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Ahoy!

If you’re reading this, you’ve probably just stumbled across The Broke Backpacker for the first time. Well, take a deep breath, your life is about to change forever.

… OK, I’m kidding. You can breathe normally now.

PLEASED TO MEET YOU!

Hi! I’m Will Hatton, adventurer and online entrepreneur.

I am passionate about real adventures; freezing peaks and steaming jungles, crashing waves and raging rivers; if it gets my heart pumping and my blood racing, I’m in.

The Broke Backpacker started off as a hobby blog aimed at staying in touch with friends back home. It quickly became my obsession as I wanted to show others that it’s possible to travel the world on a budget of $10 a day. 

Today, The Broke Backpacker is a leading authority on real adventures, extreme budget travel and how to become a digital nomad.

The goal of The Broke Backpacker is to show budding adventurers how to ditch their desks, hit the road and discover the freedom of owning your own online business while travelling the world.

I believe that travel is the ultimate learning experience and that when you are out of your comfort zone, this is when you learn the most.

9 YEARS OF TRAVEL

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Trekking through the Venezuelan jungle.

I had my first taste of backpacking when I was eighteen and was instantly hooked by all the inspiring people I met whilst hitching, camping and couchsurfing my way around Europe.

Since then, I have trekked deep into the Venezuelan jungle, worked on bars in Laos, herded goats in the Holy Land and conquered the highest navigable pass in the world armed with a poorly drawn map and a packet of ritz crackers.

I have survived knife-point robberies in Nepal, guerrilla encounters in Myanmar, motorbike crashes in Vietnam, marriage proposals in Iran, arrests in India and numerous other mis-adventures. Check out this post to find out about some of the lessons I learnt on the road. 

Why did I choose a life of travel?

When I was nineteen, I became seriously injured whilst trekking in Costa Rica and spent two weeks in a hospital before being shipped back to the UK.

I had always wanted to be a Royal Marine but, on account of my injury, that dream was abruptly over.

I did what any sane person would do; made my way to India and travelled around Asia on a budget of fifty bucks a week.

Being in India, by myself, at such a young age, was one hell of a culture shock but it ignited my passion for adventure and pushing myself out of my comfort zone.

How do I pay for my adventures?

Originally, I had the world’s worst job unloading lorries at 5am for minimum wage. I worked sixty hours a week to save some cash and then quit, hitting the road for three years and not looking back.

I stretched my money as far as possible by hitchhiking and couchsurfing everywhere and picking up odd jobs on farms and in bars and hostels, whenever I could.

I have worked dozens of weird and wonderful jobs all around the world but today, I make my sole income online. I am currently saving my cash to open a chain of hostels across South America.

In a nutshell, I travelled super cheap in super cheap countries. These days, I make a decent income online but I am almost always still broke as I invest heavily into this site and into other online ventures.

Livin’ large in Venezuela, the cheapest country in the world.

Do you have to be rich to travel?

Hell no. I’ve been gallivanting around the globe on a budget of $10 a day for years.

I learned pretty quickly that anything is possible if you want it bad enough. All I ever wanted to do was see the world and if that meant sacrificing a ton of comfort then it was a trade I was willing to make. I travelled like a hobo for seven years, surviving on crackers and kindness.

I often camp out and I found that travelling broke is simply the best adventure experience – when you’re broke you’re forced out of your comfort zone, you learn, you evolve and you make friends all over the world.

Travel is for everyone; it doesn’t matter how old you are, where you are from or where you are going; at the end of the day, to travel is a basic human impulse and everybody should have the opportunity to travel at least once in their life.

I am passionate about teaching others to ditch their desks, start an online career and hit the road in search of a better life.

rickshaw race

Driving my tuk tuk across India

THE STORY OF THE BLOG

The Broke Backpacker was founded in September 2014.

After being on the road for nearly six years, and being constantly inundated with questions on how I managed to travel with limited money, I wanted to share my experiences of how to travel the world on a budget.

When it comes to my own adventures, I enjoy exploring lesser-visited countries such as Iran, Palestine, Pakistan or North Korea.

The world is a beautiful place, there are good people and bad people in every country, and I see it as my duty to help illuminate parts of the world which are infrequently visited by the backpacking and explorer communities.

I started The Broke Backpacker with the aim of teaching others how to to hit the road in search of a real adventure and how to travel on the cheap.

 

In November 2015, I began a new adventure. This is a journey which changed my life.

UK TO PAPUA NEW GUINEA

I aimed to travel from the UK to Papua New Guinea without the use of flights.

I hitchhiked my way across Europe, sleeping in the rock-cut caves of Cappadocia, before making my way into mysterious Iran where I met Esme.

From Iran, I travelled to Pakistan, hiking deep into the Himalayas and Couchsurfing with locals in some truly far-flung places.

Next up, I drove a multicoloured Tuk Tuk, Tinkerbell, 2000km across India.

Esme flew out to meet me in India and we travelled together before doing a u-turn and heading back to Iran via Pakistan. In Iran, we got married.

After a year on the road, I paused UK to PNG in India (which is as far as I made it without flying from the UK) and prepared to face a new challenge.

Falling in love with Esme was an unexpected development on my travels and it changed the objective of my trip big time. Esme’s Iranian visa makes it tough for her to get into some countries and our combined bank accounts amounted to less than $1000.

