Interview With Manfred of Renegade Travels

petronas-towers-manfredLet’s start off by telling a bit about yourself, where did you grow up, do you remember your main life Goals when you were young and has that changed?

I grew up in the UK and Miu grew up in Thailand. We met a few years ago after I had moved to Thailand. I don’t think either of us had any real life goals when we were younger, apart from the usual of going to university, getting a good job and that kind of stuff. It was only later in life that I started setting goals for myself. We run a travel blog called www.renegadetravels.com.

 

What were the key factors that persuaded you to leave the comfort of your home?

I’d been living in London for around 20 years, had just sold my business and was at a loose end. I decided that I needed a change and so decided to move to Thailand. I aimed to work out what to do with the rest of my life after taking some time off. Once I got here I decided to stay. It’s a great place to live.

 

What were your biggest fears before you left home? , and how do you feel about them now?

I didn’t have any fears about leaving home. I thought ubud-miuthere was a possibility I might not like Thailand, but I could easily have gone home if that was the case. I’m quite adaptable, so moving to another country seems fairly straightforward for me. Things always seem to work out if you just go with the flow and don’t try to control things too much. So there’s no real need to worry about moving to another country. What’s the worst that can happen?

 

How long have you been traveling?

I left the UK almost four years ago and have spent most of that time in Bangkok, which I love. About a year ago we set off around Southeast Asia, visiting the north of Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. We then came back to Bangkok for a little rest.

 

Where are you now?

We’re currently in Bangkok, although we’ll be leaving this weekend.

 

What are your plans for the upcoming year?

For the rest of this year we plan to travel around Thailand. We’ll start off in the northeast and then work our way south, visiting Cha Am, Hua Hin, Krabi, Phuket, Koh Samui and a few of the other islands. We’ll stay in each place anything from a few days to a few months, depending on how we like them. After that we plan to spend 5-6 months traveling around Europe. We’d also like to fit in a month or two in New York sometime soon.

 

What countries do you consider you felt the safest? And did you feel safer than in your home country?

I would say that we felt pretty safe wherever we went in Southeast Asia, but the UK feels safer to me, maybe because I grew up there.

 

What countries do you feel the most on edge (in Danger) ?

While we felt safe in Vietnam, it did have a slightly bad vibe about it. There were far too many scams and other annoyances going on there, and for that reason we probably won’t be going back any time soon.

 

Any memorable dealings with government officials, Police or Border Guards?

Our dealings with government officials, police and border guards have been pretty pleasant. I’ve been stopped by police twice in Bangkok, both times were to warn me to keep my backpack safe because motorcycle snatch thieves were operating in the area.

 

Do you do any work while you travel, such as digital nomad, consulting, or odd jobs?

I update my blog while traveling, but apart from that neither of us work while traveling.

 

Tell us some of the experiences that made your jaw drop, left you in Awe, or were incredibly touching?

One of the high points for us was walking down into the crater of an active volcano in Indonesia. And what impressed us the most was watching the workers that carried sulfur from the bottom of the crater all the way to the base of the volcano. These men carry 50-70 kg of sulfur twice a day over a distance of around 12 kg. Their strength is truly amazing.

 

How has your traveling affected your relationships with your friends and family?

I still keep in touch regularly with family and my closest friends. But after being away for almost four years, some have fallen by the wayside. But we’ve both made more friends along the way.

 

Any Regrets?, Anything you would like a shot at a do-over?

There I certainly things I wouldn’t do if I had my time over again, but I don’t really have any regrets. Often, life’s most valuable lessons come from the mistakes you made. If you never made any mistakes, you’d never learn those lessons. That’s life. So no regrets.

 

Do you see an end to this journey, or do you expect to continue to be on the move, exploring most of your life?

I don’t see us traveling constantly at any time. Our travel style is to travel slowly and head back to base for at least six months a year. That suits us perfectly, as it means keeping in touch with friends and family and also seeing the world. It can get tiring staying in hotels for months on end, so it’s nice to be more settled some of the time.

 

Any words of encouragement for our readers to get them to leave the couch and hit the road?

The only advice I have is that if you really want to travel, then make it a priority. If you don’t have enough money at the moment, then set yourself a time frame in which to work hard and save as much as possible. Too many people claim that they want to travel but have a whole list of excuses of why they can’t at the moment.

 

Do you have any tips for others who are trying to get a successful blog up and going?

Our blog now gets around 25,000 page views per month, with over 14,000 unique visitors. All we did to get to that point was to keep posting regularly. I’d also suggest sticking to what you have experienced personally instead of writing generic blog posts. Also it’s good to use you own photos, as this shows that your blog is authentic. I wouldn’t think about it too much, but just set it up and start writing.

 

Have you written any books or have a blog, that you would like to plug, write out a brief description here?

I have a book called Travel Southeast Asia For Under $30 A Day. You can get a free copy at free book. Our blog is www.renegadetravels.com.

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One Response to Interview With Manfred of Renegade Travels

  1. Jerry Buice says:

    A great interview! I envy Manfred in all of his travels! Hopefully one day soon I will be able to do a fraction of what he does! Keep up the blog and keep us informed where you both are and where you are going to. Oh, the book was great and very informative.

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