5 Questions to Megan Claire Jerrard

Also interesting for our “30 Digital Nomad Stories: How to Work Remotely and Travel the World”: Travelling as a couple. Being a digital nomad is the ultimate proof that there are no rules to life and that life is all about freedom – according to Megan and Mike. Blogging allows Megan to travel as much as she wishes. She has also successfully turned the blog into her portfolio for jobs in writing, social media, website consultancy and public speaking.

Why did you decide to begin a nomadic life and what does it mean to you?

A nomadic lifestyle to me is all about freedom. Freedom to live life as we choose and not be constrained by the “rules” of society i.e to be successful you must have a 9-5 job, have a house and children. A nomadic lifestyle is the ultimate proof that there are no rules to life. It also means freedom of movement. We are not tied down to a specific location, so we have the freedom and mobility to travel and move around as we wish.

Having established an independent career is amazing, because we can work from anywhere in the world so as long as we find an internet connection, the location isn’t important. We can pick up and take off on a whim’s notice, if we choose to, and we really love the freedom of being able to accept opportunities and not worry about having to sell a house, quit a job, or what to do with our stuff, because we have very minimal material possessions.

How do you earn an income now?

My income is now mainly from my blog Mapping Megan and my freelance writing. Money via the blog comes largely in the form of content based advertising and sponsorships (sponsored posts), and I have managed to use the blog as a portfolio of my work, to land paid freelance jobs in everything from writing, social media and website consultancy and public speaking.

What is your approximate travel budget for a year? Any tip to lower it down?

We travel for approximately $30,000 a year, though this is traveling fairly comfortably and staying in apartments and mid range hotels, often hitting fairly pricey destinations along the way.

Over the last 6 months for instance, we traveled throughout Central and South America before flying up to Europe, and did Easter island, the Galapagos and Iceland all within 4 months of each other. These are fairly expensive locations, so you could definitely travel on a lower budget if you decided to hit cheaper destinations and you’re willing to stay in hostels, campsites or even consider options for free accommodation like couchsurfing, house-sitting or home exchange.

Also, slow travel is often less expensive – instead of jetting off on long international flights every 3 days, consider spending a few weeks in each location, and planning your next destination as somewhere close-by, accessible by train, bus or car.

Megan Claire working remotely

What would you consider to be one of the best tools for becoming a Digital Nomad?

Fantastic devices and an international adapter! One of the biggest parts of being a digital nomad is being able to earn an income online, so you will need a really reliable range of devices: normally a high quality laptop, smartphone, camera (for instance, photography is a big part of our travel blog) and hard drive for storage.

Make sure you have a smartphone with a worldclock, as this will come in incredibly handy for scheduling meetings in different time zones, and make sure your phone is unlocked so you can purchase local SIM cards along the way. And of course if you travel a fair bit, an international adaptor will be your best friend so you’ll never be without power or a connection.

Do you have any advice for those starting a DN life?

Familiarize yourself with technology and applications before you leave. Learn how to use Skype, test run Google Hangouts, and learn how to schedule meetings across different timezones with Google calendar. Make sure you know the ins and outs of every application before you hit the road. It’s much easier to learn it all beforehand than trying to figure something out at that moment.

Bio

Megan is an Australian Journalist, and the founder and Senior Editor of Mapping Megan – an award-winning adventure travel blog bringing you the latest in adventure travel from all over the globe. With the main aim of inspiring others to embark on their own worldwide adventure, Megan and husband Mike believe, travel has the potential to inspire change in people, and in turn inspire change in the world.

They embraced travel as a lifestyle in 2007 and are dedicated to documenting their journey and observations through entertaining, candid articles and brilliant photography. Adrenalin junkies and incredibly active travellers, from mountain biking the most dangerous road in the world (Bolivia), to skydiving over the Swiss Alps and summiting Mt Kilimanjaro, there is no mountain too high, and no fete too extreme!

They haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on their list. You can follow their journey on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram also.