In ‘Today’s Traveler’ I’ll introduce you to a world traveler. Get to know them, learn what makes them tick and why they love to travel. Meet Dave and Vicky, the traveling couple behind A Couple Travelers. Having spent 2 years in the working world, they exchanged their briefcases for backpacks, dress shoes for sandals, and their beds for sleeping bags. Setting out in September 2012 they embarked on a 2 year journey across Asia and Europe. Not only blogging about their travel adventures, they also share their food adventures through their websites Traveling Through Food and Avocado Pesto.
1. Have your travels helped you create your own meaning of the word ‘travel?’ If so, what have you come up with?
Travel is something we always want to be a part of our lives. It’s not about going some place exotic as much as it is about doing something a little different – making exploring a new part of the city you live in or meeting someone new. It’s about exploration, plain and simple. There’s plenty of traveling to be done in your own backyard, I think.
2. Photography, web design and film editing can be difficult to learn; how has learning these skills helped enhance your blog for your readers and help with your other online businesses?
When we first started blogging I put a lot of work into the web design. It was a great opportunity to learn more about programming and website design and make the blog look attractive. I knew once we got on the road, I wouldn’t want to be dealing with it, so I spent many nights, weeks, and even months tweaking it until we were finally satisfied. Vicky works on her photography constantly and has made major improvements in the last few years, particularly on her food blog. If you look at her old photos compared with her new ones, it’s literally night and day. We don’t do a lot with filming, maybe less than we should, but it can be really tedious to do it right, perhaps more so than the other two. Overall, these are great investments if you’re looking in sharpening your freelance skills and impressing readers at the same time.
3. What’s been your best volunteering experience while traveling and do you plan to do more as your trip continues?
We definitely plan to do more volunteering throughout the trip and our lives. Maybe our best one was volunteering in Yangshuo, China where we taught English to students. I think this really stood out because China was such a difficult country to crack, but we finally got to meet some locals by volunteering and get more immersed and the culture as well as get some burning questions answered.
4. What’s been the best/worst ethnic food you guys have eaten and what’s been the most fun to learn to cook?
We’ve been have a blast tasting different food in Asia as well as taking numerous cooking classes all over the continent. The best ethnic food is definitely sushi in Japan, it’s just so fresh! Japanese food in general is fantastic. The worst has got to be the spicey stewed chicken feet we tried in Korea (accidentally). You could taste the ligaments! Still, Chinese food in general has been the worst. Vicky’s favorite cooking is Thai food – hands down.
5. Is there one experience from your travels that you will never forget?
I think there are many, to be honest. There is no one that I can pinpoint as the penultimate experience. It’s simply the people we’ve met and interacted with such as Couchsurfing in Japan, dancing in Peoples’ park in Chengdu China, and many, many more.
6. What is one thing you’ve learned while on the road that really stands out? (about yourself, a city or a culture)
I think about ourselves we’ve learned that when we put our minds to something, we can really make it happen. We’re much more confident people in life and in work and are very willing to attempt new projects and approach new people even if we’re skeptical of the outcome.
7. Do you have a favorite book, movie or playlist you guys can’t travel without?
We have very different tastes on all of these things, and while there isn’t anything we can’t travel without, we’ve definitely had some favorites since we’ve been on the road. For me, 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris has really inspired me to read and think more about my life’s goals.
8. If you could travel with one person, from the past or present, who would it be?
We’re never good at answering these types of questions. The honest answer is a family member – a mom, dad, or sibling. Not that interesting, I know.
We’re heading to Europe this summer, first stop France! We’re going to rent a car and will head to Switzerland, Germany, Austria, etc. I still think America ranks in the top for us for permanent living. It’s not perfect but it’s definitely a great country.
10. Any travel tips/advice for future travelers with the desire to explore?
Be bold. Meet people, approach people, start conversations, with anyone, everyone that you can. Get out of your comfort zone and make the most of every moment – it flies fast.
Visit Dave and Vicky’s site: A Couple Travelers
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