How I financially planned my 6-month sabbatical in Southeast Asia

Photo courtesy of Desiree Thomas.

In total, Nelson spent approximately CA$16,000 (US$12,000) for all costs associated with his six-month Liberty leave. This included flights, accommodations (hotels and Airbnb), food, excursions, and any travel gear she purchased for the trip.

“Could I have spent much less if I had been more economical? Absolutely. However, I decided this would be the time of my life and did what I wanted (within reason). I avoided hostels, ate what I wanted and took tours with local guides in every country. I regret nothing.”

Throughout the trip, Nelson learned that she was truly capable of anything and everything. Her abundance mindset has increased dramatically.

“It takes tenacity, dedication and resilience to achieve what I’ve done. I’ve had some extremely high peaks like meeting inspiring people, seeing some of the most beautiful scenery in the world and learning to fully enjoy my I’ve also had my share of downs, like nearly missed flights, moments of loneliness, and severe food poisoning with no one around to support me.

“No matter what challenges the travel gods threw at me on the trip, I always picked myself up and continued on my journey. Whenever I’m too scared to do something now, I’m reminded that I ‘ve traveled to 6 Southeast Asian countries completely solo on a self-funded, self-planned trip and suddenly remember that I’m that daughter. I feel the fear and I do it anyway because I can do hard things.

Nelson is currently planning his Liberty Leave 2.0 – this time in Europe for a year. She strongly recommends anyone who is in a position to embark on a sabbatical to take advantage of the opportunity and do so.

“It’s absolutely a privilege that not everyone has access to, but if the stars align and you can make it happen, do it as soon as possible. You won’t regret it. If you want to dive into long-term travel before you fully commit, working remotely while traveling abroad is a good first step. I’m writing an e-book on how to plan the perfect “workcation” and you can to inscribe here to be notified when it falls.

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