Author Topic: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0  (Read 4400 times)

steevven1

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How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« on: June 19, 2019, 11:35:04 PM »
Recently started a finance/travel blog with my wife. Thought this post might resonate with the Mustachian community. Would love some feedback.

Unrelated to this article, but we're actually currently living in a van while visiting all 61 US National Parks this year...so if you're into that sort of thing, feel free to check out other articles and follow our social media if you want updates in the future.

https://www.tripofalifestyle.com/money/zero-dollar-hawaii-honeymoon/

Gerard

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2019, 09:59:14 AM »
Nice. I especially like that you didn't gloss over the bits that might not work for everyone. If anything, you were extra direct about them.

I'm not a car person, but I suspect car people would like to know if there were any techniques you used to get more for your car than you paid for it.

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2019, 02:31:01 PM »
Thanks!

Yeah, what I've learned from just talking to friends and family about money over the years is that if you don't directly address how other people's lives are a bit different than your own, you can alienate people. You don't want people to say "well, you have xyz and I don't, so I can't do this." You want them to see the things that they can do and use those to improve their life.

Regarding the car, I'm not super mechanically inclined or a savant with buying and selling cars, but these are the things that increased my chances of success:
  • Bought the car at the tail end of its depreciation curve, so that the depreciation over a 6-month period would be close to 0.
  • Negotiated the price down upon purchase (most people have some wiggle room, especially if you show up with an envelope full of actual cash.
  • Without any experience, did repairs on my own using YouTube and a little advice from the guys at Advance Auto Parts...This car needed spark plugs, an AC coolant refill, a new window switch, and something else minor that I can't even remember any more. I bought most of the parts used on eBay. This kept the "net" cost of owning the car overall way down.
  • When it came time to sell, I listed it like a month early and started on the HIGH end of the plausible price range. With anyone who called, I kept SUPER firm on my price, no wiggle room. I knew that if I sold it early, I'd be happy because we got so much for it, and we could ride our bikes for the remaining time on the island. If it came down to the wire and I needed to get it sold, I could drop the price by a lot in the final week or two and still come out okay. I also had friends on the island at this point, so in a real pinch, I could even have someone else sell it for me after leaving. We never had to do any of that. Somebody bit at my full asking price after a couple of weeks.

Alternatepriorities

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2019, 12:53:30 AM »
Have you made it to Alaska yet on your National parks tour? If youíre planning to be up there later this summer, my wife and I open to hosting some fellow Mustachian travelers.

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2019, 07:14:20 PM »
Ahh, we JUST finished all 8 Alaska parks! Driving back south through Canada now. I really appreciate that offer and totally would have taken you up on it if it had been a few weeks ago. You live in a beautiful state!

Nate79

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2019, 07:55:14 PM »
Sounds like you had a good time but it certainly wasn't a 6 month honeymoon for $0. You worked and paid for the cost with your income. 

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steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2019, 08:05:53 PM »
You got me :-)

Haha, all kidding aside, you're absolutely right, but the idea that you have to "save up for travel" and then subsequently deplete that savings (the traditional way of vacationing) is the idea we're trying to dispel here. In addition to that, the drudgery of work basically completely disappears when you're only doing it 10 hours a week, so it didn't really feel like we were "working for it." Doing a little work was a welcome change of pace.

The credit card travel hacking was mostly the only "free money" part of the equation though (which was substantial!).

Alternatepriorities

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2019, 02:34:29 PM »
Ahh, we JUST finished all 8 Alaska parks! Driving back south through Canada now. I really appreciate that offer and totally would have taken you up on it if it had been a few weeks ago. You live in a beautiful state!

Bummer we missed you, but Iím glad you had a good visit. I look forward to reading about your visit particularly the parks that are not on the road system. We havenít been to all of those yet ourselves.

LateToTheParty

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2019, 07:19:41 AM »
Traveling around the US in a camper van is my dream!  I am going to follow your blog adventures.
Might be able to do this ourselves in 1.5 years.

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2019, 12:29:16 PM »
Ahh, we JUST finished all 8 Alaska parks! Driving back south through Canada now. I really appreciate that offer and totally would have taken you up on it if it had been a few weeks ago. You live in a beautiful state!

Bummer we missed you, but Iím glad you had a good visit. I look forward to reading about your visit particularly the parks that are not on the road system. We havenít been to all of those yet ourselves.

