15 Essential Digital Nomads Tools

Today there are more remote workers than ever before in history. People are leaving behind their traditional office jobs in search of adventure, and they’re bringing their work with them. Thankfully, technology is making travel easier. The rise of innovative apps is helping travelers streamline their life on the road. As a full-time traveler myself, I balance my time between exploring local culture and working on a start-up. In this article, I’ll share my favorite budget friendly digital nomad tools for saving time and money while increasing productivity.

1. Trover App

This app is a like Instagram for travelers. It’s a place where travelers can upload and share their favorite destinations with other nomads. The beautiful photo galleries are the perfect way to discover new destinations. What makes Trover unique is the huge network of travelers that connect on the app to discuss their favorite places. You can exchange stories and tips and even create lists of places you want to explore. Trover is the best travel app for gaining inspiration from fellow travelers. If you suffer from wanderlust, this digital nomad tool just might be the cure.

2. Hip Camp

An Airbnb for campsites, this new travel app is transforming the way travelers think about accommodation. For starters, it opens up a whole new avenue that hotels and boutiques haven’t really given much credence to – the great outdoors. This website is quintessential for anyone who enjoys spending a night under the stars with a bonfire by their side. What I like most about this website is I can easily search for land to camp on all around the USA. Hip Camp opens up unique accommodation opportunities that would otherwise not be available. This cool new website enables landowners to keep their space filled with nature, instead of selling or building on top of it. For camping enthusiasts, it’s a dream come true. Campers can pitch their teepees and re-wild in the grand elegance of Napa, Yosemite, Sequoia, Lake Tahoe, and many other locations in all fifty states.

3. Nomad Budget App

Nomad Budget is a personal finance app for travelers. If you’re tired of using currency converters and spreadsheets, you’re not alone. Created by travelers Nathan & Adriana, Nomad Budget is a travel expense tracker that helps you keep track of your spending while abroad and save money. It allows you to create a target daily budget and watches your spending so you don’t have to. Best of all, it works completely offline and has over 150 foreign currencies to choose from. It works seamlessly in every country. Foreign expenses are instantly converted into your home currency using the latest conversion rate. Beautiful charts display your spending by category so you know exactly how much you’re spending on food, accommodation, and sightseeing. Nomad Budget is the perfect budgeting app if you’re going on a trip and you don’t want to overspend.

4. Traveller Stash

Stay in the know with the latest travel technology. This website was built by travel entrepreneurs who wanted to give back to the community. Inspired by the concept of Startup Stash, Traveller Stash curates the very best of trending travel technology and delivers it in one clear-cut space. This website offers sixty top travel resources to help fellow explorers plan their upcoming trips with ease. The key idea here is to make traveling more convenient. Indexed resources include everything from flight hacks to package handling services and backpacker tips. Digital nomads and vacationers alike can now find the best tools and resources for an upcoming trip on Traveller Stash.

5. Trip Advisor

Create epic bucket lists for things to do in new cities. Trip Advisor is a megalithic resource for travel reviews and recommendations. With an ever growing user-base comprised of knowledgeable expats and locals, travelers can find answers to pretty much any question they have about a particular destination. Their comprehensive list of attractions around the world helps itinerants discover interesting sites, tours, and experiences. What I love most about Trip Advisor is the ability to create custom bucket lists for an upcoming trip. I can save all my sightseeing ideas and restaurant picks in one place and then come back to it later. A notable feature is being able to see all of my favorite spots displayed neatly on a map. I can easily pair sightseeing with nearby dining which makes itinerary planning a cinch.

6. Trello

Stay organized with your tasks and team members. Trello enables entrepreneurs to create a fluid workflow that inevitably increases productivity. This is a life-changing application. As someone who has issues staying focused and prioritizing my tasks, this app has completely transformed the way I plan my day. The intuitive design allows me to effortlessly create multiple to-do lists. Users have the ability to create teams and share tasks with their team members. Permission levels allow users to maintain control over project management, delegate priorities according to color tags, apply due dates, and archive completed tasks for accountability. Notable features include being able to drag-and-drop tasks, move lists around, and automatically splices chunk text into separate tasks. This is a life-changing app. After discovering the capabilities of Trello, it has become indispensable to my workflow.

7. Slack

The easiest way to communicate and share files with team members. Slack is a messenger application that works on your desktop or on your phone. So what makes Slack different from other messenger apps? Founded by tech guru Stewart Butterfield, Slack is a cloud-based tool for team collaboration. When team members want to communicate with one another, they can organize their conversations with custom “channels” that are either open (for transparency) or private (for sensitive topics). Team members can easily drag and drop all types of files including PDFs, images, and spreadsheets. You can even video call your co-workers or set up a digital conference! All downloads, files, and direct messages are cleverly stored for later so that users can search for archived conversations. What I love most about Slack is the ability to preview URL links and GIFs in my messenger window. Instead of sifting through a thousand emails with hard to find attachments, I can just open Slack and have all my business communications in one spot. In summary, Slack has reinvented the way business professionals communicate online with their associates.

