Is Traveling a Hobby? Sometimes it is, and sometimes not
Traveling the world is one of the most desired items on the bucket list for a vast majority of individuals. Why wouldn’t it be? You get to see things you have never seen. You get to learn cultures you never knew existed and you get to experience something not many are fortunate enough to experience.
I’ve been very fortunate to travel the world as much as I have thus far into my life. Along the way, I’ve visited some beautiful and remarkable cities and countries. I have no regrets. I have however had questions along the way.
One of those questions for me not too long ago was simple. Is traveling a hobby? Here’s what I can tell you on the subject from my point of view.
So, is traveling a hobby? It depends. For some, yes. Traveling is a hobby. For others, traveling is a lifestyle for a select few, traveling is a product of circumstances due to work or other situations.
Hang with me for just a minute here. I get that three potential ways I’ve listed for how traveling can be classified may a little bit gray or confusing at the moment, but if you stick around for just a moment, I’ll explain in greater detail exactly what I’m referring to and how it works.
When Traveling Would Be Considered a Hobby
First, many potential reasons exist for why an individual would travel to several countries or embark on the journey of exploring the world. Like I stated before, it could be your lifestyle, and it could just be something that you attempt to do as much as possible when time permits.
In most situations, if you are the kind of person who travels when time permits and maybe sees 1 country per year or less, I’d classify traveling as a hobby at this point. You are not quite at the level where we can classify it as anything else.
You Have No Permanent Home or Residence
Let’s assume you don’t fall into the category previously mentioned. Many individuals have entirely given up the right and luxury of having a permanent home or a place to return to. They have downsized belongings and only have the necessities that are carried along from destination to destination.
When this is the situation, I’d venture to say that your traveling habits are much more than a hobby and you have taken the leap of faith to turn traveling into a lifestyle. This method of traveling is gaining popularity and at alarming rates. Seriously. It’s getting crazy.
More and more people are selling their homes or doing other non-conventional styles of living such as purchasing tiny homes to save money and only allow enough space for the basics. When you reach this point, is when I believe your hobby has turned into your new lifestyle.
I also commend you for this step. Making this step can be scary but I can’t imagine a world we would live in where this would ever lead to any regret. Too many beautiful places and experiences await you, and you can only live once and see so much staying within your comfortable boundaries.
A simpler explanation. Staying within the confines of your home state or country is only going to provide you with so much in life and not seeing the rest of the world is a mistake if you ask me.
Remote Work and The Evolution of Technology
This is one of the core reasons I believe the trend has shifted so dramatically with individuals deciding to pull the trigger on making traveling the world a reality instead of a dream that never comes to fruition.
In the olden days, we didn’t have a choice. It was blood sweat and tears and working at a specific location to earn our paychecks to place food on the table for our families.
Well, those days are dead my friend. In fact, I’d argue to say that just as money can be made if not more while working remotely with the power of technology and wireless internet capabilities. I mean really, let’s think about this for a moment.
First, how many jobs even have all employees report to a physical location anymore? No, you can’t use construction or law enforcement as an example to counter me on this idea. If you do. I’d argue that even jobs in these professions have individuals working remotely.
Maybe not as many but I guarantee there are more than you may believe.
My point is simple. Many jobs now exist that if you have a laptop or electronic device capable of connecting to the internet, your still 100% capable of placing money into your bank at alarming rates if you know what you’re doing.
You Would Be Crazy Not Explore This Idea
It’s been said that roughly 3.9 million Americans are now freelancing or earning money on the go without ever reporting to a physical job location. So, what does this mean?
Well, first I suppose it depends on how much money you are making and what you can afford. Some individuals make just enough to travel the world or find cheap destinations at discounted prices and hawk the internet until these deals become available.
Not a bad approach by any means. If it allows you to travel the world and provide an income, I’m all for it.
Others, well they don’t even make enough to do this. They may make only enough to pay the internet bill and afford the luxury of never reporting to a boss again or having someone breathing down their necks. Also, not a bad thing if you ask me. People do what they must do and what works for them.
No harm, no foul here.