In order for me and Esme to stay together, I needed to scale The Broke Backpacker to a point where it could sustain the travels of two people. In need of a base, we moved to Chiang Mai in Thailand which is currently our home in between our adventures.

Throughout 2016 and 2017, I tested almost constantly, I launched numerous online ventures and experimented with different models of monetisation. We were almost constantly nearly bankrupt as I invested everything I made into new online experiments.

I started an adventure tour company – running tours to Pakistan – to raise funds to plow into new ideas.

My goal is simple – build a series of online businesses than run on autopilot and fund our life of adventures. I have learnt a huge amount over the last two years and I now know what works when it comes to building an online business.

I have been working on a top secret project for a while now – Ditch Your Desk – I aim to show you how to live a meaningful, rewarding life through career freedom and epic adventures.

In a nutshell; I want to teach you guys how to travel the world and earn money online as you go.

DITCH YOUR DESK

Once upon a time, I had a brief go at getting a normal job, at settling down. I didn’t last long and I quickly ditched my desk to go backpacking in South America. I travelled with a small amount of savings I had built up and stretched my money out by picking up jobs along the way.

Beer Money

Working (drinking) behind a hostel bar

Over the last couple of years, I’ve discovered that I am really passionate about online business and in 2017 I set up a series of new online ventures with the aim of building a passive income of $10,000 a month.

The Broke Backpacker Mission: My mission is to provide a blueprint for others to ditch their desks and discover the world. I want to show you that it’s possible to travel the world on a budget of $10 a day whilst you set up an online income. Using in-depth case studies, I will teach you how to improve your lifestyle and fund endless travels by building an online empire.

I believe it is totally possible to travel the world and earn a quality online income, to find out more, join the newsletter below.

Once I’ve made my millions, I will buy a patch of land somewhere, start a commune, delete all of my social media handles forever and go back to travelling the world like I used to – without a phone.

EXPLORE MORE

And that’s The Broke Backpacker! Have an explore of some of my favourite adventure tales from the road…

My favourite posts

 

Work with me

Feel free to inquire about working with me, collaborating with me or sponsoring the site.

Stalk me

Developed a weird obsession with the site? Stalk me 24/7 on Instagram and Facebook.

myanmar backpacking

13 Comments

  • Ole K. Jensen says:

    Dear Will,

    Where can I find your guide? I would like to buy it, as I am going to Pakistan next week.

    Best regards,
    Ole

  • Sylvia Hayes says:

    Dear Will Hatton.
    I was delighted to read about your travels and adventures in Iran. Back in the days of the Shah I worked in Teheran for 4 years and enjoyed every minute. The people..the history..the mountains..coastal regions. And lets not forget the food! I hold a British passport and I also have Irish ancestory. Anything is possible. Good luck with all your future adventures.
    I have lived in South Africa for over 40 years…and still pack quite a lot of travels into my life.
    Very best wishes
    Sylvia Hayes

    • Will Hatton says:

      Hey Silvia! Thanks for your message! I’m actually back in Tehran right now, a cup of tea in one hand and a feast for dinner in the works… Amazing country!

  • Sam says:

    Dear Will,
    I started reading your blog two years ago when I was 16 years old and looking at ways to travel the world. Your blog inspired and helped me to actually accomplish that dream and when I turned 18, I bought a one way ticket to Spain and then stayed in Europe for 3 months, seeing 8 different countries all because you helped me know it was possible. Thank you for your amazing advice.

    • Will Hatton says:

      Hey Samantha! I am so stoked that you are living an adventure, power to you and keep on rocking – if you find yourself in Asia, let me know; beers are on me.

  • akbj says:

    Hey Will, found this site by accident through another travel blog, it’s great reading about what you do!
    I’m a 56 year old woman who has some health issues, (chronic pain etc) & I take some prescription medications & need regular access to the same healthcare provider. (I live in Alaska) I love traveling in theory but in reality it’s kind of difficult with the pain issues. For now it’s just armchair traveling through books & blogs like yours & I wanted to let you know how much I’ve enjoyed discovering your blog & how great it is that after so long of bare bones travel you are able to make an online living! Thanks for allowing some of us to follow you on your adventures & enjoy vicariously.

    • Will Hatton says:

      Thanks so much for your kind comments, I’m stoked that you are enjoying the site! Alaska has been on my wish-list for so long now, what an incredible part of the world to hail from…

  • Anuj Agarwal says:

    Hi Will,

    My name is Anuj Agarwal. I’m Founder of Feedspot.

    I would like to personally congratulate you as your blog The Broke Backpacker has been selected by our panelist as one of the Top 100 Backpacking Blogs on the web.

    http://blog.feedspot.com/backpacking_blogs/

    I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world. This is the most comprehensive list of Top 100 Backpacking Blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this!

    Also, you have the honor of displaying the badge on your blog.

    Best,
    Anuj

  • Evan says:

    Hi will,

    I am super encouraged by your website, its so well made and inspiring! I am currently planning a cheap trip to Vietnam and surrounding countries! Thank you for giving me the motivation to pursue a life long dream!

  • somgal says:

    How do you plan on going from East-tumor or Indonesia to Papua New Guinea? I too want to do the trip from western Europe to PNG without flying, but I couldn’t find how to do this last part of the trip. According to my research, there are no ferries between these last points. Your only options are taking a very expensive cruise or spending a very long time trying to find a private yacht.

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