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Presenter: The best part of doing so many interviews, by far, is the opportunity to meet and connect with people in person. I was fortunate enough to meet up with David Dean three times this year. His inspiring travel experience is a perfect example of what all of us can do if we set our minds to making the world a better place. Good afternoon, David.
David: Good afternoon.
Presenter: In this interview, you were going to provide some details on your travel lifestyle, and how you earn a living, right?
David: Yeah, if you don’t mind.
Presenter: Of course we don’t. First of all, tell us about yourself.
David: I was born and grew up in New Zealand. Graduated with a History/Political Science Degree, and fell into working in IT. At the age of 22, I left for the UK, living and working there for three years while developing a travel addiction every chance I got. For several years after that, I tried to juggle my career with regular travel stints, failing miserable to achieve the balance I desired. Finally, a little over a year ago I left my office job for the final time, in favor of a life on the road.
Presenter: How did your travel lifestyle begin?
David: As I mentioned, I started travelling just after graduation, and am still doing it now. So I guess, on and off, I’ve been doing this for 15 years. I’ve spent a lot of time on Europe, Southeast Asia, and Australia, with shorter periods in North America and Africa. I used to base myself in New Zealand and Australia between travel stints. I now don’t have a base anywhere.
Presenter: After travelling for so long, what do you like and dislike about being on the road so much?
David: Constant movement is exhilarating for a while, and rapidly draining thereafter. I find it important to stop regularly, for weeks – if not longer – to recharge and relax. Staying in touch with friends and family back home is tough, as is saying goodbye whenever you leave somewhere. And, inevitably, you’ll lose some people from your life along the way. I miss my little nephew in particular. Having said all that, the upsides are amazing. I never have to be in a routine I don’t want to be in. And I don’t know for one day to the next which direction life is going to take me. I see amazing things and meet incredible people as a matter of course. I love almost all of the work I do, and rapidly change things when I don’t. Overall, I absolutely love this life.
Presenter: How much does it cost to travel like you do?
David: As a general rule, I budget an average of around two thousand dollars per month, which includes a small buffer for unexpected costs. Note that this is averaged out over a long period of time to cover the fact that I might spend six months in Southeast Asia, where I’m not spending a thousand dollars each month. But then I’ll fly to Europe and spend a lot more there. I haven’t sat down and worked out my exact costs for the last year, but I’m pretty sure I’m within budget. It has helped that I am travelling with my girlfriend, who I met a few days after leaving Australia, so we can share certain costs. And also, that we’ve been able to arrange a few sponsorships here and there, to save money.
Presenter: Have you had any major medical issues or other problems during your travels?
David: I’ve never had any major medical issues, just the odd infection or stomach problem that I could get anywhere. I try to keep interactions with police and border guards as infrequent and brief as possible, and have never gotten into any real trouble during any of my dealings with them. Long may that last.
Presenter: Thank you David.
3. Which of the following is TRUE about David’s younger years?
3) He started working in Information Technology.
4. Why did David give up his job?
2) He decided that he liked traveling better.
5. What does David say about the location of his regular base in between travels?
3) He doesn’t have one.
6. Which of the following does David NOT like about his travels?
1) Losing connections with certain people.
7. What does David say about his typical travel budget?
2) He tries to keep money for unplanned expenses.
8. Why is David’s girlfriend’s company helpful in terms of finances?
2) They are able to split some costs.
9. Which of the following traveling problems does David NOT mention as a one he had experienced?
2) A virus related illness.