Experiences Alone Can Be Worth a Million Dollars

by Sean Bryant on August 2, 2013

August Blog GiveawayLife can sure be a interesting ride a lot of the time. Things don’t always go as you might have planned. You might remember a few months ago I told you a story about how  I was hit by a car as I walked across the street, when I was living in Chicago. That was a morning that changed my life forever. It really helped open my eyes to the fact that life is really quite short and you need to make sure you do the things you love in order to enjoy every moment of it.

One of the things that both my wife and I love to do is travel. We have been lucky enough to do quite a bit of it in our six years of marriage. Being a personal finance blogger I am always trying to save money however sometimes you need to consider that money is not the most important thing in life. Being able to share memories with those that you love is.

There are always going to be ways to save money on your vacation, whether it’s booking a discount hotel or taking a flight on a less expensive day. But when all is said and done, it’s the pictures that you have and the experiences that you were able to enjoy that should trump everything else.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not trying to tell you that you should go out tomorrow and book an around the world ticket. What I am trying to say is set aside a certain portion of your budget to do the things that you love to do right now.  Tomorrow is never a guarantee.

My Most Memorable Vacation

When I was growing up I always traveled a lot with my family, but never anywhere outside of the US, other than Mexico and the Caribbean.  One of the things my wife and I said we wanted to do was travel to new countries because there is so much to see and explore.

The best vacation that I have been on was a few years ago when we spent a month traveling throughout Europe. This was a trip that as a personal finance blogger I am almost embarrassed to admit to because it was not very frugal, but it was easily the greatest time of my life.  Over the course of four weeks, we spent time traveling by train through Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France, Spain and Portugal. We saw some of the most beautiful architecture and ate some amazing food.

While this trip might have set our bank account back a little, we weren’t in debt and we have some amazing memories that will be with us for the rest of our lives. Take this weekend to think about what is truly important to you in your life. What will create a lasting memory that you can share with your kids and your grandkids. Then make a plan to set it in motion.


As a little added bonus I am hosting a giveaway with some of my blogging friends where we are giving away a total of $900 to three winners to help them experience something that they love (or pay off debt). The winner will receive $500, second prize will get $300 and third prize will receive $100.

  • Expires August 21, 2013
  • Open Worldwide
  • Paid via PayPal
  • Terms and conditions are in the RaffleCopter widget
  • All entries in the RaffleCopter are optional

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The following two tabs change content below.

Sean Bryant

Sean Bryant created OneSmartDollar.com in 2011 to help pass along his knowledge of finance and economics to others. After graduating from the University of Iowa with a degree in economics he worked as a construction superintendent before jumping into the world of finance. Sean has worked on the trade desk for a commodities brokerage firm, he was a project manager for an investment research company and was a CDO analyst at a big bank. That being said he brings a good understanding of the finance field to the One Smart Dollar community. When not working Sean and he wife are avid world travelers. He enjoys spending time with his daughter Colette and dog Charlie.
  • Sounds like a wonderful trip, Sean. I would love to explore Europe for a month. I loved our cruise but the only hard part is you have limited time on land. Being able to travel at your own leisure would be so nice!

  • jo.lynette@hotmail.com

    Best vacation ever…lots of family in 3 cars loaded with toys, clothes and food driving to Kino Bay Mexico to host Christmas on the beach for the kids in the local town. My cousins, brother and I were still in Jr. High and we had a great time playing games and having a pinata party with all the kids, then we were able to help pass out food for lunch and presents for everyone. The next day one of the local families fed us…best homemade tortillas and food! And definitely the best Christmas ever…no presents for us required! :o)

  • Kyle James

    Would love to take a Europe trip like you did, sounds amazing! Maybe when my kids are older. Glad to be co-hosting with you!

  • Your Daily Finance

    Sorry about you being hit by a car when I get more time I will certainly check that post out. I would really enjoy traveling more with the family and I agree that some experiences are just worth more than money. How much money now thats a topic for discussion. The wifey and I want to travel abroad to Europe but its just not cheap. And to make matters even worse we now have a family of 5 and would have to pay someone to watch/take care of our dog for the entire trip. Glad you enjoy the month vacation in Europe.

  • Julien

    In USA some people want to visit Europe, while in Europe people dream about USA… there should be more house exchange 🙂

Previous post:

Next post: