I will begin by saying Brett and I always have a Plan B. Always. Until the pandemic hit we’ve never had to activate one though because of all the research and planning that has gone into our original plans.
The pandemic upended everything. Plan B during our travels was always to return to the U.S. if the flag went up, but we had never thought about returning to Kaua’i until our daughters suggested we eventually move back when we were together for Christmas 2019. After a short visit to the island in January of 2020 before we set off for Japan, when U.S. citizens were told to return we headed for Kaua’i. Our unexpected and early return to the island was expensive, but in hindsight we are very grateful we did come here – it’s been a very safe place to live during the pandemic, and we’ve been very happy here.
The U.S. State Department recently announced that 80% of the world’s countries are currently unsafe to visit, and we know there is a possibility that even by 2023 it may not be safe to travel to some of the locations on our itinerary, although hopefully that possibility will be very small by then. We may have to make changes to the itinerary before we go, but overall we think that waiting longer to start traveling again, staying vaccinated (with boosters if necessary), and being careful overall will mean we’ll be able to become full-time nomads again.
So what’s our Plan B if the Big Adventure Part II isn’t possible? If full-time international travel isn’t possible? We’ve come up with a very simple plan if that’s the case: We’ll still become nomads, but will travel to the west coast on the mainland, buy a car (most likely used), and then travel around the U.S. for a while. We’ll do month-long stays in cities throughout the country with a goal of staying in smaller places versus big metropolitan areas, getting to know both the cities and what’s in the area around them. We’ll make an effort to visit national parks along the way, and other places of interest as well. We would still plan a yearly visit to Japan, storing the car during that time, but then picking up our travels again upon return to the U.S.
We’ve also come up with a Plan C if things get really bad: we’ll settle down somewhere. We’ve made a decision about where we want to park ourselves whenever we decide to stop traveling full time. It’s not perfect (no place is), but the location offers most of what we’re looking for in a permanent location. Hopefully that won’t have to happen though for a few more years.
Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C : we don’t leave home without them!