We’re Audrey and Harry Lesner, known in the travel blogging world as “The Budget Savvy Travelers.” In September 2014, we sold nearly everything we owned and quit or jobs to set off on a round-the-world adventure. Almost four years later, we’re still out exploring and loving our nomadic life. Our travel blog stands out from the crowd because we have a very honest and realistic approach toward budget travel. Many of our crazy travel moments and experiences are featured on our Top Ten Budget Travel YouTube channel.
1. How long have you been blogging?
Back in 2013, we made the decision to travel full-time. It was then that we decided to start our travel blog. Initially, we kept our website on the down-low until we notified our bosses that we were quitting our jobs to travel the world. Interestingly enough, during the time that we were keeping our blog a secret, we were shocked that several people from our past still found it! (Our blog was live, but we weren’t promoting it.) It just goes to show you can’t hide from the internet! At this point, our blog is almost five years old.
2. Are you a full-time blogger or do you also have another job/career?
For about three years, we were just having fun with our blog, using it as a creative outlet and travel diary of sorts. In the last year or so, we decided to self-host so we could continue to shape our website and use it as a way of generating income. In addition to blogging, we do some freelancing on the side as well.
3. What got you started into blogging?
We got into blogging at the same time we decided to embark on our backpacking trip. Audrey was following a bunch of couples who were documenting their nomadic lifestyle online and we were inspired to do the same. We kept thinking if they could do it, why can’t we?
4. What is your blog about and how does it help others?
Initially, our blog was a place where we could document our round-the-world (RTW) backpacking trip. However, it slowly developed into a website dedicated to finding amazing travel experiences that can be enjoyed on a budget. Our target audience is primarily couples who have high-end tastes, but a low-end budget. We spend a lot of time researching to find these hidden gems. We like to think that we do all the dirty work so that our followers don’t have to. We also enjoy working with small business owners by marketing their travel-related companies.
5. What is working for you and your blog? Why?
Since settling in Europe, especially in the Balkans, we’ve become established and connected within this region. Finding a community is extremely important when you are a blogger. Just like in any form of business, in order to be successful, you must network and build connections with those that share a common livelihood or goal.
6. What did not work out so well for your blog? Why?
Instead of discussing what didn’t work, I’m going to focus on one of the most difficult aspects of building a website. One of the most stressful situations that can occur is discovering a technical issue on your website, and knowing it is your job to fix it. Self-hosting can be a lot of work. Often when there is an IT breakdown, it is your responsibility to find out how to repair the problem. I think figuring out all the technology associated with building a website is one of the biggest barriers for people when starting a blog.
7. What tools are you using that you can introduce my readers to?
Some blogging essentials definitely include a good camera and a user-friendly photo editing program. Having eye-catching photography is a must for any blogger! However, if I can personalize our answer a bit, do you know what we’d love to have? Fast Wi-Fi! Typically, we base ourselves in Split six months of every year and Croatia is known to have one of the slowest Wi-Fi speeds in Europe. After experiencing lightning fast internet in places like Taiwan, Romania, and Bulgaria, often times it feels like we’re both working with nine fingers tied behind our back.
For any readers who are curious about starting their own website, we have a great online resource that breaks it all down for beginning bloggers.
8. What piece of advice would you give to someone who is interested in starting a blog?
The best advice we can offer to new bloggers is to find your niche, develop it, and stick with it. The more specific you can get your blogging topic, region, or specialty the better. Although there are still many opportunities to build your brand, the market is so saturated and flooded with bloggers that these days standing out from the crowd is really difficult. We’re not saying don’t be you, but strive to specialize in a specific topic so that other like-minded people can easily find you. Next, network with these folks to continue to grow your online tribe.
9. What do you have planned for the future of your website/blog?
We have some great things planned for the future of our website. We’re still going to keep traveling, searching for amazing budget travel experiences that offer a great value for the money. In fact, there are actually two major regions that we haven’t really tried to do on a budget yet, North America and Africa. We don’t think a lot of international backpackers tour the United States because it’s really hard to do cheaply. We’d love to write budget guides to promote non-U.S. citizens to backpack around the U.S.
10. Where can everyone find you?
Below we’ve attached all of the popular social media accounts, but we’ve also included our link to VeeR TV. VeeR is an exciting, new platform for travel vlogging. We’ve recently started documenting our travels in a 360 Virtual Reality (VR) format. We invite other travelers to check out this latest technology trend.
Blog URL: https://thebudgetsavvytravelers.com
VeeR TV: https://veer.tv/vr/TheBSTravelers
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