However, a third option is also possible. Some individuals run very lucrative businesses from the power of being mobile and leveraging technology and the internet. Many multi-million-dollar companies are running in this fashion, and the number continues to grow.
The Freedom Doors Are Now Open for Business
Once you believe that what I’m telling you is true, it becomes easy to see how traveling can quickly become a lifestyle and not a hobby. If you have the financial means to afford this luxury and count and track your dollars, it’s very possible in the economy we live in today, to make this happen.
Using Blogging as An Example
What your reading right now is known as a blog. It’s my blog and no it’s not providing the luxury to travel to the most exotic places on the earth yet without a worry in mind, but I am one of many. One of many bloggers.
Many bloggers find great success traveling the world as a lifestyle bouncing from coffee shop to coffee shop in countries and cities they have never seen or possibly even heard of before. In fact, that’s where some of the most popular travel blogs are born.
It would be very tough for me to blog on traveling with any consistency or regular schedule if I hadn’t made the final decision to take traveling from a hobby to a lifestyle. I mean, what would I have done? Posted 1 blog per year when my job gave me a few days off?
Sorry, it just wasn’t for me. Look, I’m not trying to convince you to jump onboard the traveling lifestyle train. I’m merely trying to inform and educate you that this world exists, and it is growing at staggering rates as I mentioned before.
The Traveling Freelancers Actually Save Companies Money
Think of this from another angle. Not only do individuals now get to turn traveling into a lifestyle, the companies allowing this are now saving more money than ever before. They don’t have to pay for all the real estate at this point to provide office space.
It also shifts the tax burden to the governments considering most expenses individuals incur working on the go will be written off as deductions against their income. It’s basically a win-win situation for both parties if the employee can maintain a solid work ethic.
When Is Traveling Nothing Except a Hobby
Okay so we have covered at great length when traveling can easily be considered a lifestyle but when is it nothing more than a hobby. Well, several situations exist where this could be the case. Let’s dive into some of these examples.
Traveling for Your Favorite Sporting Events
When you are on the go and enjoying the NFL, MLB or other professional sporting events it is considered traveling for sure but loving sports and attending the games certainly falls into the hobby category. If this is the case and you want to the World Cup soccer game and travel to do so than traveling is a just a bi-product of another hobby.
This could also be the case for other hobbies that would permit or even need travel as part of the package. Hobbies such as hunting, fishing or even photography could be examples of hobbies that create travel to partake in actively.
At this point, you are still traveling strictly due to a hobby, and it would not be considered a lifestyle.
Traveling for Work
This also wouldn’t be considered a lifestyle but would fall into a category of its own. This is forced travel even if you get to see some exotic, beautiful places with no expenses taken on your end of the deal.
Some professions such as selling insurance will offer up to 4-5 exotic trips fully paid based on production and sales made throughout the year. This form of travel is nothing more than a by-product of your hard efforts during the working hours.
It takes more for the traveling to finally reach a point where you can shift the classification from hobby to a lifestyle.
At the End of The Day. It Doesn’t Matter
When it all boils down, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter which classification you fall into. Traveling is something that should be incorporated into a life no matter which style you prefer. Is the lifestyle form of traveling unique, exotic and almost carries a risky, dangerous feel to it? Absolutely.
This lifestyle would be a life surely to remember. More importantly, however, traveling alone is enough to improve the quality of life and take you to places you have never seen before.
Putting It All Together. What Kind of Traveler Will You Be?
Traveling as a lifestyle is something not for the faint of heart and should be something that has created a burning desire within you to do. Giving up your current lifestyle to pursue this extreme end is something that takes a lot of courage and careful planning to complete.
It also cost a lot of money, so it’s important to consider every angle and make sure you are up for the challenge. It can create a life that you probably will never achieve in any other fashion, but it doesn’t come without cost.
Many people are under the impression that it’s all fun, excitement and new beginnings but it’s also a lot of airports, picking a new home frequently and learning to adapt on the fly. Whether you travel for work, as a hobby or a lifestyle it doesn’t matter. Just be sure to understand what you're missing out on by not traveling at all.