Amidst the battle between passion and profession, a Civil Engineer Arnav Mathur couldn’t care less about getting fired from two jobs for traveling too much. After officially quitting his job in May 2016, Arnav realized that he cannot do the monotonous 9-5 job. He no longer had to plan his travels according to his leaves and could travel on his own terms. He thus made up his mind to make a living by traveling the world.
Location: Triund, Himachal Pradesh
How it started
Arnav initially started blogging on Google’s BlogSpot platform. He maintained it for a year and when things started to pick up, he migrated to his new website theETLRblog.com. ETLR stands for Eat Travel Live Repeat and that is exactly how Arnav plans to live the rest of his life. Travel to different places, indulge in local cuisines, live the life of his dreams and repeat the same cycle over again.
Despite being from a typical Indian family, where almost everyone is an engineer, and where traveling is just another hobby, Arnav decided to go out of the box, explore different places at his pace and develop steady income channels to sustain his travels.
“I was inspired by every other traveler, who is out there living their dream. If they can do it, so can I.”
Parental and social support
Arnav’s parents, like every other Indian parent, were initially skeptical about his decision to travel for a living. But, when he finally managed to receive his first month long sponsored travel blogging project in one of the biggest resort in Maldives, Sun Island Resort and Spa; they realized the hidden potential in this segment.
“With the blessings of my parents, I am heading to the UK in September 2017 for my post-graduation in International Tourism and Hospitality Management to further enhance my knowledge about the Travel sector.”
Arnav never let social pressures affect him. He always believed in living his life on his own terms and following his heart.
“I feel free when I see my colleagues stuck in the same lifestyle and job boundaries and thinking so much before making a simple decision like taking a vacation.”
Life as a travel blogger
Arnav maintains a healthy balance between travel and spending quality time with his family.
“After a long trip, I am usually in the trip hangover for a couple of days wherein I prepare all the content that I want to, work on the blog and then start planning for the next trip.”
On his journey as a traveler, he connected with many other travelers, thus making friends on the go. In the past year, he has traveled to Thailand and Maldives and he recently came back from a 10 day road trip to Leh Ladakh. He has also completed a Shillong-Cherrapunji-Guwahati circuit in the North East, a month in Varanasi-The Oldest City, and explored some places near Delhi like McLeodganj, Jibhi, Nainital, Rishikesh, Chopta, Mussoorie, Manali.
Location: McLeodganj- Triund Trek
“I took this picture when we inaugurated our new tent”
Location: Triund, Himachal Pradesh
Location: Chang La Pass, Ladakh
His most memorable experience during the past year was celebrating his birthday, getting pampered in Sun Island Resort and Spa, Maldives
“Even though I was alone, the dive school was kind enough to arrange for a deep sea dive in the morning, followed by a surprise Spa Treatment by Araamu Spa, and then a lovely cake welcomed me during dinner time. Definitely a birthday to remember.” Read the blog here
Arnav’s next trip will be to Vietnam and Cambodia in August before heading out to the UK in September.
Earning and managing expenses
Arnav believes that he still has a long way to go before he starts earning from his blog. However, he did manage to earn something from different collaborations. Some collaborations also prefer to pay him in the form of a trip, instead of money. Whenever Arnav is paid in the form of travel, he minimizes his expenses by having local food and prefers to spend on activities rather than on stay. However, for other trips, he plans a budget and tries his best to stick to that. But, at the same time always keeps some buffer cash.
“I am in a happy place as of now. However, I am putting my hands in a couple of things, which will turn into a steady income stream in the coming future.”