When you're sitting in class or behind your desk waiting for the clock to strike a time when you can go home it is natural that the mind can wander a bit. It isn't uncommon for your mind to wander to a vacation and even travelling the world.
What if there was a way that you could travel the world without having to raid any savings accounts and credit cards that you have to your name? The world has many hidden gems and there has to be more to life than a mundane 9 to 5.
A person that managed to make it around the world without spending much was Shantanu Starick. He wanted to travel across all seven continents without spending a dime; instead he would trade off his photography services for food and a place to stay. If he can do it so can you!
How he traded off his services
Starick realised that as a photographer he had a service that people would usually be willing to pay money for, but what if he asked for something instead of money that would directly help him with his travelling ambitions?
He would instead offer his photography services to anyone who could provide him with food, shelter and transportation. By doing this he was able to travel the world without spending a single penny. By photographing bed and breakfasts and hotels he is able to get some of the best nights sleep you can imagine.
Where has Starick been able to travel?
At the time of writing this post, Starick has been travelling for a mind-blowing 30 months and has visit countries ranging from the United States to Ecuador! He has a skill that appreciated across the world and marketing it effectively has allowed him to find a new place to travel once he completes every project.
Despite travelling for such a length of time, Starick still has countless countries to visit, which is testament to the amount of natural beauty that our planet has to offer.
An authentic experience
The trades are quite straightforward; Starick has spoken of a woman he met in New Jersey who loved to cook. He offered to take pictures of her food and kitchen for a nights sleep and some food in his belly.
Who needs a posh hotel when you can have such an authentic experience with locals? Staying in peoples homes, lodging in five-star hotels, and eating like a local allows Starick to have an experience that is unmatched.
Communicating with locals
In predominantly English speaking countries, trading off services and communicating isn't difficult for Starick. However in more remote areas where there isn't an English speaking person in sight it can be quite difficult.
China is still a country Starick needs to visit and smaller settlements wont speak English, so hell be served well by learning a few basic Chinese phrases to get him started. More than anything locals appreciate the effort behind trying to speak their language, even if you don't exactly sound like a native speaker.
You can do it too!
Honestly, with a bit of confidence, drive and a skill you can trade, you'll be able to do exactly the same as Shantanu. Whether you plan on travelling for 30 months or 30 days, there are people out there who will be willing to accommodate a trade and you can bet you'll have an authentic experience!
Start thinking about what you can do to get around the world without overpaying. With our social networks and the connectivity our world currently has, you can easily connect with and market yourself to people across the world without any effort.