About eight years ago, Michael began to hone his Excel spread sheet skills. He has always loved data - and the adage that "Numbers are your friend". It turns out his penchant for rows and columns has come in very handy in his dual roles as: Chief Travel Planner and Protector of the Budget for The Senior Nomads.
You can ask the man anything and he'll the have numbers to back it up. How many places have we stayed? What's our average spend per day? How many airlines have we flown? What animals did we see on safari? You can even ask him to recap the scores for our ongoing battles of Scrabble, Backgammon, Dominoes and Cribbage.
Recently I asked Michael to "run some numbers" for a interview with Fortune.com about our 1,000th night in an Airbnb. His recap was so perfect, I thought I would just share his report:
Over the course of four years of Senior Nomad travel (almost 1,500 nights), we have visited 68 countries and well over 200 cities. Our travels have taken us from Cape Town to Copenhagen, Moscow to Mexico City, and Havana to Helsinki. To get from A to B we've taken trains, planes, buses, boats and the occasional automobile. Almost 50% of the trips have been by air, having taken almost 100 flights on 37 different airlines. Inter-city trains account for about 25% of our travel, buses are next at 15%, ferries get 5% and the remainder is made up of assorted ground transportation including rental cars, ride sharing services like BlaBlaCar and long distance taxis like our recent 4-hour drive from Almaty, Kazakhstan to Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan.
Once we arrive in a new city our primary mode of transportation is on foot. I estimate we walk an average of 8,000 steps a day. So over the four years, the total distance we have covered is the equivalent of walking from Seattle to New York....and back! Although we use public transportation as much as we can, we have used Uber more than we used to because we've been in cities where it's particularly helpful in getting around language/currency issues as well as in unsafe situations.
Altogether, we have slept in 200 different beds, stood under 200 different showers, and have had over 55 different phone numbers since leaving Seattle on July 7, 2013 - Michael
As you can see Michael keeps meticulous records detailing our travel and all that entails. In fact, on our website seniornomads.com, every one of our stays are listed (in alphabetical order, of course), along with the Airbnb links under the TRAVEL tab.
To back up to all of this electronic data, we have our trusty written journals where we record the day's activities, tape in memorabilia, and note our expenses for the day - we also include the receipts. Michael is big on receipts. so I am no longer shy about asking for "le ticket" for my cafe au lait, and proudly bring it home to my hero.
On Saturday, July 22 we did indeed spent our 1,000th night in a beautiful Airbnb in Strasbourg, France. That city now makes the Top 10 List (managed by Michael, of course). The other 500 nights along the way were spent with family and friends, in a couple dozen short hotel stays, one horrible hostel in Milan, a few amazing weeks on safari, and one very enjoyable overnight train ride from Cape Town to Johannesburg in South Africa. We still travel with just two pillows.
Thanks for following along,
Debbie and Michael
The Senior Nomads