Extended Travel – Preparations and To Do Lists

Seeing that some of you have been asking us what our upcoming plans were and what we’re currently up to, we thought it was time to let everyone know what we have in store.

In a few week’s time, our family is going to be on the road on an open ended adventure starting in Mexico and Belize and then jumping over to Southern Europe. Exactly how long we’ll be gone is up to debate, however it will probably be six months or longer. We’re tremendously looking forward to it and have a million and one ideas on things to do, places to see and people to visit.

The open road travel preparation

The open road

After Mexico, we’re flying into Madrid, Spain and will slowly make our way along the Mediterranean to Portugal, Morocco, Italy, Greece and Turkey. From there we don’t have a clue where we’ll end up but that’s part of the excitement.

Not only is this trip going to provide many great travel tales for this site, but it’s also going to give us our first real opportunity to work in a location free environment. Up to this point we’ve merely dabbled with a virtual workplace and up until a few months ago were still taking regular contracts. Well, that life is officially over!

Now that we have a few websites under our belt and a somewhat steady income coming in, we feel that we’re truly ready to live a life of travel and adventure. Both of the kids are on board and Micki and I are both excited to set out and call the whole world our home.

Of course, this means that right now we’re insanely busy with getting everything set up and ready for our travels. In case you want to know what we have to deal with for a trip such as this, I’ve included a rough list of things we need to take care of. Some of you might be wondering what steps someone with a house, two cars, two kids, a cat and a house full of furniture need to take to make this trip a reality. For those of you interested, read on. The rest of you, look away because it isn’t pretty. 😉

If you think that a life of travel and adventure is effortless, you might be shocked to realize that it takes a lot of work to live a life outside of the box. Of course, in our minds, the benefits far outweigh the costs. Here’s our list.

Give Notice:

  • Give notice to our landlord that we’re moving out at the end of the month
  • Cancel our gas, electricity, internet, cable and phone services
  • Set up and meet with the remote online teacher who will be looking after our sons education while we travel
  • Let the school and his teacher know our son is leaving the country
  • Call our bank and credit card companies to let them know we’re going to be on the road
  • Let healthcare know we’re going to be traveling
  • Forward all our mail to a new address

Sell or Give Away to Charity:

  • Sell one of our vehicles to limit our storage costs
  • Sell our utility trailer, car top carrier and several bulky outdoor items that we don’t want to store
  • Sell one set of couches (we have two sets), our kitchen table and chairs (too bulky), a spare bed and a few larger items that we don’t feel like leaving in storage
  • Clear out various electronics that we’ve upgraded that still have some life in them
  • Go through all our kids clothes and get rid of anything that is too small or will be if/when we return


  • Buy another laptop and a new travel router so we can both work remotely
  • Buy new luggage and repair old ones for clothes storage (this trip we’ve decided to ditch the backpacks in favor of a nice rolling set!)
  • Buy our tickets to Mexico and find a place to stay while we’re there
  • Research travel insurance companies and decide on the best plan

To Do:

  • Get all our taxes sorted out for next April (need all our receipts sorted and entered into a spreadsheet)
  • Get eye and teeth exams for the kids before we leave
  • Get International Drivers Licenses (since we hope to buy a car to tour Europe)
  • Find and rent a large local storage locker for all our belongings
  • Rent a U-Haul truck or hire movers to help put our stuff into storage
  • Clean the house once all our things are out
  • Figure out where to store our vehicle while we’re gone
  • Drive eight hours to Calgary to visit friends and family and to drop off our cat Cozzie at Micki’s moms
  • Board the plane and have a celebratory glass of wine to making our dreams happen!

There’s probably a thousand other small things that we’ll be doing as well, including going on a few small local adventures, replacing some more of our tech devices, buying a few things we’ll need for the road and getting this house and our things straightened out.

Most of it is mundane and I struggled with including it here, however I believe that sometimes you have to show both sides to living on the road. The truth is, sometimes you need to work hard to make it look like you’re hardly working.

If you can think of anything I missed on this list let me know and if you’re planning on taking an extended travel break in the near future I hope it sheds some light on what that involves.

Also, if you’re planning on leaving for an extended trip yourself, check out some of our older posts that discuss where to store your things when you travel, what to do with your pet when you’re on the road, tech we travel with, and finally how to get the most for your things on Kijiji and Craigslist.

If you’re hoping to work while you’re on the road, please check out Micki’s awesome list of 45 great jobs you can do while traveling the world for a bunch of useful ideas to get you started.

Safe travels!

6 Responses

  1. Lynne Ohalloran

    Good luck with getting everything packed up. It’s a great feeling once you are finally on that plane. I’ve just at the end of my European adventures, I travelled to all of the countries on your list … and am about to head to central America.

    I can’t wait to read about your adventures.

    • Charles Kosman

      Thanks for the words of encouragement Lynne! We just got a foot of snow outside and after spending an hour shoveling it off our driveway, getting on that plane sounds pretty good right about now!

      Good luck in Central America!

  2. nomadic translator

    “sometimes you need to work hard to make it look like you’re hardly working”

    ^^ well said! This is exciting. I wish you the best of luck and fun on your travels ahead! I’ll be reading 🙂

    – Maria Alexandra

    • Charles Kosman

      Kathryn, every time we take off for an extended trip we always question whether it’s worth all the work. I guess we’ll be finding out next week but every other time it has always been a resounding HELL YES!!!

      To be honest, right now we’re seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and the vast majority of our list is already complete. The past few weeks have flown by and I can’t believe we’ll be on our way next weekend. Not looking forward to moving our stuff into storage however we found a local company with awesome rates that are going to do the vast majority of the grunt work for us! In a few weeks, when we’re sitting on the beach drinking margaritas, these past few months of insanity will quickly be forgotten and then we’ll only have 6 months of travels to look forward to.


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