Who's out there now?

Who’s Out There Now? Craig and Linda

Written By: jeff

Posted On: August 17th, 2010

Antofagasta, Chile, career break travel adventures in Chile

Craig and Linda in Antofagasta, Chile. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

In this week’s ¨Who´s Out There Now¨ interview, we bring to you Craig and Linda from the popular Indie Travel Podcast. The travelers have made travel a lifestyle.  And while not career breakers in the traditional sense of the term, they have broken the notion about what a career has to be.  They’ve been traveling since 2006 and started podcasting almost immediately.  Since then, their new media empire has conquered the audio, video and written media, including their recent e-book, The Art of Solo Travel.

1.  So, where in the world are you answering these questions?

I’m sitting in the Noller Espresso Bar in the trendy Haga district of Goteborg, Sweden. It’s nice, some light jazz playing, good coffee and a witty owner.

la boca, buenos aires argentina, career break travel adventures in argentina

Craig and Linda in the La Boca neighborhood of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

2.  You were in South America earlier this year, and then popped through New York on your way to Europe.  What’s next before heading back to New Zealand?

No idea, really. We have tickets from Europe down to Kuala Lumpur in September. Before that we’ll probably visit Norway, Spain, Austria, Italy and the UK. After that we’ll probably head to Vietnam and work our way south. But that could change tomorrow. It’s certainly a different plan from the one we had at the start of the week.

3.  How many times have you actually circled the globe on your trips?

That’s hard to say. When we left New Zealand in February 2006 we didn’t return until Easter 2009, but we only visited Europe, Australia and a tiny bit of Asia. This time around we went NZ > South America (+ New York) > Europe and we’ll probably go Asia > Australia > New Zealand … so I guess we’re yet to circle it, but trying hard.

Kuala Lumpur, Bukit Nanas Reserve, career break travel adventures in Malaysia

Linda in Kuala Lumpur. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

4.  When you first started podcasting in 2006, did you ever imagine the success you’ve had in influencing travelers, where they go, how they travel?

No, not really. We obviously wanted to grow an audience as talking to yourself isn’t so much fun! Things like winning the Lonely Planet award for travel podcasting and the growth we’ve had after that made a big difference. We’re really excited about the group of people who come together around Indie Travel Podcast. Our Facebook group is really vibrant, with hundreds of likes and comments every month. We get tons of email and tweets asking for our advice, and tens of thousands of downloads and pageviews each month. All in all, it makes for a great community of people excited about travel.

5.  Backpacking, flashpacking, career break. How do you characterize your style of travel?

I don’t know if there’s any label that fits. At times I feel like a backpacker; at others like I’m working too hard! We blend everything together to make a unique, independent lifestyle – which is where the “indie” fits in: unsigned, unfettered, having fun doing what we love.

Camino de Santiago, career break travel adventures in Spain

Craig on the Camino de Santiago, Spain. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

6.  What was your first ¨We´re not in Kansas (Auckland) anymore¨ moment back in 2006?

I remember the first few days we spent in England. It was the second destination on the “big” trip and was basically an extended stopover on the way to Malta. We were at the pub with a couple of friends and, as we sat there, it started snowing outside … Not something you’d find in Auckland! We immediately ran from the pub and spent a ridiculous couple of minutes playing in the falling snow. Freedom had arrived.

7.  What´s been your most ¨local¨ experience so far over the years?

That’s a really tough one, since we move too fast and seldom have a chance to assimilate. That said, we’ve been to local wine tasting events, spent time with families in tiny Austrian villages, got drunk on moonshine with Croatian farmers, cooked Chilean specialities with and for Chilean families, spent hours over BBQs, played backgammon and drunk tea in the Turkish countryside and everything in between. I have no idea how to pick a “most” out of that.

8.  What has been your most embarrassing moment?

Not so much embarrassing, but I once tried ordering a glass of red wine with lunch in a Slovakian restaurant. We had already flummoxed the service staff with our horrid Slovakian, but we were at a loss when it came to asking for wine. I tried “wine” in every European language I knew (and I know how to say “wine” in many) to no avail.  Body language did the trick, but when it came to specifying “red” I made the fatal mistake of pointing to a tomato on my plate. There was a look of puzzlement, then a dawning smile, and my waitress disappeared behind the bar.  Five minutes later and she reappeared with … the biggest bowl of freshly cut tomatoes you’ve ever seen in your life. Apparently the look of shock on my face was enough to stop her in her tracks. The laughter from Linda was certainly enough to make every other dinner in the place look over to see what was happening.

