David and Angela are a married couple who have an obsession with travel. They kissed for the first time in Denmark, decided to move in together while hot tubbing in Hawaii, got engaged on the Eiffel Tower in France and married on a beach in Mexico.
The Dang Travelers’ mission is to highlight amazing locations, pass along budget-friendly tips, share their favorite travel resources, and to post about their journey from part-time to full-time travel. These Pinterest superstars (845,000 monthly viewers!) are exploring the 50 U.S. states from a minivan turned camper.
1.)Where was the first place that you traveled that made you think WOW—travel is amazing (think history book come to life or …..)
The first place I traveled to that really blew me away was Alaska. I spent three weeks there for a work trip when I was twenty years old and nothing prepared me for its natural beauty. Alaska is absolutely breathtaking. It was also my first national park visit and I happened to see a small glimpse of what the Northern Lights are like. It was at the end of summer so it wasn’t peak season, but it was an incredible sight to see. It was a turning point for me on appreciating nature and what it has to offer. Now fast-forward to almost twenty years later and one of my goals is to visit all the national parks we have in the United States. I have 31 under my belt so far!
2.)If you had unlimited resources, where would you go and what would you do?
Unlimited resources? Oh man, that’s the dream isn’t it? I would say a round-the-world trip. With goals such as experience an African safari, witness the Monarch butterfly migration, bike the Rhine, and a long-distance hike in a faraway land. So many things with so little time!
3.)What were you afraid to do and how did you find the courage to overcome it?
I was afraid to quit my job to travel. I was in my mid-thirties working 60+ hour work weeks as a CPA. I was climbing the corporate ladder so it was a difficult and scary decision to quit, but I did it. I overcame the fear by being prepared and realistic about what quitting really meant. My husband and I spent years cultivating a plan which meant saving money, living frugally, and doing TONS of research. It’s been over four years now and we are going strong.
4.)What apps do you use regularly that make your life easier?
We use Personal Capital to track our travel expenses to stay under budget and cannot leave on a road trip without either Google Maps or Waze up and running.
Everywhere and anywhere. Is that too broad of an answer? A goal of ours at Dang Travelers is to inspire people to travel as much as they can even if that means a weekend getaway close to home. I think if people made travel a priority and opened themselves to new experiences, the world would be a better place.
6.)Best advice you have been given and by whom?
The best advice I have ever been given was from my first boss at my first “real” job. He convinced me to put more than I thought I could afford away into my retirement account to take full advantage of the employee match program. It was the first step I took toward gaining financial freedom.
7.)When were you surprised by the kindness of strangers on a trip?
Our GPS was useless at one point on our road trip through Ireland so we stopped and asked for directions in a small town pub. The bartender never heard of the place we were looking for and he was the only one tending bar during lunch rush hour. We asked a few more people but to no avail. After we had already walked about a block away, he chased us down to tell us he found out where we needed to go. He then talked with us about our trip and how we liked Ireland so far. As we made our way back to the car, we chuckled a little thinking about all the people that were probably not so excited that he left the pub to help us out. We will always remember his act of kindness and genuine love for his country that we experienced while chatting with him.
8.)What inspired you to travel for extended periods of time or live in a new country?
The allure of slow travel while learning about different cultures and ways of living are what inspired me to travel for extended periods of time.
9.)I travel because….I travel to awaken my soul and widen my perspective on life.
10.) My favorite travel or business book is… My favorite travel book right now (depends on when you ask me) is A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson. It’s a hilarious first-hand account of two friends walking the Appalachian Trail.
11.) How about hotels? What’s your favorite or one you’d recommend?
When we aren’t sleeping in our minivan, we utilize IHG hotels often, one of the largest hotel chains in the world. They are middle-of-the-road on cost and we belong to their rewards program and use their credit card to redeem free points and anniversary nights.
Lastly, can you please recommend a resource for up-and-coming travel writers; this could be a course you know, a book, conference etc.
For up-and-coming travel writers, I would recommend joining Facebook groups and Twitter chats. It’s a great way to connect with other writers to learn and ask questions.
Angela shares her passion for travel and storytelling with her readers at Dang Travelers. She, along with her husband, are exploring the United States in their minivan turned campervan.
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