Original post from thedebtfreejourney blog.

“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” — Gustave Flaubert

This past month we put our debt free journey on hold to travel to the Philippines and South Korea.

One of the reasons we agreed to do this despite being on a debt free journey 4 months in now is because;

  1. It’s our 25th year wedding anniversary this year and decided earlier on that we will celebrate by spending time with family, and
  2. 2. We wanted to explore 2 new places we’ve never been to before.

We’ve never been to South Korea and later on this year we’re planning on visiting France so despite being on a tight budget, we’re still moving forward with our travel plans.

Here are the reasons why Travel should be part of a Personal Development routine;


The reason we travel is so we don’t take for granted how Blessed we are to be living in America.

You see when we go out of our country and visit other lands, we immediately get a glimpse of how better off we really are as a country, as a nation, and as a people.

We broaden our horizons and are able to see how other cultures work, regardless of their circumstance.

What I mean is, in the Philippines for instance, despite the fact that majority of the population are underprivileged, it doesn’t take away from their resilience and determination.

Ordinary citizens only make the equivalent of $300/month and they make do with what they have and continue to strive and move forward; which explains why the Philippines as a nation has the highest literacy rate, currently at 96.6%worldwide, due to the culture’s high value for education, parents will do what it takes, even denying themselves, to ensure their children have a chance at a good education and get ahead.

This makes me all the more determined to up my debt free game knowing there are infinitely more people who are in worst situations, so there really is no excuse.


Travel is a great teacher as it forces us to get out of our comfort zone and meet as well as mingle with other cultures.

The best way to learn about another culture is to engage and talk to them.

In our travel to South Korea, we learned how Korean culture is geared toward discipline and national pride; citizens make it a point to help fellow citizens and they do their part to contribute to nation building by promoting peace and order as well as cleanliness.

It’s very safe to walk around late at night and it’s encouraged since a lot of night markets happen after 8 pm until the wee hours of the morning.

Being able to interact first hand with the culture, we are able to understand why to a certain degree Korean society has an advanced technological acumen, this owing to the fact that there is national pride and discipline instilled into each and everyone there.


Travel also gives us the ability to break the monotony of our routines.

As Americans, one thing we pride ourselves on is our work ethic.

This is a good and a bad thing though, good in that we are not an idle bunch and we love to get busy, bad in that when we get busy, we forget to live life or even think about life outside our own ‘cubicles’.

Travel makes us unplug from our day to day to re-energize.

As we take in new sights, sounds, taste, textures, and even weather; we shed whatever energy we have in our routines and forces us to take on a new energy which has the ability to energize us enough to get us going once we return and plug back into our ‘matrix’ if you will.


We discover new things. One good thing when we explore our ‘world’ is that we encounter new things, or at least, new to us.

For instance, in Korea, I was happily introduced to the ‘smart toilet’ and boy was I thrilled, it was quite a happy experience

now I know what the fuzz is all about, and it’s more about the way our bottoms are treated among other things

First time having a manicure pedicure in Manila, it was new to me; having my hands and feet gently massaged and cleaned, made me understand why women routinely have these done.

Who would’ve known…


As a family, the best part for us when we travel is when we have the ability to give out of our abundance. Sure, we’re on a debt free journey, and because of that, we’re abundantly weighed down by stuff.

What we normally do is pack and ship our ‘stuff’ to the Philippines and give it away to less fortunate families.

Seeing the smile on a family’s face when you give a year’s worth of clothing or used shoes that to them are more than brand new, it’s just an incomparable feeling; and further confirms that there’s a whole world out there that are far worse off than we are and would in a heartbeat trade places with us if given the chance.

It really gives our family perspective in handling our resources wisely going forward as well as put us in a giving frame of mind regardless of our circumstance because we are truly well off as compared to the rest of the world.


There’s a whole world out there just waiting to be explored. Life is too short to be spent in a box or a cubicle for that matter.

I encourage us all to break out of our shells, escape our mundane, and be part of humanity.

We’ll all be better for it, and it will teach us a lot about ourselves and the world around us.