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Couple enjoying 'world's longest honeymoon' after quitting jobs to travel world for five years

Mirror logo Mirror 30-12-2016

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An adventurous couple has embarked on what could be the world's longest honeymoon - for five years.

Anne and Mike Howard got married in 2011, then surprised their family and friends by selling most of their possessions, quitting their jobs, renting out their New York house, and jetting off around the world.

They left home on January 22, 2012 and have been travelling ever since, visiting all seven continents and more than 50 countries.

“We thought, you know, waiting till we are 65 and retired to follow our dreams seemed like a really risky plan,” Mike, 39, told The Washington Post.

“Let’s get out there and travel while we are young and healthy.”

© HoneyTrek.com At first the Howards used their savings to fund the epic trip, but they now make an income from their travel website, HoneyTrek.com , which offers practical tips for long-term travellers. 

Anne’s background as a magazine editor and Mike’s as a digital media strategist and photographer helped to make the venture a success.

© HoneyTrek.com "We started HoneyTrek to share our journey and inspire more people to follow their travel dreams," the couple said. 

They have also made some extra cash by giving lectures — including a Smithsonian Associates talk earlier this month called "Travel Hacking 101: How to Travel Longer For Less."

At first the honeymooners had a travel budget of US$39 per day (A$54), but they later managed to whittle that down to less than A$35 per day.

© HoneyTrek.com The couple now spend just $12.20 (A$17) a day each, which covers all their food, accommodation and leisure activities.

However, their budget does vary from country to country, and they spent a lot less in south east Asia than they did when travelling in Japan, Australia and the UK.

The couple's tips for travelling cheaply include taking advantage of frequent flyer miles, booking hotel rooms on arrival rather than in advance, volunteering, and house-sitting.

They also suggest staying in one village or town for a while, rather than trying to rush around the country.

Anne, 34, said: “You have to be somewhere at least a week to begin to get a feel for how people live there.”

© HoneyTrek.com She also suggested taking buses rather than flying between cities - as it not only saves money but also allows travellers to see more of the country.

Despite living on a budget, the pair have managed to enjoy some amazing experiences - from trekking through the mountains of Nepal, to hitchhiking through the Cambodian countryside, to scuba diving on Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

And they spent their fifth wedding anniversary in Antarctica, kayaking, whale watching and getting up close and personal with penguins.

The couple are back in the US for the month of December, and staying in Belfast, Maine until Christmas, where they are housesitting for friends and looking after their cat.

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