This week we hear from the incredibly accomplished Krista, also known as Go4theGlobe – a blogger and world traveler, who hails from Seattle, Washington.
Below Krista tells us of her travel inspirations, her means of keeping financially afloat whilst on the road, in addition to the lessons she’s learned along the way. Be sure to continue learning about Krista, by following the links at the end of the interview!
My name is Krista Staudinger and I grew up in the beautiful Pacific Northwest of the USA. I attended the University of Washington in Seattle where I studied journalism and Spanish. I spent a semester abroad in Cádiz, Spain, where I lived with a Spanish host family, studied at a Spanish university and worked part-time as a bartender. After graduating from college, I worked for the Seattle Mariners in media relations, which was a dream come true since I am a big baseball and Mariners fan. I then moved to Sydney, Australia to work for the Australian Baseball League. After the baseball season ended, I traveled the east coast of Australia and returned home to Seattle where I got a job in social media, events and marketing for Microsoft. During that time I also became a certified yoga instructor. I saved my earnings for three years before taking a leap of faith to quit my job to travel the world full-time for a year. My boyfriend Matt joined me and we visited 27 countries on 5 continents in 2017. I started my travel blog go4theglobe during the trip and was named SWISSGEAR’s 2018 Travel Ambassador (along with my boyfriend), so I’ve continued to travel the world. I am currently based outside of Seattle where I teach yoga, travel and blog!
What inspired you to start traveling?
I have been traveling for as long as I can remember, starting with family vacations as a kid. My first big trip was to Europe with my Spanish department after I graduated high school and I fell in love with the culture, architecture, and travel lifestyle. That inspired me to continue to study Spanish so I could study abroad in college and travel more!
What was your first travel memory?
I can’t pinpoint my first official travel memory but my earliest travel memories are of taking road trips with my family as a kid. My two siblings and I would be in the backseat we would play car games, sing along to music, and my mom would have goody bags she would give us with little toys and treats as we reached milestones along the way!
Did you have any misconceptions of travel before you left?
I learned this early on but the biggest misconception I had before I traveled for long periods of time is that travel is easier and more glamorous than it really is. Of course there are a lot of easy and glamorous moments, but it can take a lot of work to get where you want to be in a foreign country and it’s not always glamorous (typically the opposite) to get there.
What has been the biggest lesson you have learned through your travels?
There are two big lessons I’ve learned through travel.
The first lesson is about privilege, especially as an English speaker. When I first started traveling around Europe in college (while I was studying in Spain), I would fly off to new countries with friends all the time. I met a German girl in Spain who spoke English and she was telling me how it was her dream to visit the United States but she was too scared to because she was worried her English wasn’t good enough. She was telling me this in English that was better than my own Spanish, and there I was living in Spain and traveling to other countries without thinking twice about what their native language was, as I knew I would be able to get by with English. This was very eye-opening for me and I realized I couldn’t take this privilege for granted, and I also do my best to learn local words and phrases when I travel.
The second lesson is that no matter where someone is from, humans are all more alike than they are different. We all want and need the same things, even if the ways in which we attain them are vastly different. I’ve found these things to be food, water, shelter, love, faith, and companionship. For example, our type of food and the way we attain food may be different, but it’s a big part of our lives and culture.
What are some of your tips for traveling cheaply?
Walk and take public transportation whenever possible! Taxi cabs and Uber’s add up quickly. Walking is not only free but it is healthy and a great way to explore a new place. You get to see more when you’re on foot!
What is your go-to travel album? Any particular song that stokes up some special travel memories?
I don’t have a go-to travel album, but I’m a huge Taylor Swift fan. Whatever her latest album is it is typically the one that’s on my phone and that I play when I travel. All of her albums remind me of where I was when I first heard them. For example, the first single of her new album Reputation reminds me of Albania, while the rest of it reminds me of the Philippines, because that’s where I was when I heard the songs. Two songs that will always remind me of my 2017 year-long trip around the world are Despacito (the Spanish version without Justin Bieber, it was playing everywhere in Latin America for the first six months of our trip before Bieber joined in) and Shape of You by Ed Sheehan, as my boyfriend and I heard them the most throughout our trip.
Who is your ideal travel companion and why?
I have two! My boyfriend Matt is my ideal travel companion as we traveled around the world together for a year and made traveling our lifestyle together. We spent every moment of every day together and are so comfortable together (probably too comfortable sometimes haha). We are a great travel team! My sister Kathryne has been my longest travel buddy and she is my ideal travel companion since we have very similar interests and like to do the same things. Kathryne is so much fun and she always has a positive attitude! We like the same foods so we can split meals (or order two and share!). I love Matt and Kathryne, which makes them both ideal travel companions, it’s always nice to share travel memories with someone you love.
What are three things you would never travel without?
My passport, my LUMIX G7 camera and my GoPro Hero 6.
What are the biggest hurdles you have had to overcome whilst traveling? What helped you overcome them?
I ran out of blank passport pages 9 months into my year-long trip around the world. It started a chain reaction of hurdles, from getting an emergency passport in Germany, to not being able to travel to India due to my emergency passport, to being detained overnight at the airport in Bali and being deported back to Singapore, to having to cancel flights home through China. I have a whole blog series on this series of misadventures if you’re curious to learn more! Doing my best to stay positive and calm, focusing on my blessings rather than my hurdles (having the mentality that it could always be worse so being thankful it isn’t), and being flexible helped me overcome these hurdles.
What is some advice you would offer to a would-be traveler who has not yet left home alone?
My advice to a would-be world traveler is to have an open mind! Be open to new experiences, try new things, and meet new people. Try not to over-plan (the more you plan, the more opportunities you have for your plans to go astray, but sometimes better things happen when things don’t go as planned!).
How do you sustain yourself financially whilst on the road?
Before I left to travel the world for a year, I saved money for three years and worked two jobs. I typically travel off my savings, although I have also taught a few free yoga classes on the road for tips! I am also starting to make money through sponsorships with my blog.
Where have you eaten your most memorable meal? What was it? What made it memorable?
My most memorable meal was at my friend’s wedding on the coast of northern Spain. It was a seven-course surf n’ turf meal that I shared at a table with my boyfriend and some of my closest friends that I hadn’t seen in a while (it was in the middle of my year-long trip around the world). The first course was the most delicious lobster (the best I’ve ever eaten) that I still dream about to this day. There was an alcoholic lemon sorbet in the middle to cleanse the pallet, and I love lemon sorbet too. Amazing food with amazing company is the recipe for the perfect meal!
Describe your ideal day?
My ideal day would be spent with people I love and involve a combination of great food (definitely ice cream!), a hike to a beautiful viewpoint, doing yoga, spending time on the water (whether that’s on a beach or a boat), watching a beautiful sunset, and dancing!
How do you research the countries you visit? Is there a particular method you use? Or do you travel on a whim?
I research online (Google searches) through blogs and also Instagram. I try to ask for recommendations from friends and locals when possible. I don’t have a particular method, it really depends on the trip. When my boyfriend and I were traveling around the world for a year, we didn’t plan too much in advance. We found out a lot about places by being in them!
Where are you off to next?
I just returned home from Malta and am headed to my favorite place in my home state next, Lake Chelan! I have a big international trip coming up in October through my travel ambassadorship with SWISSGEAR, but the location hasn’t been announced yet, so follow my adventures to find out where I’ll head next!
Remember you can follow Krista’s travels and show her some love at: