I’ve just been reading all the fascinating comments left on the ‘Carry On Abroad’ blog entry from people who’ve retired to all kinds of exotic places, not just Spain, which has long been popular, but Mumbai in India, Thailand and the Philippines. Wow. What an amazing experience that must be. And the encouragement I took from the comments was that while there might be challenges and it might not be for everyone, most of you are all having a great time. Good luck to you and keep the comments coming.
An exciting exotic retirement contrasts hugely with the grey English skies outside my window. Where has the freak February sunshine gone? It’s naughty, but I have to confess that the lousy weather and tales of retirement in the sun have me dreaming of going on holiday. But if you’re living frugally, how can you? Even staying somewhere in the UK costs almost as much as going abroad these days. At least there’s only the two of us – I don’t know how families manage. Holidays must cost a fortune when there are children too, especially if you can only go during school holidays. And according to Age Concern one in five pensioners haven’t been on holiday in five years.
Camping is one faint possibility. DJ likes walking and has been trying to get me to go camping with him for years, but I can’t say I’m keen. I’ve got a dodgy back and don’t relish spending the night sleeping on bumpy ground. I went to Glastonbury a few years ago – I’m sure purists would say it’s not proper camping – and took an inflatable mattress with me! But maybe I should give it another chance.
An alternative could be staying with friends or family. I remember when I was ten and we’d just moved house and my parents were pretty skint, Philip, a family friend who lived in Norfolk, did us a great kindness – he stayed with a friend and let us borrow his house by the seaside for free for a week. What a kind thing to do. I remember it was so clean and tidy – we were terrified we’d drop something on the immaculate carpets!
Of course we could just take a week off work at home and potter around doing things. DJ & I did that a few years ago – we pretended to be tourists in London, visiting Kew Gardens, Greenwich, the Cabinet War Rooms and going on tour buses, but it wasn’t all that cheap and it’s not quite the same as getting away from it all and relaxing on a beach somewhere.
Then again, there’s the guy who’s walking to India without any money and plans to work in exchange for food and help along the way. A wonderful idea but not sure my control-freak nature could handle that though!
Are you going on holiday this year or are the costs simply too much? Any ideas for a frugal break?