Natalie Deduck and Robson Cadore are a Brazilian couple who decided to swap the normal marriage life for an endless adventure around the world. In 2014 they sold their stuff and became full-time travelers, so far they have visited 39 countries and have no plans to stop. This week Nat and Rob share their story and introduce us to their blog Love and Road.
You started traveling not long after you got together, what was it about your first trips that gave you the travel bug?
Traveling is part of our relationship. After six months of dating, we went to Buenos Aires, Argentina to attend an electronic music festival. This first trip was based on sightseeing during the day and partying during the night. It was enough to spark our wanderlust. One year later we moved to Ireland and agreed to visit a new place every month, either in Ireland or abroad. Thanks to cheap flights with RyanAir & EasyJet we covered a good chunk of Europe.
In 2009 we returned to Brazil but funny enough it didn’t feel like home anymore. Even with some short trips around South America we could not satisfy our craving for travel. Our honeymoon in 2013 was the last straw. We visited Ukraine, Turkey and Ireland. During our stay in Istanbul we met a Canadian couple who had sold their house to buy a one-way ticket and who were planning to travel until they got tired. Nat and I looked at each other and agreed: we want to do the same.
It’s a big decision to quit your jobs, sell all your belongings and travel full time. How did you prepare for this?
Our life in Brazil was great, we used to live in a beautiful house, Natalie was running a family business and I recently been promoted. But something was missing – and it wasn’t material possessions – it was travel.
Our planning process started in September 2013. The first challenge was to discover how we could earn money while traveling and where we could go as digital nomads. We bought many books including Travel Writing 2.0, The World’s Cheapest Destinations and How to travel the world on USD 50 a day, to inspire us. The original plan was to move to Chiang Mai, Thailand in December 2014. But we got too excited with all the travel possibilities and we moved the trip up to August 2014. Then after a mental breakdown at my job, we moved it up even sooner to April 2014.
Natalie is a journalist and I love photography, so we decided that travel blogging would be a natural path for us. With this in mind, we keep educating ourselves, cut all unnecessary expenses like that mid-afternoon latte and nights out to save every penny.
Natalie set up a page on Facebook to sell our stuff – everything from our car to my surfboard. Two weeks before our trip we opened our house for a big garage sale, everything in the house had a price tag. At my dad’s house we left only six small boxes with photos and some souvenirs from previous trips. Different from other travelers we decided to not sell our house. The economy in Brazil is not that stable, so we rented the house to have another source of income.
You’ve been able to pay your living and travel expenses from your blog earnings, how do you monetize your blog?
Affiliated sales, sponsored content, press trips and social media management are paying our bills. We only work with companies that we believe are a good fit for our brand and audience. Long term relationships are what we aim for when negotiating a deal with a company. It must be a win-win-win situation, for us, for the company and for our readers.
Since we blog in two languages, English and Portuguese, we can offer specific campaigns to international companies targeting the Brazilian market. This is an advantage that has granted us many gigs.
I still remember the first 60 cents we earned and that night we spent way more on beers celebrating it!
What tips would you offer to someone who is considering a life of full-time travel?
Prepare and educate yourself, there are many resources out there to improve your skills, from books to conferences to online courses. Know what you want (and love) and set up targets. We treat our blog as a business and this includes meetings, editorial schedules, a business plan for each quarter, and a yearly budget.
And be ready for ups and downs. It happens, but its way better to discuss a problem on a sunny beach in Thailand than in an office cubicle.
What’s the top destination on your bucket list?
It’s interesting that we have quite a flexible bucket list. We love a couple of places and keep visiting them again and again, Istanbul, Bangkok, Barcelona and Koh Tao. But lately, there is something in Africa calling us. So far we visited only Morocco but we would love to spend a couple of weeks doing a safari around Kenya or Tanzania to appreciate the wildlife.
With passion and determination, Nat and Rob changed their destination and followed their dreams. Love and Road is a life project, a travel blog with inspiring ideas and travel tips, a unique way to explore the world, discover new cultures, meet new people, and write good stories. Follow their adventures at Love and Road, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube & Instagram.