8. Sky Scanner

Find the cheapest flights to your favorite destinations. Sky Scanner compares millions of flights from various airlines and offers the least expensive flights from point A to B. Whenever I need to book a flight, I head to this website to find the best deals. Some clever features include being able to type in “Everywhere” into your destination. It allows you to see your options in a multitude of countries and cities along with pricing information. Sky Scanner doesn’t charge any hidden fees, but instead links you directly with the airline to book your ticket. Sky Scanner also has convenient filtering which allows you to sort the results by duration, lowest price, departure time, and even by a specific airline.

Here’s a tip for saving even more money! Once you find a great flight on Sky Scanner, you can then go directly to the website of that particular airline to see if your ticket will be cheaper.

9. Flux

Turn off that pesky blue light on your computer so you can go to bed. If you’re having a difficult time sleeping, the light radiating off your computer screen might be to blame. Studies have shown that blue light can have an adverse effect for sleep patterns. Flux takes care of this issue by eliminating this blue light so that your body can carry out its natural resting cycle without interference. After downloading flux, you can tell the application what time you plan to wake up and it will automatically adjust the lights on your computer. As evening approaches, the light on your screen gradually adjusts to a reddish orange glow. This altered lighting has a drowsy effect which physiologically motivates the user to stop using their computer and go to sleep. Flux is great for digital nomads who need that extra push to turn off their electrical devices late at night.

10. Moom

Easily manage multiple browser windows on your desktop. Creating the perfect workspace is one of the most important ways in which to increase productivity. After-all, having a messy desktop can instill feelings of cluttered thoughts, confusion, and serve as the ultimate distraction playground. Moom helps you to manage all of your windows so you can work better. It’s like playing Tetris with your browser windows. You can easily size them down and position them on your screen with just one click. This is a very valuable tool for programmers who need to have multiple applications open at once.

11. Disk Inventory X

Running out of space on your laptop is a problem almost everyone runs into at some point. Luckily, Disk Inventory X is the solution to a filled hard drive. Developed by a Ph.D student who became obsessed with the idea of visually graphing his hard drive inventory, this app was created to help others save time and energy. Disk Inventory X shows you the files sizes of various folders and applications with helpful “tree-maps” graphics. It allows you to know exactly where your biggest files are on your computer for easy clean up. It sorts your folders by size so you can instantly see which files are taking up the most space. It quickly analyzes any hard drive and provides a visual report within seconds. If your computer has freezing issues, Disk Inventory X can save the day!

12. Work From

Finding the perfect coffee shop to work from while traveling can be quite a challenge. Work From is a comprehensive list of the best coffee shops to work from around the world. This wonderful website collects user-aggregated data in order to suggest cafes in every city around the world. Their motto is “scouted by real humans in over 1,250 Cities.” The requirements are simple. Good wifi and power outlets. This database of work-friendly locations is growing every day and includes bars as well as co-working spaces. The Work From blog also offers inspiration for remote workers and they even have a Slack chat community (#Workfrom) where freelancers can meet potential employers. Work From is the best way for digital nomads to find public places to work from at the drop of a dime.

13. On The Grid

Described as a neighborhood guide for explorers, On The Grid is a curated list of local gems and secret spots put together by creative designers. It’s a place where locals can give their top food & shopping recommendations. Anyone can become a curator and recommend cool spots for visitors to check out on their next trip to far away destinations. Metropolitan areas are cleverly broken up into separate neighborhood guides and the list of cities is growing every day. Los Angeles alone has thirty-eight neighborhood lists! On The Grid has garnered international appeal for its straight-forward approach and lack of pretension. With exotic cities such as Beirut, Bogotá, and Brooklyn, it’s no wonder culture seekers are flocking to this website for the best insider tips of where to dine and lounge.

14. UpWork

UpWork is the largest online workplace for freelancers. It is an incredible platform for digital nomads and creative professionals, but it is especially valuable for programmers. With a specialization in the tech industry, UpWork is transforming the way in which people view remote work. Earning an income while traveling sounds like a dream, but UpWork is turning that into a reality for many. It connects a thriving community of talented developers, designers, and consultants with one another to create the perfect team. Users can either post a job and search for a candidate or hire an expert. The best part is that all payments are handled through their website. UpWork is the go-to place for finding a gig and funding your budget travel adventures.

15. Nord VPN

Did you know Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all blocked in China? It’s sad but true. Many different countries around the world enforce regional restrictions in order to limit what their citizens can see on the internet. The easiest way to avoid digital censorship while surfing the web is to use a “virtual private network” (VPN) service. Nord VPN is one of the best online encryption and privacy applications out there. With one thousand servers to choose from in over sixty countries, Nord VPN enables its users to override any regional restrictions. Nord VPN allows you to have a safe wifi so you can easily check your bank statements and shop online in communal hotspots. They even boast a no-log policy which is pretty neat. Lastly, they even use a 2048-bit SSL encryption system. This means your data will remain private, even when you use your laptop in the most public spaces.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed this overview of the top digital nomad tools for budget conscious travelers. As an itinerant, these apps have had a beneficial impact on my way of life. Working abroad has become easier with the aid of these helpful gizmos. I can now travel non-stop, spend less money, sleep more, locate cheap lodging, and find flight deals – all on the go. The world for digital nomads is becoming more convenient and this is just the beginning.

3 Ways to Get a Second Passport and 2 Countries to Get It From Quickly

Second passports, and the legal right to exist as a citizen of more than one country, are not a common, every day topic. You might encounter it in the plot of a movie about international financial crime, or in a novel about secret government agents spying on one another.

In fact, although it is not generally known, the legal right to dual citizenship, and with it the right to obtain and employ a second passport, is available to millions of people worldwide.

While it’s impossible to know exactly how many U.S. citizens have acquired a second passport, experts put the number of U.S. citizens who either hold or legally are entitled to hold a second passport at 40 million.

These are the three main routes to acquiring a second passport:

  • By place of birth, where the laws of the country in which child is born make them a citizen automatically, as in the U.S., where the 14th Amendment does this. This principle is expanded by what is known as “sanguinity,” blood relationship, citizenship based on that of one or both parents, or even grandparents in some countries, such as Ireland and Italy. This relationship is perhaps the easiest and fastest route to a second passport.
  • By official naturalization, which usually involves a specific period of prior residence in the country. Almost all countries have a route for foreigners to obtain permanent residence, linked to marriage, a job, starting a business, or other commitment to the country. On average, this means living in the country for five years.
  • By purchasing economic citizenship, which involves a large investment in the country or payment of a substantial fee. Some countries offer this in exchange for investment in real estate, starting a business, or payment to the government. Among these countries are St. Kitts and Nevis, Dominica, Cyprus, and Malta. These citizenships involve an extensive due diligence process and investigation.

But for low cost and quick action, there are two countries that stand out, based on the ease of acquiring immediate residence:

  • The Republic of Panama has a special Pensionado law that welcomes foreigners as new residents, especially retirees. Another law grants immediate residence, and later citizenship, to foreign investors who create new businesses and jobs. Panama has a sound banking system, a stable government, and enjoys one of Latin America’s strongest and fastest growing economies.
  • Another good option is Uruguay, an open and free South American country that welcomes new residents. Here any foreign visitor can apply for permanent residence and remain while the application is processed. An established local residence and proof of self-support of about $1,500 a month minimum is needed. Citizenship may be granted after three years, (two years for retirees), during which you must spend most, but not all, of your time there.

These are a few examples of the ways and means of obtaining a second passport, and how you may qualify. At the moment, there are 195 countries in the world. Any one of these may be just the kind of place for which you have been looking.

Is It Legal for a U.S. Citizen to Hold Two Passports?

There are many good reasons to acquire dual citizenship, and with it, a second passport. But just what does the phrase “dual citizenship” mean? Dual nationality or dual citizenship simply means that a person legally is a citizen of two countries at the same time, qualified and recognized as such under each nation’s law. It also means that such a person has, and can use, two different official national passports.

If you are a U.S. citizen, or a permanent resident alien (green card holder) an important point to know is that under U.S. law, having a second passport does not jeopardize your citizenship. It is fully legal for a U.S. citizen to hold two, or even more, citizenships, based on rulings by the Supreme Court.

While legally acquiring and using a foreign passport does not endanger U.S. citizenship, some countries do not permit their citizens to hold dual citizenship or a passport from another nation. This was the case in the U.S. until 1967, when the Supreme Court upheld the right of citizens to hold a second, foreign passport. Before that time, the official rule was that a person acquiring second nationality automatically lost U.S. citizenship, even though that rule was loosely enforced.

Dual citizenship may result automatically. The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees that a child born within the U.S. is a U.S. citizen. A child born in a foreign country to a U.S. citizen parent becomes both a U.S. citizen and a citizen of the country where he or she is born (if that country has such a provision). In the latter instance, the child must usually formally confirm acceptance of that second birth citizenship before their 18th birthday.

Dual status may result from operation of law, as when a U.S. citizen acquires foreign citizenship by marriage to a spouse from another nation, or a foreign person naturalized as a new U.S. citizen retains the citizenship of their country of birth.

While it’s impossible to know exactly how many Americans have acquired another passport, experts put the number of U.S. citizens who either hold, or legally are entitled to hold, a second passport at over 40 million.

