Interview with Erin and Simon from Never Ending Voyage

We continue our interview series with the couple of digital nomads from UK -

Erin and Simon from Never Ending Voyage.

 

Erin and Simon from Never Ending Voyage

Erin and Simon from Never Ending Voyage

  • Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your blog? How did you start traveling and blogging?

We are Erin and Simon a British couple who took a year off our jobs to travel around the world in 2008. We really struggled on our return to England, with the weather and the 9-5 routine and we missed being out exploring the world with every day an adventure. Simon started getting into web design at the time and we also discovered the world of digital nomads, people who could work anywhere they had an internet connection. We realized that we could do that too so we saved up, sold all of our stuff, started our travel blog Never Ending Voyage, and set off with a carry-on sized backpack each and a one way ticket to Rio de Janeiro.

Since then we’ve traveled to South and North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

  • What are the 3 best things in traveling together as a couple? Are there things that you don’t like, or would like to change?

We love travelling together, in fact it’s the only way we know to travel as we took our first backpacking trip together when we were 19. We love that we can share so many amazing experiences together, and that we always have each other, whatever goes wrong. It’s also wonderful to be able to spend so much time together rather than having to spend 35 hours a week in an office with others.

  • What are some of your interests outside of traveling?

Pretty much everything I do is related to or happens on our travels whether it’s reading books set in places we’re visiting, swimming in the sea, running on the beach, horse riding, or cooking local dishes.

Simon is an artist and a geek, he loves drawing, illustration, comics, programming, and Disney.

  • Can you name your 3 favorite places in the world so far?

It’s getting harder and harder to choose favorites, but probably India, Japan and Italy.

Erin and Simon at Wadi Rum, Jordan

Erin and Simon at Wadi Rum, Jordan

  • Can you name your 3 favorite dishes that you’ve tested in different countries so far?

We’re vegetarian so we are always on the look for vegetarian friendly dishes. Some of our favorites are the antipasti plates of grilled vegetables, cheeses and other tasty treats in Puglia, Italy; masala dosa in south India; and mezze of salads and hummus in Jordan.

  • What destination are you looking forward to the most on your next trip?

We’re definitely in Sicily for the next week and then we still haven’t decided where to go next. Africa is high on the list, especially, trekking to see gorillas in Rwanda.

  • What are the pros and cons of digital nomad lifestyle for you?

Pros: the freedom we have to go where we want, when we want and to work on what interests us; being able to spend so much time together; being able to live in amazing and diverse places; not having to deal with dull things like electricity bills and car repairs; meeting interesting people all over the world.

Cons: missing out on family events back in the UK; an irregular income; and the challenges of running your own business.

Erin & Simon at Playa del Carmen

Erin & Simon at Playa del Carmen

  • From your blog we can learn that you travel since year 2008. Do you think you will ever return to UK again or settle down in some other place in the world? If yes, where it would be?

We definitely don’t want to return to the UK and have no plans to settle down. We’d like to spend a month or a year in Italy and in San Francisco.

  • Also we know that you have started your own iPhone Apps business and successfully monetizing your blog. Can you share with our readers some tips about starting their own business and monetizing the blog?

We’re probably not the best people to give business advice! It’s been a challenge as we had no previous business experience. Our advice is to work on what you love, it might not make you the most money but you’ll be happier. And don’t give up—it takes a long time to build an income. We recommend either having your business up and running before you leave or (like we did) having a pot of savings to keep you afloat, while you grow your business. You can also live inexpensively in places like Thailand and Mexico.

Regarding blogging, don’t expect to make a lot of money from it and realize that it’s a huge amount of work. You will probably need to work solidly on it for a year or more before you make anything. It’s best to focus on producing great content and growing your audience before you start monetizing. There are different monetization strategies, but things are always changing. One of the best is to create your own product or offer a useful service to your readers.

  •  Can you give some advice to our readers, especially to couples, which want to start traveling?

Set a date when you want to leave and work towards it, even if it’s two years from now. Track everything you spend so you can create an accurate monthly budget and put as much away in savings as you can. Prioritize travel over everything else, stop buying things and going out drinking, look for ways to reduce expenses and it’s amazing how much you can save. Then buy a one way ticket to somewhere that calls you, pack a carry-on sized backpack (you really don’t need anything bigger) and go.

 

Authors Bio:

Erin and Simon from Never Ending Voyage

Erin McNeaney and Simon Fairbairn are a digital nomad couple who sold everything they owned and left the UK in March 2010. They write about their slow travels around the world and the ups and downs of life as digital nomads at NeverEndingVoyage.com, and create iOS apps that make your travels easier at VoyageTravelApps.com. Their latest app is Trail Wallet, an easy expense tracker for the iPhone.

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