Retirement; like your parents, but way cooler
In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age
of 38. Now, into their 4th decade of this
financially independent lifestyle, they invite you
to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli
We have known Dale Knight for over a decade. An inveterate world traveler,
Dale has logged more miles and seen more
than we can personally name.
is good for the mind and soul, and Dale shares his wisdom and perspective
interview of Dale, click here. For a
COVID Travel Update Interview with Dale, click here.
Dale on the island of Koh Samet,
Retire Early Lifestyle: It has been a decade since we interviewed you on the beach in
Thailand. What have you been doing the last ten years?
Dale Knight: I've continued to
travel as much as possible, expanding my horizons as well as revisiting
favorite cities and renewing acquaintances with friends scattered around the
world. I've even managed to catch up with
the two of you a few times. In
and in Vietnam.
I haven't lost the lust for travel in the least. If
anything, it's increased.
REL: How did you survive the 2008/09 recession? Travel less?
DK: I don't think I traveled any
less, but I did probably keep a closer eye on expenses. Fortunately I had
enough cash reserve to keep me sane. Worst case scenario and everything goes
to hell …. as perpetual travel guru
Paul Terhorst said to me the other day, "we wind up stuck in a place
Chiang Mai. What's so bad about that?"
Dale with children
REL: How do you manage your finances especially with your
never ending travel schedule?
DK: I have all my monthly bills
automatically charged to credit cards … and then the credit card payments
automatically deducted from my bank account when due. A side benefit to that
is that I'm able to rack up points/miles on the credit cards, which I then
apply to award ticketing or hotel stays. When traveling, I use ATMs for cash
and I carry two cards as insurance, in case I lose one.
That's happened more times than I care to admit.
REL: How has your portfolio changed
since we last
spoke? Did the market downturn of 2008/09 cause you to modify your
DK: I readjusted my portfolio a
little. Sold some that were underperforming before the downturn and replaced
them with stocks and funds I thought had more upside when the tide turned. I
recommitted to keeping enough cash reserve to survive a couple of years
should we go through all that again.
However, I must admit it's painful to sit on too much cash
when the market is soaring, as it did in 2017, but when the market takes a
sudden dive, I'm able to sleep at night.
REL: Also, you are age qualified for Social Security. Has
this income changed your life in any way?
Social Security is a nice little monthly bonus, isn't it? I figure every
month I earn a few nights lodging … or an airplane ticket to somewhere. Money I didn't have before. There aren't many advantages to getting older,
but getting a social security check is one of them.
Also senior citizen's
discounts. Never thought I'd be saying that!
REL: I believe that you are now on
Medicare. Do you use it for normal
checkups? Do you still utilize
tourism for your general care?
DK: I've not yet used Medicare. Last US doctor I saw regularly was my
pediatrician and that was a few decades ago. For the last several years
I've paid all of my
expenses out-of-pocket, and have long term
relationships with doctors at the internationally renowned Bumrungrad
Hospital in Bangkok. I track my annual medical expenses and so far, I've
spent far less than I'd have paid for insurance in the US.
Just last month I saw a cardiologist at Bumrungrad, and converted to US
dollars, I paid about $200 … that for blood work and the doctor's fee. I
was in and out in two hours. I'm content to stick with that program and
rely on Medicare only if I should have a very serious problem where
out-of-pocket expenses would be financially crippling.
Dale in the Russian
REL: The last time we interviewed you, you mentioned that you logged between
100,000 and 200,000 miles a year in travel. Have you slowed down your travel
schedule? How many miles do you log per year these days?
DK: I still fly over 100,000 miles
each year, but just barely. I haven't
slowed down but have changed my travel itineraries somewhat.
Ten years ago,
I was buying around-the-world tickets, originating in countries where
currency fluctuations made prices favorable. But those tickets are no
longer the great deal they once were. So I fly point-to-point these days …
and consequently don't rack up as many miles -- or new countries -- as I did
ten years ago.
REL: With the many years that you have been traveling and the amount of
miles you have logged, are there any countries you still have a passion to
visit? What is it about a country that appeals to you in order to put it on
your list for travel?
DK: Oh my. There are so many countries I still have a passion to visit.
intrigued by countries that are not on the average tourist radar quite yet,
but are developed enough that traveling there isn't particularly grueling or
difficult. I look for that middle-ground. Not touristy, but still
relatively comfortable. I'm going to Colombia in May. That will be new for
me. I'm interested in traveling through the Balkans. Old Soviet republics
like Belarus, Georgia, any of the "Stans" are on my list. Mongolia. And I
still haven't been to Greenland.
The list is long.
REL: Has your life digitized? Do you utilize Skype? iPhone? What devices do
you travel with? Do you make financial transactions online?
DK: I do utilize Skype as well as
free messaging/phone apps such as LINE which is immensely popular in Asia. Kakao Talk and WhatsApp are a couple of
others I use.
With an iPhone, I'm able to do just about any financial
transaction I need to do. I can transfer money between accounts, pay bills,
buy and sell stocks. Everything I need is contained in that little phone. I don't even travel with a laptop or iPad. Just my phone.
REL: You travel light, what is your advice to others? Do you have a special
I travel with about a week's worth of clothes and regularly do
laundry. As long as I'm in one place more than a couple of days, I can
usually find a wash and fold service that costs a fraction of what a hotel
might charge. Shoes are a problem as they take up space. Usually I wear
the one pair of shoes I travel with … shoes adaptable to any climate. If
I'm going to a warm weather destination,
or a beach, I buy sandals once I'm
there. Having said that, I currently have a pair of sandals packed in my
bag. They lay pretty flat and don't take too much room.
Tee shirts you
can buy anywhere and everywhere. I've also discovered at ski resorts in
New Zealand and Japan, you can rent everything, including a ski outfit, gloves,
hat. Anything you need. Another tip that works only if you return to a
place often enough, store some clothes with a hotel or guesthouse where
you're a frequent guest.
Dapper Dale in St
REL: I notice you are always wearing stylish clothes. Do you buy them in the
countries you are traveling in?
DK: Thanks for the compliment but I look like a vagabond most of the time. Actually, I wear the same basic uniform … sticking with shades of
blue/black/gray. I do pack one dress shirt that I can wear if the occasion
warrants as well as trousers that can double as dressy or casual. Depending on where I'm going and for how long, I might wear a sport coat on
the plane. I do sometimes buy clothes when traveling, usually out of
A couple of years ago, when in Northern Ireland, I was
unprepared for the cold and rain. I bought a parka that has become a
REL: We understand that you own a home in the U.S. Will you sell that home
at some point and travel full time? Or will you rent somewhere and keep a
domicile inside the US?
As we've discussed many times, and you stress in your blog,
a home is a burden if you love to travel. I vow to sell my house every year, but I
first have to get rid of STUFF. It's paralyzing, but once I get past that
hurdle, I'll sell the home and probably do as you both do … pick a place to
base out of … for me that would probably be in Asia, and travel from there.
I'm at the point where I feel more at home when traveling than I do when
back in my real home in the US.
I know your readers can relate.
Retire Early Lifestyle
would like to thank Dale for his time and generosity in sharing his
perspectives and wisdom about traveling. We all have benefited from your
skill and your tips!
For more stories and
interviews of Captivating Characters and Early Retirees,
About the Authors
Early Lifestyle appeals to a different
kind of person – the person who prizes their
independence, values their time, and who doesn’t
want to mindlessly follow the crowd.
Retire Early Lifestyle Blog
About Billy & Akaisha