The point is that dual citizenship is no longer a novelty, but an accepted legal status you might seriously consider for yourself.

Your qualification for another, second nation’s passport—one that comes with fewer restrictive strings attached—can serve as your passport to greater freedom. It can be your key to a whole new world of free movement, foreign residence, expanded international investment, greater flexibility, and even adventure.

Wintering on the French Riviera For $3000 a Month

French Riviera conjures up images of royal and ultra rich people in Nice, France – a place often considered synonymous with dazzling wealth and a lavish, champagne-soaked lifestyle. There’s good reason for this reputation. From the 19th century until about World War II, this was the legendary winter playground of well-to do expats. The likes of Hemingway, Picasso, and Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald cavorted here during the roaring ’20s. And it’s only about 30 minutes from the high-stakes gambling dens of Monte Carlo, made famous in James Bond films.

But despite its glamorous history and prime location on the French Riviera, Nice is an unexpectedly accessible and affordable town. I saw nearly as many young couples and families as retirees.

Ironically, you’ll probably get the best value out of Nice by following in the footsteps of those well-heeled expats of old and wintering there. Expect plenty of bright blue skies, glorious sunshine, temperatures in the low 50s F, and rents that can be half the cost of summer rates. In fact, you could winter in Nice for as little as $3,200 a month.

If you’re going to live in Nice for only a few months, it makes sense to live in the central parts of the city to make the most of your time. Central Nice neighborhoods are all close to the beach and offer a variety of shops, restaurants, cafés, museums, and movie theaters. It’s also easy (and cheap) to get around in central Nice, as the city is highly walkable and has an extensive tramway and bus system that only costs $11.20 for 10 tickets.

Naturally, being close to the beach and most major activities has its price, but it’s not nearly as high as you might think. In fact, glamorous Nice is less expensive and offers much better value than Paris. You can rent a small furnished apartment in a central location, often with all utilities included, for anywhere between $720 and $1,400 a month.

Once you’ve taken care of rent, most other details are gravy. Restaurant prices run the gamut, from swish five-star affairs to no-frills spots with great soul-filling traditional foods. During my visit, I had a delicious lunch at Chez René Socca, dining on socca, a kind of chickpea pancake, and fried zucchini beignets, with a glass of white wine. The total came to about $9.

In other places, a large Niçoise salad costs about $12 and aubergine farcie (eggplant stuffed with chopped meat and garlic), another local specialty, costs about $8. If you’re in the mood for a heartier meal, mid-range restaurants offer three-course set menus for anywhere from $20 to $45. (Try the romantic Côté Marais, where you can get a first-rate, three-course dinner for just $37—an amazing value.)

Of course, by having an apartment in Nice, you’ll save plenty by preparing your own meals. You may be justifiably tempted to shop at the legendary Cours Saleya, a jam-packed outdoor market offering a mouth-watering selection of fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses, and other products. But many locals believe  that prices are inflated at this lovely but tourist-infused market. Costs are far more reasonable at the sprawling, mostly French Marché de la Libération (Liberation Market), only a few tram stops from Old Town.

How I Broke Free Using 5 Lessons From The 4-Hour Work Week

In the summer of 2007 I read a review of a little known book (at that time) The 4-hour Work Week. I was fascinated with the core concept espoused in the book and ordered it through Amazon and read it in one seating.

Then came an opportunity for me to get an early retirement from my company where I was working for 10 years. I took the early retirement package.

I cashed on a few more opportunities that I was pursuing as an independent business operator and realized close to 300K in my checking account. I had a valuable skill set through an MS degree in Computer Science,  10 years of work experience and a few independent projects.

For the first time I realized that I could create salable assets using my skills. I truly realized financial freedom . I felt like, at last, I broke free from the chain that was holding me to a location and 9-5 jobs.

The book had profound impact on my lifestyle, I how I take jobs, residence, and work.  I will discuss a few brilliant lesson learned from the book if you ever want to break free from your routine life

1. The 80/20 Principle – 80% Output is the Result of 20% Input

I was a 6-Sigma black belt and I knew the principle of 80/20 or Pareto’s Principle. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, Vilfredo Pareto, the Italian economist concluded that 80% of the wealth and income was produced and possessed by 20% of the population.  But he also found the mathematical formula was applicable outside of economics as well. In fact, it could be found just about everywhere. For example,

  • 80% of Pareto’s garden peas were produced by 20% of the peapods he had planted.
  • 80% of company profits come from 20% of the products and customers.
  • 80% of your complaints come from 20% of your customers.

