There often seems to be this big debate when it comes to traveling versus saving for your retirement. I don’t think the two have to be polar opposites. It's entirely possible to live a well crafted life that includes plenty of travel now and during the years after you stop working. Here’s how I intend to make my travel dreams come true with retirement planning, and how you can too.
This post is brought to you in partnership with Fisher Investments.
Travel Today vs. Travel Later
We’re a small family, so there’s only one child to worry about getting through university. Still, my husband and I siphon off money every month to go into the education fund for our daughter. We don’t even notice the money being peeled off, and we do the same for our retirement savings. As a mom in my 40s, retirement seems a long time away but I want to be prepared before that season of life sneaks up on me.
As a travel writer, of course I want to explore as much of the world as possible. Even though I’d love to go to China, Cancun, New Zealand and a hundred other places this year, like most families, we need to make tough choices about how we want to spend our money and time.
We prioritize our travel and come up with a manageable schedule and budget so we still feel like we’re getting out (and I have enough content for my writing outlets), without breaking the bank. There’s always a way to find affordable accommodations whether it's camping, housesitting or dormitory-type stays. For flights, we're religious about using points. Eating out is expensive, so we limit it to one meal a day when traveling. More often than not we make due with deli items from the local grocery store (washed down with some local wine, of course!).
Travel Dreams After Retirement
When we retire my husband and I want to become longterm house/pet sitters. We like to really get to know a place, and living among locals will give us a true feel for how other cultures live. The top of our list is South America. I’m particularly enamored by Argentina and I’d love to spend a good chunk of time there. Austria and Italy also rank up there for us.
And I don’t think I’ll ever truly stop working. Freelancing has taught me how to work for myself and even if I go back to the office world, I still won’t completely let my passion for travel and writing go. Freelance work (whether writing, teaching, business consulting, acting as a childcare provider or otherwise), is a wonderful source of supplemental income for people like me who love what they do and want to keep active.
10 Tips for Retirement
No doubt about it, good retirement investing can lead to fulfilling travel dreams. Here are 10 of my favorite retirement tips I learned from Fisher Investments that will lead to a happy retirement…someday!
- Living abroad may be a great retirement option, especially if you choose a country where the cost of living is lower than where you currently reside.
- Don’t ignore inflation. Factor that into your long term planning.
- Involve your children in your financial decisions at an age that feels appropriate for your family. This could help your kids manage their money better and will help you understand their wishes and goals more fully.
- Look into purchasing long term care insurance in case of serious illness, no matter your age.
- Get in the habit of conducting an annual financial audit. (St. Patrick’s Day is a good annual cue.)
- Reduce anxiety by estimating your taxes in advance and planning accordingly.
- As your retirement approaches, rather than doing just one big job, consider many small jobs (like freelance writing!).
- Travel early in your retirement. The longer you put it off, the less more likely your health and energy levels will prohibit you from fulfilling your retirement travel dreams.
- Pick your money manager carefully. Experience and expertise count for a lot, but you need to feel comfortable with them and know that they’re worthy of your trust.
- Build a cushion into your financial planning – you never know what can arise and it’s way better to have a little extra to spend, than not enough.
What are your retirement travel goals? Do you worry about being able to afford it?
A Note from The Saucy Travel Mama: Thank you to Fisher Investments for sponsoring this post. As always, my opinions are my own.