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A Week In The Life of a Digital Nomad in Thailand

Cut through the B.S. and see what it is really like struggling to balance work and play as a Digital Nomad.

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Packing List for Thailand

Prepare for your travels with this backpacking list of everything that you need to bring with you to Southeast Asia…

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Top 12 Things To Do In Dallas, TX... as told by a local

Sweltering heat, 10 gallon hats, oil barrens and  cattle… This is the glamorous stereotype that has been so generously given to this city. A stereotype that isn’t entirely inaccurate but, there is a fascinating side seldom seen…

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Top Things To Do In Chiang Mai, Thailand

Resting in the cloud covered hills of Northern Thailand lies the city of Chiang Mai, the former capital of the Kingdom of Lanna. Chiang Mai is often referred to as the cultural hub of Thailand because of its…

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How To Start A Travel Blog

You’re about to embark on a journey of epic proportions. You feel a burning desire to chronicle your adventures so that the legendary flame of [insert your name here] burns on in to eternity, or maybe you just want to make a few bucks with adsense and affiliate sales. Starting a travel blog is a lot of fun and you’ll be glad that you did it when you look back on it years from now. There are two main routes you can take when starting out. You can start a free travel blog on any blogging site of your choosing or you can go the paid-route where you post on your own website. Free Travel Blog Learning how to start a travel blog is easy when you go with this option here. First, go to a site like wordpress.com or blogger.com. Sign up for your free account and choose the title of your blog. You will be given a domain name like “[yourtravelblog].wordpress.com” Enter in to the dashboard to begin construction on your site. The main advantages to this method are ease-of-use and short set up time. Another great thing about the free method is that you are instantly plugged in to a whole social network of other bloggers, and you can quickly begin to build a following. There are however, some disadvantages. WordPress owns the site, not you. Unless you pay them you can not get a domain without the “wordpress.com” in it. For example, let’s say that you want TotesAwesomeTravelBlog.com, you have the options of buying that domain or going with the free version which would be... read more

Backpacking Checklist: Essential Need-To-Know Tips For Every Backpacker

So you want to backpacking, do ya? Don’t worry. I am here to entrust in you the sacred knowledge of my travels. This backpacking checklist covers a wide variety of topics, but I made sure only to include the absolute essential things you need to know before backpacking, not just through Europe and Thailand, but ANYWHERE. I’ll provide you with a list of the top travel apps that I personally use, how to choose the best places to backpack, how to navigate banking/ATM/credit cards while traveling, a few things you need to do before leaving, the best way to book hostels, and how to decide if travel insurance is right for you. Looking for an extensive list of things to pack? Check out my blog post, Backpacking Checklist: Packing List. Top Travel Apps When I first started traveling I didn’t know the good travel apps from the bad ones. Along the way I found a lot of great ones, but there were only a few that I would use on a daily/weekly basis. Here are the absolute best travel apps that I found. Kayak – I would use this site and their app for booking flights. It is incredibly user-friendly, has a “flexible departure date” search function, and always provides you with the lowest price available. Skyscanner is another great site/app, but personally I prefer Kayak. *In case you didn’t already know, Wednesday tends to be the cheapest day of the week to fly. You’re welcome. Hostel World – Definitely the most user-friendly Hostel Booker app available. Trip Advisor –  Open up this app, type in the desired city,... read more

A Week In The Life Of A Digital Nomad In Thailand

A Week In The Life Of A Digital Nomad In Thailand I’d like to start this off by explaining that this is a bit of an unusual week for me. When I say unusual I mean that I typically have this type of week about once every 1-3 months. This is a “Travel Week” which, aside from the normal day-to-day madness, there is lots of packing, unpacking, sitting, walking, waiting, riding buses (sometimes flying), and attempting to get work done in noisey hostel dorm rooms. Day 1 10:00 am – I wake up in my apartment in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Time to get ready. I take out the trash and walk across the street to drop off my laundry. The outside of my complex. Its more of a hotel really. The top floor is reserved for people that stay one month or longer. The view from my “desk” Inside “Project: Chiang Mai” Another picture of my office 11:00 am – I’m wide awake from my daily dose of caffeine. I spend some time corresponding via email with one of my clients back home in the U.S. that I do SEO and WordPress development for. Then, I carry on with website diagnostics/analytics review, plugin updates, embedding videos, directory listings, social media updates, etc. 1:30 pm – Back to my site for the daily checklist: plugin updates, analytics review, etc. Then, a few minutes planning out the rest of my day. 2:00 pm – Reading time – Nothing preps my brain for blogging quite like caffeine and a good book. Currently near the end of “I Hope They Serve Beer In... read more