Bath, England, career break travel adventures in England

Craig and Linda at the Roman Baths in Bath, England. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

9.  What makes a place memorable and special to you.  What are some of your favorites so far?

People and place both play an important role in creating a special time. Favourite places might include a lazy week in Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic; wine tasting in Champagne, including visiting one of two phylloxera-free vineyards in all of Europe; exploring Kuelap in Northern Peru; backpacking the Yasawa Islands in Fiji or travelling New Zealand’s South Island. Memorable people are too many to mention.

10. You have lots of experience traveling as a couple.  So, what makes for a good travel partner?

I think the most important characteristic is good communication, including saying things like, “I’m too tired to make a good decision right now,” which can save you from all sorts of hassles on the road.  Being aware of each other’s pressure points (and avoiding hitting them!) is also important, so you know when to give in, when to press your point, and when to keep negotiating.

11. What´s your secret for getting the most out of your journeys?

That’s something I’m still figuring out. Creating good video footage is something that’s catching my attention right now, but creating a strong narrative in video is sometimes easier than creating a narrative arc for your own life.  Couchsurfing definitely helps us to get in touch with locals and do less touristy stuff. If you’re not travelling to tick “have seen” boxes, I can’t recommend anything better than Couchsurfing.

12.  I know that you meet up with your listeners often on the road.  What was the oddest/funniest encounter you’ve ever had with a fan?

In fact, it’s only something we’ve started doing regularly in the last few months, but we’re really keen to do it more. It’s been amazing meeting people, helping them with their travel fears and dreams, swapping stories and drinking away. When we were in New York recently, one listener, Christopher, offered us a place to stay for a few nights. It was an amazing offer and we took it up immediately. When we met Christopher on the first morning we headed to a diner for breakfast. Linda was shocked when the waiter asked us for coffee, got a yes, then walked away. “It’s like he asked if we wanted food,” she said, “coffee is a type of drink, not the name of one”. We were both shocked, however, when Christopher immediately responded with, “Yes, I know what kind of coffee you drink: Flat white and espresso.” He wasn’t wrong, but it was amazing to think that our listeners actually <em>listened</em> to the show!

Warwick Castle, England, career break travel adventures in England

Craig and Linda at the Warwick Castle in England. Copyright IndieTravelPodcast.com

13.  Finally, our lightening round.

a.  Best dish you´ve found so far - A plate of cold-cut meat and cheese, Austria (Craig) / Pebre (Linda)

b.  Most exotic food eaten – If I knew what half the exotic things were called, I’d be able to tell you (Craig) / Zebra (Linda)

c.  Most breathtaking moment – The “Nevis” bungy, Queenstown, New Zealand (Craig) / Salar de Uyuni (Linda)

d.  Biggest disappointment – Paris (Craig) / Paris (Linda)

e.  Most memorable place – Cesky Krumlov (Craig) / Camino de Santiago (Linda)

f.  Most memorable person – A street-food seller in Macau. I still have no idea what she sold us; and sometimes wake up dreaming about it. (Craig) / The smelliest man in Malta (Linda)

g.  Best thing to have on a long bus ride - Audiobook (Craig) / Study Spanish (Linda)

h. Worst thing to have on a long bus ride – diarrhea (craig) / A full bladder (Linda)

i.  Best thing you pack – A 13” MacBook Pro (Craig) / Books (Linda)

j.  Dumbest thing you’ve ever packed – A sleeping back rated to -20 celcius. Never used it. / Books (Linda)

k.  Place you wish you could´ve stayed longer - Berlin (Craig) / South America (Linda)

If you aren’t already, you can follow Craig and Linda online at IndieTravelPodcast, on Facebook and on Twitter @indietravel.

Every week, Career Break Secrets profiles a different traveler or traveling couple who are embracing the ¨Because LIfe Is Out There TM¨ travel spirit.  These are people who have taken the plunge to embark on a career break and are currently traveling the world.

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2 Responses to “Who’s Out There Now? Craig and Linda”

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Craig Martin, dohop and Indie Travel Podcast, Jeff Jung. Jeff Jung said: Who's Out There Now? It's Craig and Linda from the Indie Travel Podcast Read about their #travel story…. http://fb.me/DTjqDdmM [...]

  2. kathy says:

    Craig and Linda are amazing! I can’t believe they’ve been podcasting since before I had even heard of podcasts. Clearly they are a fascinating couple with lots of great travel tips! I like their advice about how to get the most out of your vacation; that’ super important, especially in the U.S. where we get a piddly couple weeks off a year. Definitely I like to check out the famed attractions when I visit a new place (mostly they’re famous for a good reason), but I totally think that travel is about more than just checking off sights on a list. That’s why I like travel networks like Tripping (http://www.tripping.com), because they make it easy for me to meet locals when I’m traveling.

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