You could say 80% of the output is a result of 20% of the input.  Tim suggests that you can eliminate waste in your life by 80/20 ing everything.  I started doing at least once a month, preferable twice, to really see where I’m able to optimize my time, energy, money etc.  This is, by far, one of the best things to do to really discover where you should put your focus. I also realized that

1. Doing something unimportant does not make it important.

2. Requiring a lot of time does not make a task important. What you do is exponentially more important than how you do it. While efficiency is important, it is useless unless applied to the right things.

2. Deferred Life Plan is Bad Idea

Most people will work 40 years to get a nice retirement to live a dream life.  They will plan to defer whatever they want to a future when they don’t have to work for money anymore. This is normal. People have been doing this since the advent of white collar jobs.

For most people this is impossible unless you inherit your wealthy parents’ money  without participating in your father’s business.  For the first time in history Tim Ferriss showed us that it is possible to create cash without  consuming time (a muse). It was under my nose. I had a website that was making $40K a year (Classifieds For Free) and just sold a PPC arbitrage website for a nice chunk of money.

He further told us countless stories of how people have optimized their muse and outsource their day-to-day tasks in generating passive cash flow without  having to worry about money or job security. I was fully prepared to take the challenge that lied before me.

3. Cost of Inaction

What is costing you to quit your job, starting a business, traveling, getting healthy, or anything else, what are the costs of waiting?  I wanted to experience a hedonistic life style. I wanted to indulge in psychedelic and legal sexual pleasure without any constraints. Time is finite, and I was not guaranteed the next day. I was 44.

Tim says, “Someday” is a disease that will take your dreams to the grave with you. Pro and con lists are just as bad. If it’s important to you and you want to do it “eventually,” just do it and correct course along the way.”

At the age of 44, two decades after I graduated from university, I realized that I have enough money and a valuable skill to fall back for launching my hedonistic life journey. The feeling was great and most liberating.

4. The Guilt of Non-Finishing

From childhood we are taught that we have to finish a task once we start. From dinner to music lessons, from art class to Karate lesson, we are told to finish what we have started. We don’t want to be quitter.

Tim challenges the idea of finishing everything. He said just because you start something, doesn’t automatically justify finishing it. As an example he aid if you bought a  $9 bags of popcorn and 64oz drinks in a movie theatre, you don’t have to finish it.  Its okay to stop something that is boring or a waste of time if it isn’t required as part of your job.

Tim says, “Lifestyle design is based on massive action— output. Increased output necessitates decreased input. Most information is time-consuming, negative, irrelevant to your goals, and outside of your influence.”

Enjoy the things that really matter to you. If you have passion for something, enjoy your passions. If you like to watch SciFi movies, don’t waste your time watching romance. If you like to play video game, don’t waste your time watching political debates.

5. Freedom Means Giving Up Control

I was a perfectionist and afraid to give up control when designing a software or system. I wanted to do every thing by myself. Being able to live in a way for the first few years due to the money I had in my banks, it was easy. However, after a few years when I started freelancing, I did not care to control software design and development process.

I set up systems to architect solutions and  outsource many aspects of design and development.  I was enjoying a 4-hour work week, leading a hedonistic lifestyle at the expense of some  one in India or Philippines working 40 or 60 hours to lead a normal lifestyle of a white collar worker.

 

Essential Travel Tips For Solo Travelers For Fun On the Road

While traveling in a pair or groups is always fun, there is nothing more exciting than going on a solo vacation. It’s a feeling of freedom that gives you the desire to embrace the entire world at once. From my own experience, I have five suggestions that should help you make the most out of your solo trip.

1. Make a plan
Going on a trip alone doesn’t mean that you should go unprepared. On the contrary, you need to conduct thorough preparations in this situation. First of all, make a precise plan of transport and accommodation so you know where you’ll be staying each night and how to get there (to be safe, you may want to share this with someone back home). After that, you should organize your time abroad and make a schedule of all the places that you want to visit. However, I suggest you plan some unstructured time: don’t let your vacation turn into a race with your schedule and calendar.

2. Be careful at night
The biggest fear of single tourists is facing awkward or dangerous situations in unknown places, especially bearing in mind that women make up more than 60% of solo travelers (according to Infogram.com). However, this should not be a problem if you pay attention to where you go out at night and avoid suspicious venues. When you enter a café or bar, go to the counter and connect with the staff. Bartenders and waiters keep an eye on the nearby customers and you will feel safe around them.

3. Meet the locals
One of the great benefits of traveling without a group of fellow tourists is that you’re free to meet the locals and learn about their culture and everyday habits. There are dozens of places where you can get acquainted with local residents—in the market place, sports events, bars, and restaurants, for example. But wherever you get in touch with the locals, be friendly and interested; try to find out more about them and their country. You’ll usually find your attitude returned in kind.

4. Walk a lot
The best way to discover new places is on foot, and as a solo traveler you’re free to let your feet take you where they will. When you wander the streets of the city or town you’re visiting, you will have more time to enjoy all those beautiful places around you and also to grab a quick bite somewhere or take a break in a cozy bar. Make your vacation more active with long walks and don’t waste too much time in hotels or tourist-focused restaurants.

