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Going Incommunicado to Travel

[ 12 ] June 24, 2010 |

I’m a self-confessed anti technology traveller who often goes incommincadoon the road.  I don’t have an iphone nor have I ever seriously considered getting one and indeed until moving to China just this year I never had a laptop let alone travelled with one.  It’s a good thing really that Santa never got me an iphone or blackberry for Christmas, as I wouldn’t be able to help myself but use it.  It would make my life far too easy, it would be far too much of a temptation to update my status from some amazing place in an effort to try and make people jealous instead of taking the time to just enjoy the moment.

 I choose to travel!

For me traveling has always been my chance to switch off from a technologically driven lifestyle. I’ve always relished my chance to travel and go incommunicado.  When I’m stationary the Internet is addictive, a way to feed my travel obsession through writing my blog, reading others blogs and tweet chatting with other like minded people who like me are also nuts about travel.  And although I love the connections I’ve made and the friendships I’ve formed (I really do love you twitter!) Travelling Sash and technology just don’t mix!

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The proof is in the history…

When I went on my first trip abroad in 2008 I had grand plans to use the Internet to stay connected with my life back home on the cheap.  I set up an online journal that was also connected to my international sim card so that every time I sent a text it would plot my location on a map (now I think about it rather intrusive and creepy).  The idea was to remember my journey, and clearly the exact times I was at certain locations not to mention put my families mind at ease.  Now that all would have been well and good had I’d actually used it!

I remember doing my first journal entry.  I was sitting in the Contiki basement in London using the 1£/30 mins Internet to write what was clearly going to be my amazing online journal.  After two months of travelling Europe that entry from my first day in London was my first and last entry for the entire trip!  In fact the entire time I was in Europe I probably only used the Internet 6 times and at least 4 of those times was during my first week to check the weather (pointless when in England).  Having a phone was almost pointless.  I think the longest I went without replying to a txt was 10 days during my time in Greece and Albania, in all fairness to me I didn’t always have reception.  But lets just say when I got home I had one not so happy mother.

My second trip to South East Asia in 2009 was scarcely any different.  This time I didn’t even bother with an online journal, I knew I wouldn’t use it.  I was there to travel, see things, experience things not waste all my time and money on the net!  The last thing I wanted to do after a hot day’s sightseeing was sit in an Internet café and write about my day.  Instead I favoured going back to my room, pumping up the air con and just letting it all flow out the old fashion way on paper with ink.

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My Predicament

But now I’ve got myself into a predicament.  I have a travel blog and magazine and despite not doing this writing thing for website hits and RSS subscribers I would still like to keep it up and running.   I’ve put in far too much work to let it fizzle out all because I’m having too much fun without worrying about updating my blog and twitter. 

  

So what’s this girl to do to not jeopardize her technology free travel lifestyle that she has thoroughly enjoyed in the past?…

  

Put wasted time to good use!

All those long train journeys will be put to good use documenting my adventures and typing up what has previously been penned in my notebook.  It makes me feel better to think that I’m not wasting what could be valuable adventure time and instead using wasted transport time to get stuff done. 

  China Train

Above:  My new office.

Get Organised

Having a reserve of posts scheduled to go out is really going to put my mind at ease.  In the last few weeks leading up to my upcoming travels around China I’ve been madly typing up and editing all my adventures and stories from the past few months and getting them ready to post during the time i’ll be traveling and largely incommunicado.    

Schedule Time

I’m going to schedule  time each week to use the Internet and try to stick to it.  Limiting my time on the internet and scheduling it at times that won’t get in the way of my travels at times when I will have easy access to wifi will keep me on my incommunicado track.  This way I can  keep  at least a little up to date with the world and the goings on of my blog without being tempted to spend every evening using the wifi!

It’s all about balance

At the end of the day it’s all about balance.  For me balance means spending the minimal amount of time on the net!  Now of course if I was travelling for more than 6-8 weeks, then overall I would have to dedicate more time to getting on line, at the same time I wouldn’t be so confined to certain dates and doing certain things by certain times.

