and still raked it in. If you're single and wanting to save for a big world trip, it's definitely an option! It's not just tradies either (electricians, carpenters, plumbers, diesel mechanics) but also station leaders, communications officers, electronics engineers, physicists and meteorologists (they could never get enough people for this job right across Oz!). Us poor bum scientists usually go as volunteers or PhD students and make no money

Good luck to everyone who reads this and makes the jump into the uncertainty of the travelling life!

Tam (sorry for the essay)
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  #180  
Old 11 Jan 2009
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So my only addition was to suggest people look into Antarctic service. I know both Oz and UK employ tradespeople to work on their bases throughout the year (I'm sure USA and others do too). I've had personal experience working in the Oz Antarctic, and the tradies there got a great deal - zone tax break, no living expenses at all, usually 12 month contracts (sometimes longer). Guys I worked with were either single and making enormous pay-offs on their house loans, or had a family at home they supported and still raked it in. If you're single and wanting to save for a big world trip, it's definitely an option! It's not just tradies either (electricians, carpenters, plumbers, diesel mechanics) but also station leaders, communications officers, electronics engineers, physicists and meteorologists (they could never get enough people for this job right across Oz!). Us poor bum scientists usually go as volunteers or PhD students and make no money

Good luck to everyone who reads this and makes the jump into the uncertainty of the travelling life!

Tam (sorry for the essay)
That's great info. I was lucky enough to do two tours at USA's Palmer Station, Antarctica on Anvers' Island back in the 70's. After my Winter over I came home to about $30,000 saved .... that was in 1978, a lot of money back then. I'm sure pay has gone way up by now. My two tours also allowed a lot of exploring in S. America after I cashed in my pricey full fare air ticket for cash and went over land.

Lots of Brits work in the middle east and some Americans too. One friend is doing some IT work in the UAE for a US company. He'll be there two years and will make about $200,000 a year!

Much better to go to the Antarctic as a trades person rather than a science person. As Tam mentions ... Scientist and their undergrads don't get paid squat.

I was the Field Party Coordinator at Palmer Station and ran a fleet of Zodiac boats and supported the scientists doing studies on various islands near the station. Studies included Bird and Penguin, Krill, Ice fish, Phyto- Plankton, insects, seals and Whales. Also worked on two movies and supported divers.
Great job.

Now days they have TWO guys doing this job (or so I've heard (Summer only), or so I've heard. Only problem, Raytheon hold the contract to run the US stations now under US govt.'s National Science Foundation. Raytheon make missiles and other very evil secret weapons, which should all be banished from this earth. Somehow with Raytheon in charge I just don't trust anything going on there now. I would bet much of the research is now weapons related.

My last year they were already doing secret Radar projects, Upper atmospherics laser tests, and a big VLF (Very Low Frequency) experiment used in Submarine tracking/detection. (now obsolete).
So even in 1979 they were dead set on destroying paradise
and had plenty of willing toadies .... who would do anything for money.

Patrick
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