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Epic Bike Quest & Failed Mountain Summit Leads Student to “Do More Than Exist”

It's natural to want to give back when someone saves your life. Ethan Maurice thought he was going to be a doctor in order to return the life-saving favor—but then he had another idea.

A brush with death changed my life. At sixteen, I was bitten by the wrong mosquito. I went from being a totally healthy kid to a full on grand mal seizure brought on by a rare viral infection of my brain and spinal fluid. After suffering a stroke, three days in a coma, many more seizures, and nine days in the intensive care unit, I emerged with significant brain damage.

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“He didn’t have a death wish, he had a life wish”: The Risk-Taking Legacy of Evel Knievel

On a long flight recently I watched a fascinating documentary about Evel Knievel, the 1970s-era stuntsman who set out to jump the Grand Canyon in a motorcycle.

I was only going to watch a few minutes, but I got hooked and kept going. Without spoiling it for you, the greatest lesson I took from the film was that Evel Knievel wasn’t actually that great of a motorcycle rider. He was a decent rider who became an incredible stuntsman risk-taker.

That’s where the fame and fortune came from: he never won a lot of motorcycle races, but he took risks and attempted feats that no one else would dare. Being fearless can kill you, of course, but it also has its benefits.

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The 12 Most Common Questions I Get About Traveling the World (Part II)

I’m no longer going to every country in the world (mission accomplished), but I’m still traveling at least 200,000 miles a year.

As such, I get a lot of questions over and over, both from people who want to travel far and wide and those who just want to learn a few things to make their lives easier.

This series of three posts provides some attempted As to the Qs.

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How to Live in Fear

Are you tired of being courageous and fed up with bravery? Seeking an alternative to risk-taking?

Not to worry. Choosing to live in fear is both easy and safe. Simply follow a few simple guidelines, and you'll live comfortably ever after.

Keep calm and carry on. Beware of danger, true love, and real life.

Play it safe. Never charge down a mountain. Don't run, don't leap, don't go too fast. Be wary of opportunities and new perspectives. Above all: stay the course.

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8 Easy Actions to Kickstart Your Way to Free Travel

When you’re just starting to learn about free travel or travel hacking, it’s easy to get overwhelmed in a deluge of information and recommendations.

But fear not! Here’s a current and highly practical list of things you can do right now to kickstart your way to the trip of your dream.

Bonus: most of these actions are very simple to complete, and almost all of them are FREE.

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Introducing WDS Connect: Join Us in Portland this August!

If you’ve read the blog for a while, you probably know about WDS, also known as the World Domination Summit (modestly titled). For the past five years a small team and I have produced this summer gathering in Portland, Oregon, with thousands of interesting people who attend from all over the world.

Last year was our five-year anniversary, and we decided to try something new for 2016. The main-stage weekend (now called “360”) has limited attendance of 1,000 people and is already sold out.

However, we’re also creating an all-new experience for everyone else who wasn’t able to get that ticket. This new experience is called WDS Connect.... and you can now sign up to join us!

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A Better Way to Think About Traveling for Nearly Free

16572590216_0d1b6a2665_z Readers who are learning about travel hacking tend to have lots of questions about what their miles and points are worth. I’m the first to say that I’m not the best at determining a specific valuation. I have a CPA to help with my taxes, I hardly ever check website statistics or any other analytics, and math isn't my strong suit.

So when it comes to valuation, I tend to look to some general rules instead of getting hyper specific. By far the most important rule is: travel hacking helps me have amazing experiences.

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2016 Dining Dash Coming Up! Visit 12 Restaurants, Earn Miles for the Rest of the Year

If you aren’t tired from stuffing envelopes for hotel points, there’s an all-new travel hacking adventure coming up on Friday. You can join us from anywhere in the U.S. for this one.

Two years ago, I co-created the "Dining Dash." We went to 12 restaurants in a single day, all in pursuit of “running the table” on earning all the qualifying stops we’d need to earn extra Frequent Flyer miles when dining at many other restaurants for a whole year.

Last year we repeated the adventure together, and ended up in a bar (our 12th stop!) with a dozen other local friends and readers.

Well, a new year means it’s time to qualify yet again ... so the Dining Dash is coming back!

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“Don’t Make Decisions Based on Ego”: A Year-Long, Cross-Country Motorcycle Journey

For three years, Mallory Paige and her dog Baylor traveled the country in a cherry red VW van. Now, they travel a little lighter: by motorcycle (for Mallory) and sidecar (for Baylor) for a year-long project, Operation Moto Dog.

When I live in the framework of kaizen, it reminds me that moving on to the next thing — with thought and intention — is a good thing. The goal of life is not to become stagnant, but to appreciate that life is change. Even though change can be challenging, uncomfortable and stressful in the moment, ultimately it’s where the richest lessons and experiences lie.
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The Global Yogi: Long-Term Travel through Five Continents

Michelle6 Michelle Taffe travels worldwide, taking in yoga and experiences wherever she goes.

I was born in Australia, but I identify more as a 'global citizen.' From an early age I knew that the world of normal jobs was not for me. By age 30, the longest I’d stayed at one job was six months (and that felt like a long time!).

As a result, I spent years figuring out a plan to combine work and travel into one fluid means of self employment, before finally becoming the Global Yogi in 2010. Since then, I share knowledge and experience of yoga and spiritual practice with yogis worldwide, and travel as much as I’d like.

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Final WDS 2016 Ticket Sales Open Wednesday, February 10

19046743014_4e6660241b_z For six (six!) years now, our volunteer team has produced a global adventure that takes place every year in Portland. This year will be our best year ever—and you should be there!

We’ll begin the FINAL ROUND of main-stage ticket sales for WDS 2016 on Wednesday, February 10th, starting at 9am PST. We offer all tickets on a first-come, first-served basis, and we don’t hold back any tickets for sale at the event itself.

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Learning, Connecting, and Asking : On the Road with Derek Loudermilk

A scientist turned world traveler, Derek Loudermilk has put research on hold, and discovered he loves waking up and going to work every day in a completely different country and field.

I love that travel allows you to have a "New Years Resolution" moment whenever you want it. Simply start the new habits you hope to cultivate anytime you arrive in a new place!

I also love immersing myself in a culture by staying somewhere for 3-12 months. It’s so cool when you get to the point when your local café knows your "usual," when you don't have to pull out a map, and when you can show new people around.

One of the main reasons I travel is that it gives me a beginner’s mindset. When I get to a new destination and notice all kinds of little things that are different than back at home—maybe it’s the color of mailboxes or the crazy amount of exposed telephone cables—I get to see the world differently, and new situations force me to creatively problem solve.

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Adventure Is Worthwhile In Itself

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"The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward. Adventure is worthwhile in itself."
-Amelia Earhart

You often hear about how we regret the things we don’t do more than the things we do. Looking back at the experience of traveling the world, this belief shines through whatever hardship I encountered.

Sure, I can remember the struggles. I can remember sleeping on the ground, running out of money, missing my flights. I remember not being sure if I’d make it, if I’d have to give up somewhere.

If I think about it, I can remember sweating it out in Eritrea, detained by the police overnight before I was put on a plane to Cairo. I remember flying to Angola and Pakistan without the required visa, wondering what would happen on the other side.

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