Those parks were by far the most expensive part of our entire trip. Actually, when I eventually post about the financials of the National Parks trip (after it's all done), I'm gonna break out the total cost both including and excluding those few super-difficult-to-access parks because they were so significant in the overall cost...but they were pretty spectacular. Definitely follow our social media (links on the homepage: https://www.tripofalifestyle.com) or do the email newsletter signup...some Alaska stuff should be coming up in the next month or so.

Traveling around the US in a camper van is my dream!  I am going to follow your blog adventures.
Might be able to do this ourselves in 1.5 years.

It's been super fun. Thanks for following along, and I hope you enjoy!

malacca

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2019, 10:34:55 PM »
Absolutely awesome. You two seem to have some entrepreneur qualities that you applied to your life. Super great.

Life can be grand - if you make it so!

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #11 on: July 14, 2019, 08:56:22 AM »
Absolutely awesome. You two seem to have some entrepreneur qualities that you applied to your life. Super great.

Life can be grand - if you make it so!

Thank you for the kind words!

golfreak12

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #12 on: July 14, 2019, 09:13:39 PM »
I've checked some of the stuff on your blog and enjoyed it.
Loved your adventures.
We just got back from Hawaii too and our trip was also FREE. (Helps to have a rich friend that has a house in Kapalua).
BTW, me and the wife are UCF alumni. Go Knights !!!!

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2019, 03:16:53 AM »
I've checked some of the stuff on your blog and enjoyed it.
Loved your adventures.
We just got back from Hawaii too and our trip was also FREE. (Helps to have a rich friend that has a house in Kapalua).
BTW, me and the wife are UCF alumni. Go Knights !!!!

Awesome! Always happy to have another Floridian reader :-)

soccerluvof4

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2019, 04:09:07 AM »
That is effeminately on my bucket list to travel the USA and hit all the parks. Might be a ways away but I want to incorporate that and some hiking the Appalachian trail.

FireHiker

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #15 on: July 16, 2019, 11:26:28 AM »
I'll be following your national park journey, thanks for the link! I'm at 31 and have the goal of visiting all of them as well. I also plan to thru-hike the PCT in 2031 (youngest graduates high school in 2030).

My husband and I are currently in the process of downsizing from our 3,690 square foot clown house to a 1,642 square foot townhome so that we can FIRE by 2025 and travel more. Trading "dream house" for "dream life" is how we're viewing it. :)

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2019, 11:16:25 PM »
That is effeminately on my bucket list to travel the USA and hit all the parks. Might be a ways away but I want to incorporate that and some hiking the Appalachian trail.

It's been a wild ride!

I'll be following your national park journey, thanks for the link! I'm at 31 and have the goal of visiting all of them as well. I also plan to thru-hike the PCT in 2031 (youngest graduates high school in 2030).

My husband and I are currently in the process of downsizing from our 3,690 square foot clown house to a 1,642 square foot townhome so that we can FIRE by 2025 and travel more. Trading "dream house" for "dream life" is how we're viewing it. :)

That's awesome! I hope you find our takes on the parks useful. We actually just visited park #56 yesterday, although we've only written about 20 so far. Lots of catching up to do and lots more National Park articles to come.

Glad to hear you're downsizing. If you're going into it with a positive attitude, I doubt there is much chance you'll ever regret the choice. The freedom is totally worth it.

2Birds1Stone

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2019, 12:38:49 AM »
Lovely blog, hope to read more articles about your 61 NP Road Trip!

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #18 on: July 20, 2019, 01:17:16 AM »
Since there's a lot of interest in the National Parks trip, we created a landing page just for that. Eventually this page will link out to a bunch of articles covering the trip (only some of which are complete now...lots of work to do). I'll make a new thread with more info when we finish them all!

https://www.tripofalifestyle.com/nationalparks/

onward19

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #19 on: July 20, 2019, 06:41:02 PM »
I have always wanted to visit several of the National Parks, such as the Grand Canyon and Yosemite. Your trip is an inspiration. I am amazed at your creativity in coming up with the gym solution to showers - would never have thought of that!

steevven1

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Re: How We Took A 6-month Hawaii Honeymoon for $0
« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2019, 12:29:31 PM »
I have always wanted to visit several of the National Parks, such as the Grand Canyon and Yosemite. Your trip is an inspiration. I am amazed at your creativity in coming up with the gym solution to showers - would never have thought of that!

Do it! Totally worth it!

To be honest, we weren't so sure how enjoyable this lifestyle was gonna be before we set out, but once we took the leap, we realized it was a lot easier (and cheaper) than we thought.

Hope you'll follow along as we post more :-)