5. Go easy with the luggage
It is crucial as a solo traveler that you plan your luggage properly. Don’t let your bags become a burden you have to lug around on your own. Bring a comfortable backpack or just one wheel-equipped suitcase and that’s it. This way, you’ll be able to move around quickly even if you need to keep all your luggage with you.

The best way to experience solo travel is to hit the road. A break free lifestyle makes it possible whenever you want. 9-5 life style chains you to place and restrains your freedom of movement.  You can start your solo travel of India with the following place Best Places Solo Travel In India

A Little-Known Airbnb Trick To Save a Lot For Break Free Lifestyle

Having spent a lot of time traveling in South America, Caribbean, Mexico, and Asia, I have learned how to stretch a dollar (or five). Besides airfare, your number one expense while traveling is usually going to be where you lay your head at night. And if you are traveling as a couple, even your average hostel is going to start to add up (and let’s be honest, hostels are not always the preferred option).

Enter Airbnb. A fantastic site that offers you a wide range of options from a couch in the corner to a mansion on the beach. In countries such as Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador, even on a night-by-night basis you can find rates for renting an entire apartment comparable to paying for a hostel.

Not being the backpacking type, I prefer to set down roots temporarily in a city for the opportunity to live like a local for a time. This means I spend more than a month in any city. What I was delighted to find was that many apartments on Airbnb actually provide discounts for longer term stays. When booking my stay in the Caribbean town of Santa Marta, Colombia, I found discounts between 40% and 60% off the nightly rate when booking for more than two weeks. After about 20 minutes of searching and comparing, I settled on a beachside luxury studio for $603 for a month. Booking by the nightly rate would have cost $1,550 for the month, so I saved $947.

The actual discount will vary from host to host, but, especially in the slightly less in-demand cities, you will usually find between a 50% to 60% discount for a month-long stay. Even in major cities, there are still good deals to be had. Staying in Buenos Aires, Argentina, I was able to rent a duplex in the coveted Soho Palermo neighborhood for $732 for an entire month (with a total discount of 26% off the nightly rate).

Airbnb has become a business for many in South America, where people work full-time managing multiple Airbnb apartments. The upside of this is you are often dealing with someone very keen for that five-star review and hosts will often go out of their way to make sure you have a memorable experience. “Housewarming” gifts have included wine, fresh cut flowers, even bicycles to use to explore the city. One host offered the use of his other property on a secluded private beach for no extra charge since it was vacant one weekend.

Discounts are often offered for as little as a week-long stay. Make sure to always check varying dates and the rental details, because it can happen that a six-night stay may cost more than a seven-night stay when the discount kicks in for the seventh night (for example, a $30 per night rate would be $180 for six nights vs. $168 for seven nights with a 20% discount).

Whatever your time needs are, whether it’s a week, a month, or longer, Airbnb is a great place to start to get upscale local living at a discounted rate. And this is all possible if you adopt break free lifestyle to free you from your 9-5 jobs.

 

You Would be Shocked to Know You Can Get a Second Passport

Do you know where your parents or grandparents were born? Seems like an odd question, but finding the answer could determine whether you have an existing legal right to citizenship in another country.

There are two major legal principles of citizenship law that most countries use to determine citizenship status:

Bloodline, or the principle of jus sanguinis, (Latin for “right of blood”): describes a child’s citizenship resulting from the nationality of a father or mother, or from earlier ancestors, usually limited to grandparents. This is called “citizenship by descent.” Most countries apply this rule in some form.

Countries that follow this legal “descent” principle in some form include Ireland, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Hungary, Poland, Lithuania, Estonia, Greece, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Serbia, Slovakia, Armenia, Ukraine, Israel, Lebanon, South Africa, Rwanda, Australia, the Philippines, Afghanistan, South Korea, Mexico, and Argentina.

Place of birth, or the principle of jus soli, (Latin for “right of soil”): meaning that being born within the geographic territory over which a country has sovereignty may automatically make the newborn child a citizen of that country. Not all countries apply this rule.

In this globally connected world, dual citizenship has become commonplace. Dual nationality simply means that a person is legally a citizen of two countries at the same time, qualified as such under each nation’s law.

In 1996, only seven of 17 Latin American countries allowed some form of dual nationality; now all do. In 2006, India changed its policy to allow a modified form of dual citizenship for Indians living outside their home country. Now, every major country whose nationals migrate to the United States in large numbers allows dual citizenship; except China, South Korea, and Cuba.

The Republic of Ireland offers a widely known example of automatic citizenship by descent. Under Irish nationality law, blood lines determine a birthright to citizenship even without ever having lived in the country. Irish laws confer nationality on those born within Ireland, on those who prove they have an Irish parent or grandparent, and on those who marry an Irish citizen.

