Expat Plans

It’s so hard to stick around Canada when all we want to do is peace out and become expats today. Right Meow. Not a year from now, not two, definitely not three. But we need to save money, and we need to pay off debt. We need to set ourselves up to not have to come back, and that doesn’t seem to be an easy task by any means. We often struggle with making short-term choices that will save money.. for example: not eating out as much, buying crap, or sticking to the necessities. For me, it is much easier for me, than Jamie. But I still struggle. We spend far too much of our money on needless crap: stuff that does not make us better people, make us healthier, or serve a purpose to get us out of here.

Making Money/Saving Money

Saving money also comes down to trying to find methods of income so that if I do not have a job right away we can still survive without dipping into our savings too much. I’ve looked at all of those things from Rodan and Fields, Redbox (which I absolutely love, but not many people have committed to it like me, lose 5-15 lbs in your first 8 days, heck yes!) and Stella and Dot for while we are still in Canada to help save a bit extra and pay things off.. but those do not seem to be very easy and are getting me nowhere.

I’ve also started using Teachers Pay Teachers to post a lot of my teaching materials that I have made over the years but not sharing. While it wont net me much now, I think eventually if I post enough stuff it might end up making me a bit of money. I just need to make my stuff look a little better. The sad thing is I had so much content that I could have posted, but after the Fort McMurray Fire, many of us lost a lot of stuff that was in our classrooms, so I am essentially starting over again. This takes a lot of time to create great content. And then you don’t see a payoff anytime soon.. this is definitely a long-term plan. I’ve made $40 from it over the last couple years. But I only had two things posted.

We are looking at the different blogging and social media platforms.. but I don’t think that is a get rich quick option like many have made it out to be. While we have added google ads to our website, when you don’t have a lot of content, it is harder to get a lot of views. We have a fairly active presence on Twitter and Instagram, but that is also time-consuming. With both of us having full-time jobs in which we work well over the 40 hour work week, and me going to school part-time to get my special education certificate for when we eventually leave.. it seems like such a daunting task.

Anybody have any ideas or things that have worked? Please let us know in our comment section!

Location, Location, Location

There also is the question of where…

We’ve done so much research in the past few months about where to go. We would really like to get to South East Asia, but the $10,000 CAD to move the dogs over is definitely a speed bump. To save that long and have to spend that much for the two dogs just seems like a hurdle we cannot move past.

However, I have an old friend from many years back who has lived in Kuala Lumpur for the past 5 years. His girlfriend became a teacher two years ago and is now many $45,000 USD a year as a teacher there. Today he randomly messaged me about it and keeps urging me to take the plunge. Every time we have talked over the past few years it has been the same. He always tells me how much he loves it and is not looking back, how much I will enjoy it, how easy it will be for me to get a job as a western trained teacher, and that I just need to do it already. This year, he told his very close knit family that he does not see himself moving back home ever, unless he is forced to.

Kuala Lumpur Expat
Kuala Lumpur at night.. Beautiful

Having a connection and contact abroad does make it seem a bit easier of a task to overcome. He, like us, did not have any friends or know anybody when he moved there. He said that making friends with fellow expats was quite easy, we are all in the same boat, going through the same moving pains in a foreign country. They’ve made some amazing connections, and life long friends. He doesn’t speak any of the language there, sticks only to English and has gotten by, quite successfully. The one thing he stresses is the cheapness of flights and the ability he has to freely roam the world for super cheap prices. Return tickets to Phuket and Bali are around $100 USD. You can easily get away for a weekend for less than it costs in gas for a trip from Fort Mac to Edmonton.. something we used to do to get away.

The draw to SE Asia is increasing for sure. That is where we both ultimately want to be… it seems there is other means pulling us there as well. We have friends over there, travelling and adventuring around Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, and Indonesia. I keep seeing pictures cluttering up my news feeds on all the different social media platforms. To go somewhere where I have at least one friend would be phenomenal, especially with his girlfriends connections with international schools as well. Just makes me need to save money more efficiently because I want to be an Expat in just over a year. Time to buckle down and really make things happen. I don’t want this to just be a dream.. it needs to happen.

What about you.. anybody else find themselves an expat in SE Asia? Share your thoughts, details, pointers, anything!