“Life is like a coin. You can spend it any way you wish, but you only spend it once.” – Lillian Dickson
These are the words Alexis Radoux, a 31-year-old avid traveler, musician, and photographer born in Niort, France, lives by. Like most people, he always thought he had to be a millionaire to travel the world. But he soon realized that he didn’t have to be rich to fulfill his dream.
When he was 18, he went hitchhiking for six weeks from the south of France to Scotland, and once getting a taste of what it was like to embark upon a journey to unknown places, he has always had the desire to live abroad.
At 23, he quit his job and moved to England, then to Germany, Brazil and Switzerland, only to later decide that he was meant to see much more of our world.
Traveling became a considerable passion — one that wouldn’t let him go. While the majority of people spend their days sitting behind a desk and daydreaming about venturing to exotic locations, Radoux ditched his routine, personal fears and comfort zones to seek out a vibrant lifestyle.
“After hearing about two friends of ours who spent only $18,000 to travel the world for eight months, my Brazilian wife, Carol, called me with a proposition. She said, ‘Let’s leave everything and do a round the world trip! Alexis we are going to leave everything and travel the world,’ my first reaction was to think she was absolutely crazy. How were we supposed to do that? What would we do about our careers? But then I came to realize that this would probably be the best thing we could do with our lives,” he said. “A month after checking on the Internet how to travel for really cheap, we made the decision to do it. So for the next two years, we planned and saved money for our journey. That’s when we realized how much we were spending on crap we didn’t need! During those two years, we were already so happy and so excited to know we were going to live our dream.”
Before they began their trip, they were married in Las Vegas and partied in Rio de Janeiro. And while they were only supposed to travel the world for about a year, they got so great at traveling on a budget that they stretched that time out to two years and ended up visiting 44 countries for only $14,500 per person, per year! According to Radoux, that’s less than he spends paying for bills living in Brazil.
Each destination he visited offered unparalleled experiences, including numerous jobs (bartender, a French teacher, a musician, a television dubber, and so on), and he was also given the opportunity to meet some fascinating people, most of whom inspired him to some degree with their culture, perspectives and intricate stories.
“I remember meeting this 64-year-old white-haired man from Austria. He rode all the way from Austria to Vietnam on his bike, and we met on top of a mountain. It took us 10 hours to reach this destination by train, but he did it in three days!” explained Radoux. “We later invited him to join us for dinner to listen to his story.”
Radoux also played music extensively while exploring diverse locations in nearly every corner of the globe. While he jammed on his guitar to numerous songs, alongside countless travelers and locals, in the above video you can watch as he performs The White Stripes song “Seven Nation Army” in 45 different countries.
“If you’re looking for an amazing country to visit, I’d say go to India,” said Radoux. “It was definitely one of the most mesmerizing places. You’d need at least a year to see and do everything that’s here. It’s also the cheapest place on Earth to travel to. Actually, it’s like traveling to another planet, another dimension — like entering into some long, forgotten book. It is everything… fascinating and magical. But Japan, Laos and Namibia also inspired me beyond words, too.”
So far, Radoux has visited 71 countries, and doesn’t have any plans of slowing down anytime soon.
It has been five months since Radoux and his wife returned from their journey. He is currently selling his photography, as well as having it exhibited in galleries, including one in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and Radoux and his wife are also negotiating with a production company to have their own travel show.
If you’re interested in breaking free from your routine and finally taking the opportunity to travel the world, Radoux has a few words of encouragement for you.
“Take the risk. There are no doubts to have. Just go for it and don’t even think twice,” he said, as if to convince me as well. “It’s honestly the best experience you could ever imagine to do in your life. But you just have to make sure to do it with an open mind! Don’t travel the world as if you are going on holiday. Experiment with things, open yourself up to people, don’t be afraid, forget about the stereotypes or what you’ve heard about certain regions of the world. And most of all, learn to trust the world — go and see with your own eyes how the world really is. You won’t believe it.”