Since Ireland is a European Union member state, the Irish passport is one of the most sought-after travel documents. With a population of 4.8 million, Ireland has millions of current official passports in worldwide circulation, many thousands held by U.S. citizens.

Do you know who your ancestors were?

Over 40 million U.S. citizens—nearly 12% of all Americans—can trace their ancestry to Ireland and thus are eligible for an Irish passport. There are 31.8 million U.S. citizens of Mexican origin, many entitled to dual U.S.-Mexican citizenship. A 2011 Hungarian law confers citizenship on anyone who is a descendant of a person who was a Hungarian citizen before 1920. There are 1.6 million U.S. citizens of Hungarian descent who might qualify.

The path to automatic second citizenship for you and your family may be revealed in your family tree. It may be time to investigate those vague stories you’ve heard about your family roots. Your ancestral origins may qualify you for dual citizenship.

Ways To Break Free From Your Routine Life

Routines are facts of life for most people. We’re told, “Go to school; go to college; get a job; get married; have a baby; save your money”; and then “retire.”

The thing is, routines and rules, and expectations aren’t the same for everyone.

Not everyone can fit inside this two-dimensional box and find contentment. For some of us, these routines are toxic. For others, our full potential can never be realized inside of a cubicle.

We need more than this. We need adventure and freedom. We need to tear down society’s expectations and take life by the horns.

It’s easier said than done. It’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole of monotony and accept whatever life throws us. It’s easy (and safer) to just waste away.

If you do this, you’ll never truly find happiness.

At the end of it all, you’ll look back at your life and wonder where you went wrong.

Liberate yourself before it’s too late.

Here are ways to break free of your life before you’re trapped forever:

Surround yourself with strong people

If you surround yourself with conformists, the only result you’ll ever get is more conformity.

These are the people who’ll cloud your judgment. These people will keep you from ever breaking free of what you already know.

The only way to see clearly is to surround yourself with people who know they are capable of more, and to be with those who have a tangible idea of what they want.

Renew your passport

Using the line, “Well, I don’t have a passport,” as a reason for staying where you are is far too common.

Sure, it takes six-to-eight weeks for it to come in the mail, but so what? You don’t have anything planned… YET.

Now you have a passport; maybe you’ll be inspired to book a flight.

Travel is the thing that typifies the human experience. It’s what adds color to your life.

Don’t be afraid to walk away from people

It may be frightening to end a friendship, but if a person is doing nothing but bringing you down and encouraging you to settle down, marry, and follow his foot steps, let him or she go.

If you surround with people who are comfortable in routing lives, working hard to climb corporate ladders, and put you down for your free lifestyle, you may get depressed and think what you are trying to do is not socially acceptible.

Quit your terrible job.

Don’t jump the gun! Take some time to save a little cash. Get your bank account to a healthy amount and then peace out of there.

Sure, you’ll need to find a new work eventually to earn money but believe me it is not difficult. If you have prepared yourself with skills that you can sell, it will be no problem at all. If you’re not able to sell your skill outside a routine job, then you’re doing a BS job.

Start bettering yourself

Start working out, write down 10-to-15 new ideas every single day and start eating more healthily. Take pride in your body and your life.

Make good decisions. Choose yoga over a hard night of partying; choose a gym membership over self-pity.

Start the process of making yourself better and everything else will fall into place.

Get rid of useless commitments that do nothing for you.

Don’t waste your precious time with obligations that only stifle you.

 

Push yourself out of your comfort zone

Don’t try to throw yourself into the deep end immediately.

Take small steps. Push yourself further and further every day.

Don’t stop challenging yourself; continue pressing onward into unknown territory.

Take time to be alone

You need quality time with yourself and your mind to think about what you want.

You have to turn off the noise from your world, forget about the outside pressures and just listen to your heart.

Silence is golden.

Stop being afraid of failure and rejection

There will be times you fail and there will be times you’re rejected. They can strike your ego down faster than lightening strikes a tree.

You can’t let those moments and situations deter you from your destiny. You have to keep forging your path forward with the strength to make a better future.

Connecting With Someone For Dating

I quit my job, divorced, and sold all my furniture in the house. I acquired a huge pile of money close to a million dollar after I got divorced and put the money in dozen or more checking  accounts. That is freedom, baby, I said to myself.

I didn’t like being alone. I am the sort of person who likes to sleep with a young girl, preferably naked. I wanted a sugar baby.

I had a table and one chair and I had a sofa in the apartment in New York. Apartment in New York is expensive. I did not want to buy furniture or kitchen stuff.

I had no plates in my kitchen. I had a mattress on the floor. That was the extent of my furniture. I sat on that one chair and made it a full time job to find the woman of my dreams.

