Ready to kick off your shoes and hit the road traveling full-time? There are many nomads in Australia who are doing this and having a ball. Sometimes a little preparation can be beneficial.
If you spend a little time considering your options you may find you can travel with fewer worries.
I made some big decisions when I began my journey and these may help you to start your journey without baggage.
- Have you considered selling your house or downsizing in order to become a nomad?
- What do I do with my ‘stuff’?
- What type of mobile accommodation is available for nomads?
- Can I use my household products in my new travel accommodation?
- What should I take for traveling long term?
- Think about those who have become accidental nomads
- Are you ready for adventure?
Have you considered selling your house or downsizing in order to become a nomad?
I sold my house and have spoken to others in the same situation and most agree that without the house there is so much more peace of mind.
No more worrying about whether someone may realize it is vacant and take advantage. No more worrying about whether a storm may have damaged windows or the roof.
But best of all, no more going home regularly to mow the lawn and catch up with the dusting.
If you sell your home, you will reduce your expenses considerably.
Properties are expensive with rates, insurance, maintenance, mortgage fees, and gardening costs not to mention day-to-day running costs of cleaning, water, and replacement of furniture and white goods.
If you decide to travel for many years, the expense of owning a property can be a big consideration. I traveled without a house for 12 years. I will get another soon as I plan to now travel for shorter periods of time, a few months at a time.
I am not suggesting that you blow the money from selling a home. You should always seek financial advice and invest your money so that you have choices if you ever wish to buy or rent again.
What do I do with my ‘stuff’?
If you decide to sell or downsize there will be a lot of decisions to make about your possessions.
What to keep, sell, give away, or throw out. No one can make the decision for you but I believe the best thought process is:
“If you have not used it for a year or more and it is not valuable or seriously sentimental you can live without it.“
If you won’t need it, it is not likely to be useful, or you feel you may get a new home sometime in the near future then prepare to dispose of it.
I chose to sell everything that was of any value. I then used the money to buy items I needed for my motorhome. This included items like solar panels, a portable toilet, and bedding.
My motor home needed fitting out and the sale of my possessions gave me the extra funds required.
I elected to pay for a storage shed for 12 months to house my major appliances just in case I decided to give up the lifestyle and return home.
What type of mobile accommodation is available for nomads?
There are many options when it comes to hitting the road and taking your new home with you. Car or bike with a tent, camper trailer, caravan, motor home, gooseneck (5th wheeler), truck, or bus.
As we are all individuals, we need to select the style that suits us and will take us where we want to venture.
If you attend a caravan & camping show in your town or capital city, you will find an extensive range of products to consider both for accommodation and accessories.
During Covid, many events were canceled but as we move forward they will continue to provide valuable information just as they have in the past.
There are major state associations and camping shows along with private show promoters that have events throughout the states. These can be found on Google.
Take advantage of these events and discover the choices available before making your final decision.
Can I use my household products in my new travel accommodation?
In most cases, yes. Some household items can be used if they are small enough.
Pots and pans, cutlery, and clothing are required but some larger items like big refrigerators and washing machines are probably going to be too large for a smaller environment.
You also need to take into consideration the power sources available to you and whether you plan to stay in camping spots with power, or camp in the bush.
As mentioned earlier, I suggest that you store any oversize items that you may need in case you find you do not like the world of full-time travel.
I kept items such as our bed, washing machine, refrigerator, freezer, extra linen, kitchen appliances, and crockery. A year later, I gave them away.
What should I take for traveling long term?
Depending upon your choice of accommodation, you will always be limited by the amount of space available to carry items.
Some accommodation types may come with pre-installed utilities such as a stove and ablutions, others do not.
I recommend that you consider the essentials and decide whether you are prepared to be very basic, or have a little comfort :
- food including staples and condiments
- food storage containers
- water storage
- shower or bathing options
- hot water
- heating and cooling
- stove or other cooking options
- crockery, cutlery, cooking utensils, pots, and pans
- clothing for all climates you are likely to experience
- outdoor seating and shade
- linen and bedding
- First aid and medicines
- toiletries and personal care products
- all-purpose household cleaner, dishwashing, and laundry products
- entertainment requirements (TV, computer, books, hobby items, etc).
In addition to the above essentials, if you are unsure of whether you should take items ask yourself ‘What would happen if this item broke tomorrow?’ If you would probably do without it, then don’t bother taking it.
If you don’t make some tough decisions at the beginning, you will end up with so much ‘stuff’ that you will become overwhelmed.
Living in a small space takes organization and you do need to downsize your whole lifestyle, not just your accommodation.
I created an in-depth guide in my post, What to take on the road. This will help you with the essentials.
Think about those who have become accidental nomads
I have met many people who have become accidental nomads due to circumstances beyond their control.
If these people can overcome adversity, then those of us who choose to become nomads are very fortunate that we live in a country where there are so many options.
I met a lady living in her car, with her teenage daughter, as her home and contents were lost in a fire a few days after the insurance policy was canceled.
She was working part-time during the day and spent her evenings parked in different locations around town.
After a couple of weeks, she was able to move into a caravan park which gave her power, water, bathroom, laundry, and camp kitchen facilities. Her car remained their sleeping and storage vehicle, but life was a little more comfortable.
I encountered an unemployed man living in his car in a free camp (donation requested). The camp had a toilet, shower, and tap water. This was in the summer and he was saving money to move elsewhere so he could find work.
On another occasion, I met a man living in a tent in a state forest. The only facilities available were a toilet and a shelter with a roof and picnic tables to where he could move his tent in bad weather.
He had a pushbike and rode to town daily to collect food and water. He was saving up for a car so that he had all-weather shelter and could move on.
No matter how hard things get, you can take a positive stand and make the most of any situation.
Australia is a wonderful place to live the nomadic lifestyle whether forced into it or by choice. As long as we have access to food and shelter we can survive.
All the above people moved on with their lives and they may have traveled a little slower than most of us would like to, but they still overcame obstacles and adventured through life.
Are you ready for adventure?
Many people across Australia move around slowly, staying in free or low-cost camping areas making every day an adventure. There are some things you may need to consider like the elements which may affect the time it takes to do the big lap, if that is the way you elect to start.
These people don’t need expensive clothes or toys. They eat, have shelter, enjoy themselves, and live every day to the full.
If you don’t have an income stream or are unlikely to find casual work as you go, perhaps you can do what I am doing.
Save some money and find a way to earn an income through the Internet.
Do you have an experience in life that you can share to help others? Maybe you would like to set up a website, start a blog, start a YouTube channel, or produce some products that can be sold as you travel. There are opportunities everywhere, you just need to look outside the box.
I had a business that allowed me to travel and sell goods and had a website to complement it. I started this blog and made money through affiliate marketing, yet found I made many mistakes along the way.
I am always learning from my mistakes and will not give up on my long-term adventure into the future.
This blog is about my life, blogging, and adventure full-time.
Are you limited in time? How long to travel around Australia may help with perspective.
What is stopping you from taking the plunge?
Are you ready to kick back and enjoy the wonderful opportunities available? Just writing this post has got my feet twitching.
Join me and countless others that have taken a leap of faith, or are about to do so.
Have a great life.