Traveling is anything but a neatly packed adventure, as some blogs want to portray, but what makes Scratch My Pack Travel unique is that our journey in traveling the world is not some unachievable magic trick of traveling on $10/day.
Instead, our honest how-tos, imaginative journalism, engaging photography, plug and chug itineraries, layover series, and actual budgets, are realistic ways to help you start your journey from scratch.
We're Thomas and Rose, expats from Colorado since 2016 when we reduced our belongings to two 65 liter Gregory backpacks and headed for Colombia with no return tickets. Our planned year abroad blossomed into an every day itinerary. Our job is to help you do the same.
We currently live in Da Nang, Vietnam.
Taiwan (Dec. ‘18), India (March ‘19), Nepal (March ‘19), Dubai (March ‘19), Paris (April ‘19), USA (April & May ‘19), Move to Colombia (June ‘19)
When we left Colorado in 2016, our blog had long been brewing, but leaving ignited a passion for professional direction— we wanted to be shoe-string budget backpackers. We believed that anyone could travel on any budget and we founded our site on this idea.
Now after two years on the road, we know that traveling isn't something easily done. No bullshit and no sugar coating, traveling is hard work. Traveling on a shoe-string budget is even harder. We respect those who can pull off an airtight budget, but it’s just not who we are, and it's not how the majority of people travel.
We read all kinds of publications about traveling the world on $10/day before we departed, but we found that a restricted budget looks neat on paper, but it’s not realistic because it’s not universal. We consistently struck out with a tight budget. The blogs we followed didn't address the sacrifice of a $10/day budget, having to choose between necessities and a once in a lifetime opportunity to live with a family and their water buffalo in Sapa, Vietnam.
In practice, travel comes with unexpected costs, comforts, desires, and tough decisions. We’re good at spending money on travel. We make mistakes that cost money. We splurge. We’re not budget savvy, but we’ve also managed to travel through four continents hustling, spending, and moving wherever our money takes us. Because of this, our vision of travel has changed, and our understanding of the truth about travel has changed.
This is where the future of Scratch My Pack Travel, 2018, is headed—dedicated to reporting the truth about traveling, the ugly, the petty, the potentially inspiring insights of everyday people traveling the world. We want to post about budget failures, mistakes we’ve made, bitch about homesickness, the personal costs of traveling long term, and the genuine struggles of life on the road. The site needs to evolve as we have.
We hope to prepare people for the reality that shit happens when you make an effort to explore. Travel doesn’t always go as planned. Money comes and goes, but opportunities present themselves momentarily, and every cent spent on traveling returns in memories a hundred times over.
So pack your bags, quit stressing about the dollar, be impulsive and scratch more than just the surface of travel.
Scratch My Pack Travel is a one search shop for learning how to travel from scratch. With realistic destination guides, travel resources, and ways to travel longterm, our site inspires people to find more value in their vacation time by scratching more than just the surface.
With over 2,300 followers on social media, 3,300 page views per month, and 72 following our newsletter, our site is a budding project with a concentrated and dedicated following that is steadily increasing, making Scratch My Pack Travel an exciting new blog to collaborate with.
As a powerful team of two, we have skills in professional photography, targeted writing, marketing, and branding. Our content is focused on answering questions that first time travelers and expert backpackers struggle to answer providing resources that cover their basic needs abroad. Our content is highly focused on the visual aspects to better empower our audience to travel abroad and to call attention to brands that we believe in.
Our audience is 76% ages 18-44, with 54% male and 46% female across 42 different countries. Our top four countries are the USA, Vietnam, UK, and New Zealand with specific interests in outdoor sports and travel.
We're keen to work with brands that mirror our interests of a better work-life balance. We can help showcase your brand and products to our growing audience in an alternative way to traditional advertising. For a more detailed media package about our services please email us at email@example.com
Ways in which we can work together are:
Professional photography for use in marketing and social media
Sponsored blog posts
Social media collaboration
Hotel and restaurant reviews (Level 5 Contributor on TripAdvisor)
Copywriting and editing
We want to work with brands that offer our readers something meaningful and makes their life easier by enabling them to achieve their travel goals. We believe in the power of community and support and we want to work with brands that inspire our readers. If you believe that your brand is right for our audience, we would love to hear from you. Let's see how we can work together and inspire more people to travel.
Rose Hedberg Is a Content Writer and Editor for SMP
A last minute decision to spend a semester abroad in Ireland during college, triggered a series of adventures to Europe and South America in the years to follow. Following College, life became about how to make money so that Hedberg could continue traveling. What was initially a race for more stamps, grander experiences, and better stories, became everyday life. Moving to Vietnam in 2017, began a new adventure and writing for SMP explored more of the transition from backpack to expat. Hedberg enjoys writing narratives of observation about how other people live, personal essays on what it means to live on the road and carefree articles on the unexpected discoveries while traveling.
Favorite food discovered while traveling: I was continually disgusted by sushi in Colorado, but raw fresh fish in Asia is bomb!
Most memorable country traveled: Impossible to pick just one, but Japan left a lasting impression on my sense of taste and every minute in the country exceeded my imagination of how life proceeded in Asian countries. Myanmar also left me feigning for more when we left. The people and the untouched beauty were unlike any where we'd been.
Currently reading: The Working Woman’s Handbook by Phoebe Lovatt
Most inspiring country as a writer: Definitely Colombia
Thomas Brath Is a Photographer and Contributing Writer for SMP
Favorite food discovered while traveling: Hot sauce and fresh chili’s.
Most memorable country I've traveled: That's tough. I am inspired by many things as a photographer. Each country inspires me in a different way and each leave their own unique impression on me. I think I was most inspired in Colombia, Japan, and Myanmar.
Currently editing pictures of: Currently making a coffee table photo book (currently untitled) about the contrasting realities of life in SE Asia. Hopeful release February 2019.
What kind of camera equipment do you use:
DSLR - Nikon D5500 with a Nikon 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6 VR
Mirrorless - Fujifilm X-T20 with a XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 R LM OIS
& a Fujinon XF 35mm f/1.4 R
Pursuing photography early on, Brath has always had an eye for telling stories through his lens, which is currently the Fujifilm X-T20 for street and documentary photography and a Nikon D5500 for landscape and travel photography. Traveling with his belongings packed tightly in his backpack, he set out for his first trip abroad to Europe in 2011 not knowing what to expect. Inspired and completely hooked on travel, each year since he’s had the pleasure of escaping for weeks at a time and bringing a first time traveler abroad with him. It’s allowed Brath to witness and experience the excitement of travel through a range of perspectives. Each new country, city or neighborhood reignites a vigorous passion for creating art and remembering to live everyday to the fullest. His favorite shots capture parts of history. Whether it’s in the buildings or the people, each photo reveals a fascination in witnessing the evolution of history and our fragile place among it.