20 Things I Learned In My First 3 Months As A Digital Nomad In Southeast Asia

1.) Make Sure You Have A Location-Independent Source Of Income Set Up Before You Take Off What ever it may be, (SEO, photography, web design, consulting, etc) make sure that you have checks flowing in from work that you are doing from your laptop. Get this going before you take off or else you’ll end up back in your home town with in 3-6 months (depending on how much you saved). $1,500/month should be plenty if you are going to Thailand or Vietnam. You can scrape by in some cities on about $800/month if you live like a local.   2.) Food Poisoning Is A Very Real Thing At least for me it was in Thailand. Keep a few extra hundred dollars on hand for any emergency room visits, pharmaceuticals, and time off that you may need. Here is an entire blog post about dealing with food poisoning.   3.) Budgeting Is Very Difficult While Traveling Even if you have a daily budget everything can get screwed up when you have to buy a plane ticket. Sometimes you come across something (a tourist attraction, a souvenir, a meal, etc) that you MUST have/experience. If you say no to your desire because of your daily budget then you lose the excitement that comes from the spontaneity of travel. That spontaneity is what brought you halfway across the world in the first place. I say, follow your impulses! Follow your impulses with weekly and monthly budgets. Daily budgets don’t work. For more on this subject I highly recommend that you check out I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit... read more

18 Reasons Why You Should Spend A Weekend In Pai, Thailand

1. It Only Costs 180 Baht ($6 USD) To Get There Seriously… $6 USD for a 3 hour bus ride from Chiang Mai to Pai. That’s $12 round trip to see a whole new city. The road has a lot of sharp turns. Bring some motion sickness pills.   2. Walking Street In the center of town you have a street closed off for pedestrians. This street caters specifically to the tourist crowd. You will find tons of restaurants and bars. There is PLENTY of street food. This is also a good place to go to rent bicycles and motorbikes. Be aware, cops are always on the look out for white people on motor bikes. Be prepared with your international driver’s license or 400 baht if you get stopped.   3. Pai Canyon If you are looking for an incredible mountain view this is your place. It is completely free. Barely any hiking involved. The initial walk up the hill is quite steep but well worth it. It is a great photo opportunity.   4. Pai is 420-Friendly Cannabis is illegal in Thailand, even in Pai. However, Pai is a city that is half populated with hippies. Look for the dreadlocks, ask around a bit, and you’ll be able to find yourself some herb. There are even some bars that are 420-friendly. Just use common sense. If police confront you, you will either be arrested, ticketed, or extorted. *Any specific names of individuals or bars left in the comment section will immediately be deleted and you will be permanently banned. I am not advocating illegal drug use. I am... read more

6 Ways To Avoid Food Poisoning While Traveling

  March 2015 Chiang Mai, Thailand I was hunched over in a mosquito filled bathroom, in the early stages of a battle with food poisoning that I was clearly losing. To be honest, I don’t even know if I was in the men’s bathroom. I was told to walk around the back of the building. It was so dark I could barely see. There was some sort of concrete shed that was emanating the distinct light of a TV from some tiny windows. Attached to this concrete shed was an open door to what looked like a bathroom. The light was on. “Was this the bar’s bathroom or does this bathroom belong to the person who, I am assuming, lives in this concrete shed?”, I thought to myself.  If I remember correctly the walls were painted pink, which only added to my confusion. I unsuccessfully inspected the door and the surrounding wall for a gender label. Fuck it. I can always plead ignorance if it causes commotion. I’m a tourist… Earlier that day I had made plans to meet up with some fellow digital nomads. First, was dinner with James (founder of Live Collar Free), a Westerner but a 2 year “resident” of Chiang Mai who would impart invaluable wisdom of the inner workings of this city. We met at a comfy bistro. The a/c was cold, the patio out back was extravagant, the menu was full of Western dishes, and the seats were filled with Western customers. I felt like I was back home in Austin. I ordered the cheese fries. Halfway through the meal I realized that... read more

