Traveling Tips

Seven Years Out

Seven Years Out – A Self Examination

Posted by | Quality of Life, Traveling Tips | 4 Comments

If you had asked me seven years ago what I would be doing with my life, I wouldn’t have had a clue. In 2007, I was struggling to keep my construction company afloat after the economic crisis wiped the construction industry off the map in Colorado and across the nation. It was all I could do just to keep food on the table while I watched my income dry up.

Fast-forward to the present, and I’m finishing up my seventh year abroad and I’ve gone way beyond what I ever thought was possible. Read More

A Better Life For Half The Price

Frugal Living Abroad – A Better Life For Half The Price

Posted by | Live Like a Local, Mexico, Negotiation, Quality of Life, Traveling Tips | 4 Comments

It was confusing as hell when I was at TBEX a few weeks back, because there happen to be two of us named Tim who live in Mexico. Myself, obviously, but for those of you weren’t aware of it, renowned travel writer Tim Leffel also happens to be based out of Mexico, although he’s far more north and west of where we are in Palenque. He currently lives in Guanajuato with his family.

Along with being in the industry for well over a decade and authoring the World’s Cheapest Destinations book as well as running the associated blog, he also heads Perceptive Travel. Earlier in 2013, he and I got to talking in emails and Skype about a few things related to living in Mexico and the whole “cutting your cost of living into a fraction of what it was in the U.S.”.  Read More

Mexican Vendors

Avoiding The Gringo Tax – Local Living In Mexico

Posted by | Live Like a Local, Mexico, Traveling Tips | 10 Comments

There are two ways to live in Mexico: like a local, and like a foreigner. The first will see you enjoying the bounties of a low cost of living and an easy pace of life (throw away your watch!), while the latter will see you getting ripped off at every turn, paying three to four times the actual cost of everything, otherwise known as paying the “gringo tax”.

Thankfully, there’s an easy way to avoid getting nailed by these fees, and it simply requires you to shed your fear of foreign cultures, learn a little bit of Spanish, and dare to cross over to the world of immersion travel. Read More

Talking with Clients

Adventures in Living Abroad – Customer Service

Posted by | culture, Live Like a Local, Traveling Tips | 17 Comments

If there’s one thing I can say for my home country, it’s that customer service is, for the most part, such that you leave feeling as though you “won” the encounter. This is largely because of all the lawsuits and sue-happy freaks who will descend on you if you don’t cater to their every whim, and while it has created a “friendly” service environment where the staff are always smiling and helpful (for the most part), customer service around the world varies. By a lot. As you begin to explore other countries around the world, you’ll find yourself coming up against the good, the bad, and the downright horrific. You either learn to roll with the punches, or go home crying.   Read More