(Closed) career break?

posted 5 years ago in Career
Post # 3
Member
2450 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

i think most people don’t do this because we depend on our paychecks each week so that we don’t end up starving to death under a bridge by the river.

 

srsly… your question comes across almost like this:

Post # 5
Member
2450 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

@gb4:  i’m not saying you inherited it, but you seem quite far removed from people who are not in the same financial situation as you. You ask why more people don’t take that much time off and travel the world and be free as a bird… as if people choose not to take time off, when in reality we can’t.

Post # 6
Member
724 posts
Busy bee

@rosworms:  Agreed.  I think the only ‘stigma’ about it in North America is when people do it that live outside their means or expect their parents to pay for it when they’re young.  The reason more people don’t do it is because very very few can afford to take 7 months to travel around the world.  I doubt you’ll find anyone that would say “take half a year off to travel to exotic places? BLEH, sounds horrible, who would ever do that?”  

I know you didn’t mean to sound offensive just…understand that you’re very fortunate (and hard working, yes, but also fortunate) and maybe rephrase your question to just ask if there are any others with similar experience as to why everyone else can’t afford to travel too?

Post # 7
Member
966 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

Don’t worry. People here have been getting really offended over really small things lately. You clearly meant no harm.

If you’re talking about Europe, it’s  much easier to travel there cheaply than in the states, and often safer. Hostels in Europe are not hostels in the states. o_O and trains are much more prevalent as well. Airline costs are a big bite. But once you get to somewhere, especially somewhere like Thailand, it’s not so bad. Most people just can’t afford to do it for 7 months, and still have money for a normal lifestyle here (a house, two cars, college bills, regular bills, etc). That’s my problem. Save it all, or risk some and travel? 

You didn’t mention how you traveled for 7 months? Did you stay at lux hotels, hostels, or with friends/family? Bike, train, fly, all?  May I ask how you were able to do it? 7 months of traveling seems like a dream… may I ask approximate costs and what you did/where you went? Did you guys pay for all of it? Sorry if it’s too many questions. I posted something similar about some traveling versus none, and someone called me entitled and got snotty when I menioned I’d worked 10 years between 16 and 26, when it was completely relevant to my issue. She was very snarky about it and said “no one is impressed” or something of that nature. I was like uh… wtf. Anyway, I wish my fiance and I could do this! If you could share how, even in a pm, I’d greatly appreciate the details =)

Post # 8
Member
1750 posts
Buzzing bee

@gb4:  I was off work for almost 1.5 years. It allowed me to do some soul searching, volunteering and to truly think about what I wanted to do with my career. After my career break I went back to my previous industry. I stayed there for 6 months before getting a position at a nonprofit. Working to help the less fortunate fulfills me. I don’t think I would have ever went after my true passion in life as aggressive as I did had I not been on a hiatus. My hiatus was not planned but having enough in savings to support myself without changing my lifestyle was a blessing. Most people don’t take the time off work because they can’t afford it. Most people can’t afford to miss one paycheck without getting behind in their obligations. Be happy that you were able to have such a wonderful experience. I sooo wanted to come live in Europe a few months during my hiatus but my mom wasn’t having it!

Post # 9
Member
741 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I think it is a valid question, no need to get touchy about it…

My nieghbor did that a few years ago. She wasn’t rich by any means as she worked as a secretary, she just made it a huge priority that it was something she wanted in her life. She worked for a few years to save up, and took off for Aisa for a year where she could live on the beach for less than 5 euros a day. In an ideal world I’d love to do that, but there are other things I’ve made the decision to spend my money on. 

Post # 10
Member
1079 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@gb4: Hello!  My Fiance and I taught English in South Korea for a year after we were both finished with undergrad.  While that year was trying for many reasons, I’d love to be able to spend time overseas again.  I’m hoping we’ll be able to do something in the next few years whether it is some extended travel time or relocating somewhere for a bit. 

I can’t say that I really noticed a whole lot of impact on my career, especially since I hadn’t had any post-college working experience before working in Korea.  While I wouldn’t say that it effected me negatively, employers definitely didn’t seem particularly interested in my overseas employment.  They were more interested in whether I had experience here. 

Where are you living now?  I’m curious and would love to live vicariously through you.  🙂

Post # 12
Member
1130 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

My friend is doing this. She actually made only around $40K before she took off, so she wasn’t rich. But she had sold her house, her car, etc, paid off her student loans, had no credit card debt, so she had no monthly expenses. She lives very cheaply, and she has experienced more than I ever will (I am married with a one year old daughter); my traveling days are over. I admit I get jealous sometimes, but that kind of career uncertainty would bother me. I admittedly am the farthest thing from a free spirit, and the idea of not having a job would terrify me.

Post # 13
Member
1471 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I think it is an interesting discussion. I had planned ot do this and was saving, but somehow ended up with a fiance and an immmigraiton process instead. Far less glamorous! I do live fairly “internationally”, and I live in a VERY international community (I’m a foreigner myself :p). A few of my friends have done this type of thing.

I’m not American, so I can’t comment on the American side, but I can speak in general.

I think there are definately two groups of people. The first are those who genuinly can’t afford to travel. If you are supporting a child on minimum wage, without any qualifications, a career break is not possible. For a lot of people however, it’s about priorities. I’m not saying that it’s the right decision for everyone, but absolutely possible.

Most of my friends who do it/ have done it tend to do one of two things. They either do what I do, and get jobs abroad. Working holiday programmes and jobs that offer sponsorship (frequently English teaching) enable visas and money making. In my situation, if I search, it tends to cost under $500 for me to get almost anywhere in SE or East Asia. Frequently it is much cheaper than that. It is often cheaper for me to visit another country than somewhere else in Japan. A few years ago I took a summer job in Germany. That enabled me to travel for a few months around Europe, Asia and the US, on 4 months of savings from my NZ teacher salary and the money I made in Germany.

The other thing people do is save hard, and spend little when they travel. I know of people who choose to work 50-60 hours a week. Again, not everyone can do this, if they have family to support etc, but a lot can. They then live very, very frugally when saving, and very frugally on the road. Typically, you can backpack arouund the world for a year $10-20K per person. If it is a goal, you can typically obtain that money. These people often (but not always by any means) don’t have much else in their savings, don’t own property and don’t drive anything particularly flash.

I’m not discussing the wisdom of the idea, just sharing how it is reasonable for someone who isn’t made of money to do these things.

 

The topic ‘career break?’ is closed to new replies.

Find Amazing Vendors