Top Things To Do In Chiang Mai, Thailand

Resting in the cloud covered hills of Northern Thailand lies the city of Chiang Mai, the former capital of the Kingdom of Lanna. Chiang Mai is often referred to as the cultural hub of Thailand because of its many temples, museums,  and its rich history. This metropolitan area of nearly 1 million people is frequently listed as one of the the top travel destinations in the world. Chiang Mai can be a bit overwhelming at times, especially for Westerners. When I first arrived I felt like child, having to relearn everything: roads, language, currency, customs, diet, how to get around, where to get groceries, and so on. After 2 weeks here I decided to get an apartment. Although I don’t quite consider myself a local, I certainly feel qualified to inform people about the Top Things To Do In Chiang Mai, Thailand and what to avoid, as well. A Quick Geography Lesson In order to better understand Chiang Mai it is important to understand its simple layout. In the center of Chiang Mai you have “Old City”. It is called Old City because, well, it is the oldest part of Chiang Mai. So old, in fact, that to this day it is still surrounded by a moat and a partially intact fortress wall. The fortress walls form a nearly perfect square with one wall facing North, one wall facing East, and so on. Therefore, the walls are often referred to by the direction that they are facing. For example, there is the North Wall, East Wall, South Wall, and the West Wall. Strewn across each wall are several gates... read more

Packing List for Thailand

Packing List for Thailand I have a lot of people asking me about my packing list for Thailand and the rest of Southeast Asia so I decided to compile an exact list of things that I keep in my backpacks for my travels. Keep in mind that this is just a list of things that work for my personal backpacking adventures. Some of the things I list may not work for you. You’ll just have to read, adding and subtracting things from the list to make it your own. Originally this was a tricky task for me because I was on my way to spend a few days in New York (during Snowmageddon 2015) before flying out to Bangkok, Thailand. Which is why I have gloves, a cotton poncho, a rain jacket, and a generic Northface jacket. Now that I am here in Southeast Asia (its March, by the way) I really don’t see any need for the fleece jacket and the cotton poncho. Obviously, the gloves are useless here. So, I need to make the decision as to whether I should send the useless items back or just give them away to a fellow backpacker in order to avoid any shipping fees. The poncho I definitely will not be giving away simply because I got it in Mexico and it is a fucking sweet poncho. What I’m getting at here is that you need to think very carefully about what you are packing because you will incur shipping costs if you decide that you want to send items home. Another recommendation… if you aren’t sure if you’ll need... read more

Top 12 Things To Do in Dallas, TX… as told by a local

  Sweltering heat, 10 gallon hats, oil barrens and  cattle… This is the glamorous stereotype that has been so generously given to this city. A stereotype that isn’t entirely inaccurate but, there is a fascinating side seldom seen by the ever present awe-struck tourist. You know. The one wearing a camera like a necklace, and an American flag t-shirt, one size too small, that eloquently shrink wraps the curves of his gut. When I occasionally muster the strength to lift my hangover-stricken body from the couch I look out the window to my backyard, now a small tundra turned to swamp by a pitiful sheet of half-melted snow. Yes, it snows in Texas… sort-of… frozen rain mostly… then, comes the ice, which plunges the rednecks on these streets in to a city wide chaos. Cars become pinballs on the highway, bouncing off pylons… and each other, in a cringe worthy struggle to maintain course on their way to North Park Mall or What-A-Burger. I’ve experienced the entire spectrum that is Dallas. I have to admit, some of the “tourist traps” are pretty fucking cool but there is more to it. If a friend were to come visit me from out of town this is the exact checklist that I would go through. Here it is, the Top 12 Things To Do in Dallas, TX, as written by a local, a 26 year native, that’s been through thick and thin with this city. #12 – Two-Stepping at Cowboys Red River I know my friends are going to give me a lot of shit for listing this but, I can’t think... read more

About Me

Garrett vs World - About Me

Travel Enthusiast. Writer. Internet Marketing Specialist. WordPress Developer. Entrepreneur. Digital Nomad. Read my life story here.