This is a fairly crazy life change we’re about to embark on. Selling our home and most of our possessions to travel the world with our kids.
Our plan is to Slow Travel across the world, and come back to our U.S. Home Base each summer for a few months.
This means spending a few months in each destination in order to really get to know and understand the culture and live like locals. We are amazed at the families who Fast Travel, spending just a week or two in each city before moving to the next, but that is not for us.
When we leave the US, our first destination will be Chiang Mai, Thailand for approximately 3-6 months.
Chiang Mai, Thailand is about as far away from our home in the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. as possible. 8550 miles to be exact. So why did we choose Chiang Mai first?
There are three particular reasons:
Chiang Mai is a Mecca for the Digital Nomad community. For reasons like visa flexibility and fast and reliable internet infrastructure, Chiang Mai has become a hub for nomadic travelers who make a living using their laptop, smartphone, and internet. A big part of our plan is to develop location independent income streams online to supplement our new lifestyle. We are not independently wealthy, we need to supplement our savings with some income.
If you were starting a tech company in the 1990’s, you would most surely go to Silicon Valley! There is some inherent value in simply being around others who share your goals and dreams. It should not be hard to meet others who share our same goals and aspirations in Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai (and all of Thailand really) is a very low cost of living area of the world. We will expect our monthly living expenses in Chiang Mai to cost less than $3000, and that should be living like kings. Since our plan is to ramp up our income streams over time, it only makes sense to make sure our first destinations are very affordable.
Here are some current prices in Chiang Mai for reference:
- 3 BR House Rental – 750USD
- Unlimited Data Plan – 25USD
- One Hour Massage – 5USD
- Restaurant Meal for Family of 5 – $20USD
Within the FiRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) community, this is called Geographic Arbitrage. This is also a topic that Tim Ferris covers in The Four Hour Workweek. If we can earn US Dollars and spend Thai Baht, then we are #winning!
We believe that knowing and understanding Asia will be important for our children in their lifetime. It is hardly debatable that Asia will be an economic powerhouse in our children’s generation. No matter what path they choose in life, knowing and understanding Asian culture and norms will certainly be an asset that will give them a “leg up” on their peers.
Jim Rogers, a famous American billionaire investor moved his entire family to Singapore in 2007, when his children were very young. He wanted to ensure they learned Mandarin.
Don’t get us wrong, we love the U.S. but the writing is on the wall when it comes to economic growth into the 21st century. We’re sure that Thailand will not be the last Asian stop on our adventure!