I am 29 years old, was born, raised and educated in Macedonia. I am currently based in Dubai.
I am not entirely sure when did I start traveling and why on the first place. I don't come from a family of travelers. I did go on vacations with my parents as a child but I was limited to destination within Macedonia and the Balkan counties. It's possible that because I grew up in a small town that I am especially curious about the world and what is have to offer. These days, it's a true passion and I'm certainly addicted.
I first start traveling in 2007 during my university years. I remember my first big solo trip was to United States. I was dying to embrace a life of freedom on the road and experiencing the beauty of the world, meeting new people and having wild adventures. This was all about, to discover more about the world and in this way particularly more about myself. I was addicted after few months and have never stop traveling since than. I found a way to make it my lifestyle. I also start meeting so many people while in USA, both other travelers and locals, people that otherwise would never have met if I wasn't traveling. The fact alone fascinating me to the point where I could't imagine going home to a life that did not involve meeting, interacting with and learning from so many new people, from parts of the world I knew little about, so often.
I always fund my travels by working abroad. It is actually the best way to travel the world long-term and cheaply. I found mostly jobs in hospitality. I usually source out work before I arrive in a new country, The benefits of this is that I often receive perks such as free flight and accommodation.
I like to travel slow and stay in one place for at least one year. I don't like jumping around to lots of deferent cities/countries in a short space of time. I think my long-term ideal would be to have two or three home-bases around the world, and spend significant time in each of them every year, with a trip some place new thrown in every year for good measure. If I had to pick some places right now that I would like to spend more time in, Buenos Aires, Tokyo and Melbourne would be high on the list.
As many people say, the first step is always the most important and you really need to build the confidence to convince yourself that the goal of long-term travel is not a crazy fantasy, but a realistic lifestyle option instead. Once you know that and you make the commitment to creating a lifestyle of travel, you will be amazed at the doors that open up for you.
I would recommended that people look at the things they need rather than the things they want. Also look into living and traveling through places that are not as expensive. I am not saying that those place are not scary to take plunge and start living your dreams, but I can attest to the fact that is the best decision you will ever made. Just do it! You never know where a "hello' or a simple handshake may lead you so get out there and talk to as many people as you can!