You may not want to meet the love of your life. You might want to meet the “love of the next six months.” Or…”the love of the next week.” That’s fine also. Nobody can predict the future. I know I am horrible at predicting the future.

A) QUANTITY

I saw an article recently, “how to bang a lot of chicks.” That’s not what I mean by quantity. In fact, that’s the opposite of quantity. If anything, if you follow that strategy you may be slapped.

I had plenty of time to sign up for lots of dating sites and send at least 100 messages a day to women.

I would arrange dates for lunch, dinner, whenever. I’d travel 40 miles to go on a date. Some women wanted to talk on the phone. I’d set aside an hour or two a day to talk on the phone.

But nothing really mattered until I met the person.

If you meet ten people you think you are attracted to, you might actually be only attracted to one. The other thing is: given my situation most women didn’t even respond to my messages. So quantity was critical.

B) Ask out everyone

 

Dating is like war. You have to consider every angle, you have to be flexible, you can’t rely on what worked for you in the past, and you have to be very open-minded.

I know this sounds pathetic. I don’t care what people think. This is why I deliberately made this a too-long-to-read post. Anyway, this is what I did.

C) Mystique

 

I put up no picture on any dating site. Making use of my “nothing”.

Someone told me, or I read somewhere (I forget) that mystique is a key part of charisma. I have no idea if this is true.

Most women won’t consider clicking on a profile with no picture. If they did, though, then it meant I could start having a conversation with them and take it to the next level. They had already passed a significant hurdle in clicking on me (a profile with no picture) so they had something “invested” in me being interesting.

This is equivalent the Hare Krishnas giving out a flower before asking for money. You took the flower. You are in!

 

D) Say no

My biggest rule: Saying NO when everything seemed great.

If I liked a girl, she was pretty, we went on a date, and it was all systems go, BUT I knew this was not going to be a long-term relationship for whatever reason… then I said “No” and would leave before anything would happen.

A spider can get stuck in it’s own web  and I didn’t want to spin anything I would have a hard time getting out of. This is really the most important rule.

Too many people go to bed too quickly. Two problems then:

– now you have a situation to deal with.

– if she goes to bed quickly with you, she might go to bed quickly with someone else. I don’t like feeling jealous on my nights off.

So I liked girls who said “No” also.

And, this is not in a manipulative way. None of this was manipulative. But finding someone who is a good person, who you legitimately like and want to go out with, is not magic. It’s not about destiny or fate.

It’s about hard work, psychology, and economics.

E) Out-no the woman.

I didn’t want to seem like I was in a rush or anything. But the reality was, I was shy and liked to take it slow. So it was easy for me to say that. And it threw her off a bit. Mission accomplished!

And I guess there is a little bit of gamesmanship in there. Not only would she not feel pressure but maybe she would feel nervous. OK, I admit to a tiny bit of manipulation.

F) Fast first date

I was such an idiot, always setting up dinners with women. To be honest, you know in a few seconds if you’re going to be attracted enough to consider spending the rest of your life with that person.

One time I drove for an hour for a dinner with a woman who was from Eastern European country. Within two seconds I knew not for me. But there I was in a two hour dinner and then another hour long drive home. No good.

So we I decided to met for a cup of cofee. And she had a specific timeline. She had a 5 p.m. train to catch in New York. So it had to stop at a certain point no matter what.

G) Research

I found another girl.  She first wrote me that she was from Montevideo. I wrote back, “Great! I’ve never been to Uruguay.” Thankfully she jumped over another hurdle to meet me by ignoring my total stupidity.

It shows you either how useless years of formal education is or how stupid I was. Maybe both.

Other situations: I went on a date with someone interested in Kaballah. I read everything I could about it in a 3 hour period and was able to drop all the right terms and sound impressive. Again, this sounds manipulative and it is but two things:

– I fully admit I was in a weaker position.

The myth of manipulation is that the manipulator is somehow “stronger” than the person being manipulated.

But no manipulation ever occurs unless the one doing the manipulating is weaker. That was me. Weak.

– I really wanted to see if I could be interested in the other person’s interests. Particularly since at the time I had almost no interests other than just let it go, drinking, and having sex. Oh, and I dreamed of being a stand-up comic.

H) Surprise!

I would surprise on every date. Sometimes I would buy offbeat gifts (again, the famous Hare Krishna technique).

I also had a list of carefully researched outlandish places all over the city where I could take people on dates. Hidden restaurants, all-dark restaurants, offbeat places that nobody would expect, etc.

Sometimes I would go to the restaurant the day before and pay and tip with all two dollar bills. So when I arrived there the next day with my date I would be treated differently than other customers. I know this is starting to sound more and more loser-ish, but I can’t help it. This is what I did. And it worked!

Connecting with another person is very difficult. I had to use every law of psychology and economics to help me.