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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 08:11 AM   #21
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Re: Retirement Travel

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Originally Posted by mickeyd
Did you get a chance to throw one back at Teddy Roosevelt favorite bar?
You betcha!!! It was a nice quite repose from the bustling throng!
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 08:17 AM   #22
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Re: Retirement Travel

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Originally Posted by Robert the Red
In 2 words -- Southeast Asia . Not counting flights, the two of us spent about $50-60 per day in 3 weeks in Thailand and Cambodia. Traveled by A/C bus for $6 fare for 6 hours. Stayed in A/C guesthouses or hotels for $15/night (these were nice clean places -- you can go lower, and we did once, but didn't like it). It was a great trip, and I hope to go back for a longer peregrination when I ER.
I was thinking SE Asia too. Latin America could also be a cheap travel destination. If "nice" and upscale" are things you are looking for, you can still find it in the larger cities at a very reasonable price. I've done Mexico for 6 weeks and it was very affordable.
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 09:36 AM   #23
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Re: Retirement Travel

I just spent a month in Chapala, Mexico and spent $32.26 per day. I had a one bed, one bath, kitchen furnished apt. Cable TV and maid service. The air was $404.00 and not inclued in these figures. Normally I would stay longer, but I went solo, so had to come back.. here's some photos http://www.retireearlylifestyle.com/photos_mexico.htm

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 10:07 AM   #24
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Re: Retirement Travel

Popularity of travel for retirees makes sense! It takes TIME and few constraints to really enjoy travel, and few of us have that kind of time while we are working. It's also tough to travel when you are raising a family.

Oh, we knew right off the bat that travel would be a major priority. In fact we accumulated "extra" in the year before retirement so that we would have a very generous travel budget for the first two years of retirement. Ironically, we sold off a bunch of tech stocks in 1999 that we had bought in 1997 to help boost the "travel fund". Turned out to be a good move!!!

We thought that a couple of years of travel would satisfy the wanderlust. Boy were we wrong! We continued to travel about as much, but our travel expenses came way down because we started doing it on our own instead of going on group trips. During this time we had a large chunk of our annual expenses devoted to a "travel budget".

Now we are RV fulltimers, so our normal living expenses budget is the travel budget.

I think a lot of retirees find that as they become experienced travelers the costs come way down.

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 10:15 AM   #25
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Re: Retirement Travel

DW and I spent $35 a day on our 6 week jaunt (including transport to Mexico and back from NC). We stayed in "basic" hotels at $5-15/night, which isn't recommended if you can afford the much nicer $20-25/night hotel rooms.

We even went to the National Ballet in Mexico City, and dined at a few of the swank restaurants around town, and traveled around 1/2 the country. Many evenings were spent drinking cervezas. We even bought a bunch of silver objects. All for $35/day. It's pretty easy to do it "on the cheap" ($50-75 a day could get you rather nice accomodations and excellent dining every day).
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 11:13 AM   #26
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Re: Retirement Travel

[quote][I think a lot of retirees find that as they become experienced travelers the costs come way down.

Audrey/quote]

Audrey,
I couldn't say it any better.

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 06:11 PM   #27
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Re: Retirement Travel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy
I just spent a month in Chapala, Mexico and spent $32.26 per day. I had a one bed, one bath, kitchen furnished apt. Cable TV and maid service. The air was $404.00 and not inclued in these figures. Normally I would stay longer, but I went solo, so had to come back.. here's some photos http://www.retireearlylifestyle.com/photos_mexico.htm

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My goal is to get my DW away for a month somewhere in Mexico or Latin America away from the tourist areas. She (and I) dislike them because they are totally commercialized and are only geared towards gringos coming down, getting drunk and spending money.

I'm not sure what other possibilities I should consider.
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 06:28 PM   #28
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Re: Retirement Travel

2B,
Chapala is the largest expatriate community in the world. Let me translate,… there are many Gringos there. It’s a great place to live, visit and base out of. We have done this for years. It is a tourist destination, but mainly for rich Guadalajarans who come on the weekends and holidays. Chapala is an old colonial town with cobblestone roads, which adds to it’s character. Here’s some other information on Chapala. http://www.retireearlylifestyle.com/...nformation.htm

If you want more information I can direct you.

Billy
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-14-2006, 07:01 PM   #29
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Re: Retirement Travel

Hmmm

I thought Chapala was a mecca for 'crazy' bass fishermen looking for the really big one.

heh heh heh heh heh - a little tongue in cheek.
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-15-2006, 12:06 AM   #30
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Re: Retirement Travel

This summer I studied Spanish in Morelia, a city of about one million 3 hours driving East of Guadalajara (half way between Guadalajara and Mexico City). I'm writing this to give an idea of costs.

Flying down to Guadaljara is cheap! The awesome thing about traveling around in Mexico is that the bus system is so great. After a couple of weeks, a friend came down and joined me, we explored Morelia together and then we went by bus to Patzcuaro, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Zacatecas, and Guadalajara. It made a nice vacation!! And the weather is nice in the summer (average 2000 meters elevation, light rains about every other afternoon, although Guad is hotter).

These are mostly all tourist spots, but most of the tourists are Mexican (SMDA and Guad get some gringo tourists). We stayed in all decent hotels, no shared bathrooms (hey, friend was female, that was her boundary!), and I would say we paid an average of $28/night (inclusive) for a double/two-beds (so $14 per person). All of our rooms were large. We always stayed in the city center of our destination and so never actually needed to take taxis within the cities (maybe we could have saved by doing this).

Bus travel is probably about $6 per hour on average, and taxis are dirt cheap. I would say food is probably 50% of US cost for same quality/atmosphere. I tend to eat just two meals out per day when traveling.

Some principles of travel that I would like to practice in retirement, when I am not in such a hurry:

1) Don't move around all the time. You are retired! You can usually negotiate a weekly (or monthly!) rate at a hotel. In Guanajuato we were staying for three nights, so I asked for $2 off per night and got it. Many people at that hotel were long-termers.

2) Travel by bus/train when possible and enjoy the scenery, imbibe the culture, and talk to the locals on the way. And travel during the day!! That way you can see the scenery, and what is going on, maximize safety, and get to your next destination earlier to get a room.

3) Get up early. It is always safer during the day, you can do more things during the day, so it is more efficient to get up with the sun and go to bed earlier.

I am open to more retirement travel tips!! Bring 'em on!

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-15-2006, 12:13 AM   #31
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Re: Retirement Travel

Oh yeah, I do have a special travel budget for FIRE. It is my second highest monthly budget item, below rent and above health costs. Although I don't formally include it, there are things that you "save" from your regular budget when traveling [eating out, entertainment, maybe 30% of your utilities, gas, groceries], so you can effectively add these "savings" to your travel budget for the time you are gone.

So if you are out for, say, three months per year, you can add these costs up for three months and add that to your travel budget 8)

I figure the cheaper I can keep travel, the more places I can see, and the more time that I can travel. That is my main incentive for budget travel.

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-15-2006, 05:52 AM   #32
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Re: Retirement Travel

I also worked longer to travel. The best part is you can go off season and really enjoy yourself. We only take carry-ons so we don't have to hassle with luggage. semi-retired for me, DH has lots of vacation and flexibility.

Our first group of trips is to Europe. We love history and Art and are trying to do as many European capitals as we can. You will find that people are friendly and almost everyone speaks English.
We do the Rick Steves type hotels and have not been dissapointed. I found that Florence, Rome, London for example required lots of walking, stairs, cobblestones and uneven sidewalks. Of course, if you cannot navigate the obstacles and have to go on a tour I would do that too. If you are single you could go on a Rick Steves tour alone. We trek off the beaten path and try to find those hole in the wall restaurants. The food we had in Italy was outstanding.

We also go to an American destination every year. Black hills this year, used FF miles from last years European trip. Multiple southwest national parks to see, all beautiful in the off season. Just get the cheapest flight you can nearby to where you want to go and rent a vehicle. When you have flexibility you can search for the cheapest flights. Days in/Best Western type hotels are cheap on the offseason and you can have coffee and cereal included usually. Go to Walmart when you land and get a styrofoam cooler and fill with drinks and fruit. You can pick up subs (or Grinders, torpedoes, whatever you want to call them) too and really go on the cheap.

Will be going to Holland during tulip time next spring, all booked. Flights out of Newark around $500 round trip each. Even eating well and drinking Belgian beer should come in less than $3000 for two weeks. I can't wait. We use an airline credit card and book on the airline website 9 months in advance to get the cheapest flights, the miles and money points from the Europe trip will get us a free domestic ticket each.

the year after that I think Venice or Prague. We find two weeks away from home is just about enough for us for now.
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-16-2006, 02:51 AM   #33
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Re: Retirement Travel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy
I just spent a month in Chapala, Mexico and spent $32.26 per day. I had a one bed, one bath, kitchen furnished apt. Cable TV and maid service. The air was $404.00 and not inclued in these figures. Normally I would stay longer, but I went solo, so had to come back.. here's some photos http://www.retireearlylifestyle.com/photos_mexico.htm
Billy, Chapala sounds great. My original plan was to retire there, but then I visited Thailand

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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-16-2006, 08:57 AM   #34
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Re: Retirement Travel

Lancelot,
Same same, but different. Right? Cheap Tacos, great weather or, $5.00 massages and plenty of smiles. I think both places are a good solution.

Billy
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Re: Retirement Travel
Old 12-16-2006, 10:38 AM   #35
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Re: Retirement Travel

2B,

Quote:
My goal is to get my DW away for a month somewhere in Mexico or Latin America away from the tourist areas.
Give this place in Mexico a look-see. Price is right and it is not on the Quintana Roo beaten path.

http://www.laselvamariposa.com/
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