Retire and Travel

Travel - luggage

You can afford to retire and travel – here’s how:

 How a retired couple gave away their possessions and sold their house to travel the world.

Three years ago, retirees Lynne Martin, 73, and her husband Tim, 68, decided to live a “home-free” lifestyle in retirement. They gave away most of their possessions, sold their house in Paso Robles, Calif., found a new home for their dog and started traveling the world. Since then, they’ve lived in furnished apartments in Mexico, Argentina, Turkey, Paris, Italy, Great Britain, Ireland, Morocco, Portugal and Germany. The Martins, who each travel with a 32-inch suitcase, see themselves as “senior gypsies” who love this lifestyle because “we wanted to have the luxury of really getting to know the people,” in the countries they visit, says Lynne. She has written a book about their experiences, Home Sweet Anywhere: How We Sold Our House, Created a New Life, and Saw the World. She blogs about their travels on homefreeadventures.com. This adventurous lifestyle comes naturally for both of them. Lynne was an entrepreneur who had careers in public relations, interior design and gourmet cheese manufacturing. Tim has been a lyricist and owned an
electronics business. Both have two daughters from previous marriages, and they have seven grandchildren between them. “We’re amazingly happy doing this,” Tim says. “I love living in the United States, but I love even more seeing a new place every month or two.” They live on income from their investments (about $6,000 a month), Social Security and a small pension.

They haven’t had to touch their nest egg, which they are saving so “we can take care of ourselves for the rest of our lives and aren’t a burden to our children. We want to be responsible for our own upkeep.

lynne tim martin

Lynne and Tim Martin

But can you travel after you retire? Do you have enough energy, money, and desire?

If you have the desire and the energy – the answer is a resounding yes. The question will be how you travel and how much time and money you spend doing it. Like anything else, its going to take a plan.

First, establish your base. This may mean downsizing into a condo or small home that will be low cost to maintain so you can “lock and leave” (like a condo or town home with a home owners association). You will make a budget for your full time living, making a budget for travel is just more of the same. The only difference you make is a decision to put a travel budget right up there with housing, food, clothing and medical expenses.

The more important travel is to you, the higher it should be on your priority budget list.

The less money your have to budget the more you will be looking at creative ideas like house sharing, home exchanges, and travel on ground instead of air. Short trips and longer stays in one spot.

But if you are making travel part of your retirement goals, it is important to put in into a plan.

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