Ask Me Anything (#1): FAQ’s, Solo Travel, + My Dream Destination

Ever since I took the leap to travel around the world, I get a lot of questions about what I do, how I do it, and everything in between, so I wanted to start a series where I could answer all of y’alls burning questions about my life in one place! I am hoping to do more of these in the future, but for now, I wanted to cover some frequently asked questions that I receive, well, frequently! If you have any other questions, please feel free to shoot me an email or message me on Instagram and I will be more than happy to answer your question and maybe even spark a conversation!

 

Want to know more about me? Check out these pages!

 


 

What Is Your Dream Destination/Vacation?

The one destination that comes to mind whenever I think about this question is one that will challenge me as a traveler and be a monumental moment in my journey: Peru. I remember reading about Macchu Picchu during a reading quiz in sixth grade and it has fascinated me ever since. It’s a place of wonder and mystery and the thought of seeing it for myself seems beyond anything I could ever imagine for myself.

Ideally, I would want to spend around two to three weeks here, maybe a month, to explore. I would take a week to acclimate to the elevation, explore Cusco and the lost city, go sandboarding, and then I would head out on an eight-day, seven-night hike through the rainbow mountains and finish the Inca trail with the majestic, mountainous view that is Macchu Picchu. I know that the hike here isn’t a cakewalk so I would be stoked to challenge myself physically and mentally and to see how far I can push my body. Afterward, I plan on resting for a bit because I know that I would be exhausted from the previous week, but I would like to wander around the city a bit, dive into some local eats, edit photos, and relish in the rest of my trip. I am not sure when this trip will happen for me, but I have been considering heavily in these last few months. Who knows; maybe it’ll be my next destination?

 

Where Was Your Favorite Stop And Would You Do It Again?

When I first answered this question, The Philippines took the gold medal, but Iceland crept in and took that spot almost immediately! Iceland was a very special trip to me, even though I spent a pretty penny traveling there, but I was already expecting that. The landscape is unbelievable, truly. There was even a time where I was sleeping in my tent and I heard these birds singing above me and I honestly started crying because it was so beautiful. There were so many places that I didn’t get to see simply because I wanted to be as safe as possible, but I would 100% go back next week if I could.

 

How Do You Decide Where To Go Next?

Overall, I feel like I don’t personally choose my next location, but rather, the location chooses me. I look at it like this: yes, I would LOVE to go to Italy, but it is not the place that I feel like I am supposed to be right now. A lot of the places that I envision or dream about going to have to fit in like a puzzle piece for me to fully commit to traveling there. Most of the time, I have no clue where I am headed next and one day I wake up and I just know. Sometimes this calls for last-minute trips and sometimes it doesn’t, but I like traveling that way a lot better. Other than that, there are a couple of things that I keep in mind when I am browsing places: price, location, safety, and the amount of time that I have to spend. I really want to write a blog post more about this topic since there is a lot that goes into my researching process, so stay tuned and I’ll be sure to link it here when it’s up!

 

Do You Always Take A Suitcase With You On The Plane Or Just A Carry On?

99% of the time you’ll never catch me with a suitcase because I really just prefer traveling with a backpack. I use my Osprey Farview 40L backpack when I am able to pack lighter/take less, AKA traveling to the tropics, but I have been using my Osprey Eja 58L for camping trips, hiking trips, and other trips where the weather is on the colder side, like Iceland.

As for the carry-on aspect of it, I’ll take either one of those two backpacks and sometimes I’ll check the 40L or take it as a carry-on. All the airlines that I have flown on didn’t have extra baggage fees, but in the event that there was, I am able to take the 40L as a carry-on also, but not the 58L.

Basically, if you see me at the airport, you’re going to see me, my WANDRD Prvke Backpack, and either my 40L or 58L bag.

 

Does It Scare You To Travel Alone?

Scary? No. Exhilarating? Yes!

 

Why Aren’t You Going To College?

I get this question at work, at dinner, in public, in my sleep, and anytime that my age or direction in life gets brought up. A long time ago, this was a hard question for me because I was so unsure, but answer ultimately dwindles down to the fact that I didn’t have the money or a good enough reason to attend. The college life, whatever that really means, just wasn’t the pull that I felt for my plans after graduation. I tried to be excited about decorating a dorm and joining a sorority, but I always knew that it wasn’t the right path for me. I was following photographers and influencers that were traveling the world and getting paid to do it and I KNEW that this was the life I’ve always wanted. I fell in love with photography as a young girl and I would print out my own National Geographic coloring pages from around the world. I was not meant to sit in a desk surrounded by cream-colored walls. I was meant to be out there, everywhere; in all the places that would have passed me by had I not believed in myself or my passions.

This is not to say that my path specifically is for everyone, because it’s not. Part of the reason why I started What Do You Sea was to help people travel more, travel longer, and to pursue their wildest dreams and endeavors, whatever those may be. College wasn’t, and isn’t for me, and that’s okay. And if you pursued college and are figuring out that it isn’t for you, too, then I hope you have the courage to rewrite your story.

 

What Websites Do You Use For Cheap Flights?

I tend to always shop around whenever I am looking at flights, but the main ones that I use are Kiwi, Google Flights, Scott’s Cheap Flights, and some others on my Travel Resources Page that are guaranteed to get you the best prices. I really haven’t perfected the art of getting the absolute cheapest flights every time I travel, but I have saved hundreds of dollars by using these websites. The true golden nugget, however, is Scott’s Cheap Flights. It’s $40/year service and you get the most recent flight updates and best flight deals out of your home airport. Luckily I fly out of the DFW Airport which has heaps of deals all the time, but it’s common for there to be >$500 flights to Europe ALL. THE. TIME. out of major and international airports. If you need a play-by-play, start with getting flight updates from Scott’s Cheap Flights, search up flights with Kiwi, then Google Flights, then the ITA Matrix, then the rest of the options!

 

How Do You Afford To Travel?

With all the travel photographers and influencers you see these days, you’d think that I am able to make a living from my website, buuuuuuuuut that is extremely far from the truth. Yeah, one day I AM going to be making a living from this website, but for now, I am spending the majority of my time working at Whole Foods Market to keep myself and my travels afloat. I have been working here for around a year and every trip before this one has been funded via my savings. My senior year of high school, AKA 2017, I sold my soul to my job at the time and saved up around $15,000 for travel. I was working crazy hours, missed out on a lot, but I am glad to be at a job now where I am able to come and go as I please AND get paid better money for less stress. I am not rich. I don’t own a car. I don’t have any living expenses currently other than groceries, my phone bill, and some tools that I use to better my website. I explained in my Life At Sea: Month 6, 7, +8 Roundup that I was going to be getting my own place in North Texas, so I am going to have a car and living expense at the end of this year, but for now, I am blessed to say that I save 90% of what I make every month. I just went full time at my job, just under forty hours, and I am about to get a raise so I can proudly say that I am in a very good spot. This is the most current update as of today, September 10th, 2019, so stay tuned for some updates on this FAQ page! I am stoked for the day that I can make a living from this blog. SO. STOKED.

 


 

Have more burning questions? Head over to my contact page and shoot me an email, or feel free to message me on Instagram.

Aaren

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  • Just discovered your blog and I love it! I’m going to start travelling next year and this is giving me heaps of inspo. Love the way you write

    Bookmarked! 🙂