Amar Hussain is a writer, author and full time digital nomad. He started a Gap Year site back in 2009 during his own Gap Year which ended up turning into a ‘Gap Life’. Amar has since travelled all 7 continents whilst doing internet marketing on the road.
Who or what gave you the travel bug?
I didn’t grow up doing much travelling. My first “backpacker” trip was to Rome when I was 17 and the bug grew from there. I think it all came to ahead when I lived with a guy, older than myself at the time, who had done several world trips. His photography from South America and Asia really inspired me to travel.
What made you move from hobbyist to professional?
It was really born out of necessity. I set off on my travels in 2009 with no real clue, a brand new website and a severe lack of funds. My bank account was taking a beating and I was living off pasta and tomato sauce. It was either make the blogging work or go home. Setting off underfunded was like jumping out of a plane. With the ground fast approaching it was important to “pull the chute” and make it work. Five years later, I’m still a professional travel blogger.
Where is your favourite place in the world?
That’s a ridiculously hard question to answer as I like different places for different reasons. I really liked Belize and Mexico for the incredible food. My favourite adventure travel spots are Ecuador, Switzerland and New Zealand. I really enjoyed living in Medellin and Buenos Aires. My new favourite chill out country has to be Uruguay. I think more people should visit but then again, would that take away it’s charm?
What three things can you not travel without?
I think I would struggle to travel without my iPhone more for the Spotify app than anything else. Music can get you through the best and worst of travel. I like to be kitted out (especially as I have a dodgy back) and having a good travel backpack is important. I’ve had the same one for years and it comes on all my trips. Finally, I couldn’t travel without my GoPro. I do a lot of adventure activities and any other camera just wouldn’t cut it for documenting my travels.
Describe your dream trip if money was no object?
Well I’ve actually just done my dream trip a couple of months ago which was to Antarctica. I’ve wanted to go for years and it felt amazing to finally achieve it. Now I’d love to go on a Virgin Galactic space flight. Does anyone have a spare $250,000 lying around?
Who would be your ideal travel companion?
The last trip I did was with an old friend from business school and it was pretty ideal. If you’re going to travel with someone long term you should do a test trip (we’d done a couple of smaller trips already) to see how compatible you are. It’s also important to have similar interests (do you both like adventure sports for example) and also having a similar budget is also important.
What is your top travel tip for our readers?
I think with all the technology we carry and social media we are exposed to, we can lose sight of being in the moment. Michelangelo sculptured masterpieces but one of them we’ll never see. It was made from snow. It might seem wasteful to commission an artistic genius to sculpt something from snow, lost to the world forever but perhaps it was right. It was a rare that it snowed in Florence, an event to be enjoyed in that moment. The same goes for your travels. Put the camera away and just enjoy the beauty right in front of you. Be in the moment.
Thanks for talking to us Amar!
Amar is very active across the social media platforms. We suggest following him an his adventures for Gap Year Escape.