I’m Switching off as off the 2nd of July

I can’t wait to be able to switch off and go incommunicado at least for a little bit from the 2ndof July.  Now I still will be present in the online world though certainly not everyday for hours on end and actually not every day for that matter!  I relish the chance to sit back, relax and let the scheduled posts just roll out.  Now maybe that makes me a bad blogger, but quite frankly I couldn’t care less.  I’m about the stories, and there are only so many stories you can find in an internet café!

How do you balance your travel and online life?  Leave your comments below.

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About onurwaytravel: Colin has been travelling the world with his young family for the past 2 and half years. He runs a couple of websites all revolve around travel, family travel and digital nomadism. His websites include http://ourtravellifestyle.com, http://vagabondfamily.org, http://nunomad.com and now http://on-our-way-travel.com. View author profile.

Comments (12)

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  1. Eli says:

    I think it is a good idea to limit time online while travelling. I actually just discovered the schedule post function in wordpress. So while we’re out and set loose in the world we’re going to just pick one day a week to put up our posts and just keep them on a schedule. Then we get six days a week to immerse ourselves completely in our surrounding. I like the way you’re thinking!
    .-= Eli´s last blog ..Weekend Update: 6/19/2010 =-.

  2. Sasha says:

    Thanks for the comment Eli! :) Yep that’s totally the idea, minimum time worry about the internet, maximum time enjoying what previously we had spent all out time gazing at on the net!!!

  3. Matt
    Twitter:
    says:

    I can’t imagine traveling without a laptop – let alone an iPhone. Yet I think it’s important to to able to detach yourself from technology so you don’t miss out on the experiences you go traveling for.
    .-= Matt´s last blog ..Friday Travel Photo- Reykjavik- Iceland =-.

  4. Sasha says:

    Well i’ve also been far too stingy to ever get an iphone, every penny i’ve ever earned has been spent away in some other country! But my laptop is now my best friend who i’ve become far to reliant on over the past few months. So it will be good to have a little holiday from technology and just switch off, though I don’t know how I’m gonna fair resisting free hostel wifi!

  5. ayngelina
    Twitter:
    says:

    Bulk writing tends to work well for me. Every week or so I get lazy and don´t feel like doing anything so I try to write a few posts at once so I can just edit and post later in the week.
    .-= ayngelina´s last blog ..Does my brain only have room for two languages =-.

  6. Sasha says:

    Totally agree, it’s a good way to kill the laziness, write when all the inspirations there, post it later!

  7. Elise says:

    Great Article. I think about that all the time. How much time should we spend working and writing? I only wish I could write on public transport like you, i get far too travel sick!! When it comes down to it all, just like you, posting our articles on different days is lifesaver for both us and our website!
    .-= Elise´s last blog ..HELP US RAISE 1000 IN CAMBODIA =-.

  8. Sasha says:

    Hi Elise, thanks for the comment. Well my attempt to get work done on public transport so far has been a FAIL! I’ve just got off a 20hr train journey and didn’t get any work done what’s so ever! Though having things scheduled so far has really been a lifesaver for sure!

  9. Jason says:

    Sasha, Great post, and I can really relate to your thoughts above, as I am in a similar predicament. Although a little older than yourself, alot of my earlier travel was from an era where we didn’t have the choice, but I do think that it’s imporatant to switch off. I recently wrote a post regarding this exact same point, and how modern communications have killed ‘Poste Resatante’. As you have pointed out, it is maintaining the balance that is the key.

  10. Sasha says:

    Hi Jason, I’m loving switching off while traveling. I’ve thus far managed to stay fairly switched of limiting myself to just checking my emails and making bookings, steering clear of social networking which is so hard to get off once your on! Though it’s great to be able to chill in the common room, laptop on lap cruising the internet planing the next steps of the adventure. I think finally I’ve figured out a perfect balance! :)

  11. [...] absent from the social media scene for the past couple of months, which means mission success going incommunicado to travel!  From July 2 up until the end of August I was backpacking around the amazing country that is [...]

  12. Intern China says:

    Sasha, wow I love your new office! It looks so modern :) I think I still prefer to take a pen while travelling…. I can leave the bloggin’ for later…

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