Spending the summer working in Fiji was an eye-opening experience.
I explored secluded islands, ran across sandbars, visited a floating bar. I went hiking, kayaking, paddleboarding, ziplining, and skydiving above one of the most spectacular ocean views you can imagine.
I snorkeled with giant manta rays and swam under giant waterfalls. I witnessed more spectacular sunrises and sunsets than I can count. I jumped down sand dunes, lathered up in mud at hot pools, and led students in finding a little selflessness to work on local service projects.
All of that was incredible, but perhaps what I’ll remember the most about my summer in Fiji was the unique immersion of the experience, and the peace and joy I found in living simply.
Today I’m getting back to my travelin’ and work abroad ways. I’m spending the summer in Fiji working as a Global Communications Coordinator for Rustic Pathways.
I’m not sure how much updating I’ll be able to do while I’m on the ground, but you can follow along with my adventures creating future global citizens on Instagram at @rusticrachael!
I recently did an interview with Alexa Hart on Atlas Sliced, a travel show about living and working abroad.
Alexa is awesome and I had a great time talking to her about what it’s like to work abroad in Australia as an American on the Work & Holiday Visa. In addition to the basic nitty-gritty breakdown that everyone wants to know, I talk a bit about why working abroad in Australia is an awesome thing to do, and how it’s helped me get to where I am today. (Dare I say I had Alexa convinced?)
You can watch the interview below, or better yet, check out the episode on her site to get tons of other info and watch other inspiring interviews with people who’ve taken to the wind and gone abroad to build upon their careers and life experiences!
If you’re under the age of 30, and from one of many eligible countries around the world, getting a Working Holiday/Work & Holiday visa for Australia is almost unbelievably easy. Furthermore, if you’ve entered the workforce in the past few years, going to Australia to work for a year might even help further your career!
Even though they talk a lot about the GFC (Global Financial Crisis), Australia has remained remarkably sheltered from many of the negative economic effects other places in the world have experienced. After I graduated in 2009 (with a degree in advertising, an area not doing the best in such an economic climate) I could not find a job. When I returned from my trip to South America and my visits to Sweden and Jordan, I made the decision to move to Australia more for personal reasons (aka a Swedish boyfriend and a vague “non-goal” I’d had for the past ten years). It wasn’t until I got to Australia that I realized what a great decision it was for other reasons. (more…)
Maybe… Or maybe not.
If you begin your round the world trip in Oz, then it may be a fine idea to include it… although you better budget accordingly or you may find a yearlong RTW trip turning into nothing but a two-month RAT (Round Australia Trip). That being said, over at BootsnAll they do make a good argument for using Australia as a destination to begin your round the world trip. After all, it is a nice place to ease into a big trip (especially if it’s your first) with a friendly, English-speaking population and a fairly familiar and comfortable Westernized culture.
However, during my year living in Australia, I met up with two of the people I had previously befriended while traveling in South America, as they were each continuing their RTW trip in Australia, and both of them were eager to get out of Australia after spending very little time there. (more…)
It took 32 hours of straight travel to get to Chicago (including an 8 hours layover in Sydney), where I was forced to spend the night, but happy to have a hotel to finally shower and lay in a bed in an attempt to soothe my aching muscles. So many hours flying in very small and uncomfortable airplane seats, plus pushing around more than 70 pounds of luggage — the one rolling suitcase with a broken wheel — around four airports had really taken it’s toll. At this point I’d been through four airports, two in the US and two in Australia. I’d gone through security four times (as well as, of course, a long wait in immigration in LAX and a thankfully quick stroll through customs) and collected my luggage four times as well. (While I’m great at packing for regular traveling, I always overpack for living abroad. But I am NEVER taking this much stuff anywhere ever again!)
After a 19 hour layover, I finally made the last flight (my shortest at just three hours) to Fort Myers, FL where an hour drive to my parent’s house finally brought the end to my long, long journey of 54 (or 56 if you include transport to and from the airport) journey. That’s 2.25 days of almost straight travel, the first 32 of which blended together as one insanely long day from my 11pm red eye flight from Perth to my arrival in Chicago at 6pm the next day (or 6am two days later in Perth!). My trip stretched from Thursday in Perth to Saturday in Florida (which would be Sunday morning in Perth). Where most people gain a day, arriving in the US before they’d even left Australia (thank you International Date Line), I still managed to arrive home two days after I left Oz. It was a long trip. (more…)