A single mum has revealed how she quit her corporate job to travel the world – and why life on the road is the best possible education for a child. 

Evie Farrell, 46, from Sydney, packed up her life after a breakup and the loss of a close friend, and since then she and her daughter Emmie, 9, haven’t looked back.

Over the past three years, the intrepid mother-daughter duo have visited the likes of China, Cambodia, the Malaysian Borneo and France, among countless other countries. 

They have also discovered that life on the road is often cheaper than life in Australia.

A single mum has revealed how she quit her corporate job to travel the world - and why life on the road is the best possible education for a child (pictured: Evie and Emmie Farrell)


A single mum has revealed how she quit her corporate job to travel the world – and why life on the road is the best possible education for a child (pictured: Evie and Emmie Farrell)

Evie Farrell , 46, from Sydney, packed up her life after a breakup and the loss of a close friend, and since then she and her daughter Emmie (pictured), 9, haven't looked back

Evie Farrell , 46, from Sydney, packed up her life after a breakup and the loss of a close friend, and since then she and her daughter Emmie (pictured), 9, haven’t looked back

Evie has written a new book (pictured) about the intrepid mother daughter adventures

Evie has written a new book (pictured) about the intrepid mother daughter adventures

‘I love Australia and I can’t wait to explore more of our beautiful country, but it’s more expensive and when we’re home we sink into the stresses and routine of everyday life,’ Evie told FEMAIL.

‘When we are on the road, we are free to go wherever we like.’ 

Evie said the reason for travelling came about because she got sick of the daily grind and only getting home at 8pm to see her daughter for an hour before bed.

When she lost a close friend in 2015, she impulsively decided to sell her house, pack up her belongings and withdraw $30,000 in savings.

‘I booked a flight for us, and we were gone for 18 months,’ Evie said.

During that time, the pair visited countless places – enjoying life and spending more time together. 

Over the past three years, the intrepid mother-daughter duo have visited the likes of China, Cambodia, the Malaysian Borneo and France (pictured), among countless other countries

Over the past three years, the intrepid mother-daughter duo have visited the likes of China, Cambodia, the Malaysian Borneo and France (pictured), among countless other countries

While Evie has home schooled her daughter via the NSW Distance Education primary school programme for the duration of their three years on the road, the mum-of-one said she thinks that travelling gives kids something that school never can (pictured together on the slopes)

While Evie has home schooled her daughter via the NSW Distance Education primary school programme for the duration of their three years on the road, the mum-of-one said she thinks that travelling gives kids something that school never can (pictured together on the slopes)

While Evie has home schooled her daughter via the NSW Distance Education primary school programme for the duration of their three years on the road, the mum-of-one said she thinks that travelling gives kids something that school never can.

‘Of course, school is important, but I do think we confine kids to a classroom when they’re too young and should be still be playing outside and exploring,’ she said.

‘Travel gives children the freedom to explore beyond the classroom, to open their minds through their own experiences and give them the chance to grow uninhibited by the routine and ways of doing things at home.’

She said that Emmie has grown into 'such a lovely girl who is strong and knows her own mind' through travelling (pictured snorkelling)

She said that Emmie has grown into ‘such a lovely girl who is strong and knows her own mind’ through travelling (pictured snorkelling)

The travel has not only been beneficial for little Emmie, but also Evie, who said life in the likes of Asia is often cheaper than it is at home in Australia (pictured together)

The travel has not only been beneficial for little Emmie, but also Evie, who said life in the likes of Asia is often cheaper than it is at home in Australia (pictured together)

She said that Emmie has grown into ‘such a lovely girl who is strong and knows her own mind’ through travelling.

‘She is strategic and confident, and is passionate about child poverty, the environment and protecting elephants.

‘She has seen things with her own eyes and not just learned from books. I think this exposure is so vital in these formative years.’

'We had nowhere we needed to be so we could take out time,' Evie said of their trip (Emmie pictured on their adventure)

'I had so few decisions to make each day, and no need to worry about paying bills and the mortgage,' Evie said

‘We had nowhere we needed to be so we could take out time. I had so few decisions to make each day, and no need to worry about paying bills and the mortgage,’ Evie said of their trip (Emmie pictured on their adventure)

Evie now makes her money through her Instagram profile , blog and new book, Back Yard to Back Pack (pictured together)

Evie now makes her money through her Instagram profile , blog and new book, Back Yard to Back Pack (pictured together)

The travel has not only been beneficial for little Emmie, but also Evie, who said life in the likes of Asia is often cheaper than it is at home in Australia.

‘Travelling without a deadline has been so easy,’ she said.

What are Evie’s tips for being on the road? 

* Be prepared to change your plans, take your time and don’t be too rigid – things will change and you’ll need to adapt accordingly.

* Share decision making with your companion if you have one, and compromise. You need to make sure you do things you both want to do.

* Skype and FaceTime are great for catching up with long-distance friends and family – use them to your advantage.

* Plan ahead, save money and factor in things like schooling, budgets and things – then be prepared to roll with it when you’re on the road.

* Embrace local buses, overnight trains and ferries, pushbikes and tuk-tuks to save money.

* Realise you don’t have to follow the 9-5 pattern and that’s the hardest part. Then, have no regrets.

‘We had nowhere we needed to be so we could take out time. I had so few decisions to make each day, and no need to worry about paying bills and the mortgage.’

She said instead she was able to channel her inner child and just enjoy life and her time with Emmie, laughing and playing together.

‘It’s definitely cheaper than living in Australia,’ Evie said.

In August last year, she revealed how she spent $42 on breakfast in Sydney – an amount she said would have got the family through an entire day while they were travelling. 

‘In Vietnam, we lived on about $60 a day – and China is super cheap too. On our travels, we spent lots of time in Asia, because it’s very affordable and suitable for family travel,’ she said.

‘In most places, we can easily get by on less than $100 a day – by staying at hostels and guesthouses, taking local buses, overnight trains and ferries, riding pushbikes or jumping in tuk-tuks.’ 

Evie now makes her money through her Instagram profile, blog and new book, Back Yard to Back Pack. 

Speaking about her favourite locations, Evie said there have been too many to count, but some of her top highlights have been the moments that haven't cost them much (Emmie pictured)

Speaking about her favourite locations, Evie said there have been too many to count, but some of her top highlights have been the moments that haven’t cost them much (Emmie pictured)

'I love being able to spend all my time with Emmie when we are travelling, and not having to worry about work and bills and responsibility,' the single mum said (Emmie pictured)

‘I love being able to spend all my time with Emmie when we are travelling, and not having to worry about work and bills and responsibility,’ the single mum said (Emmie pictured)

Speaking about her favourite locations, Evie said there have been too many to count, but some of her top highlights have been the moments that haven’t cost them much.

‘Some of our best moments have been in hostels, like in Chengdu, China, where Emmie learned car tricks from Israeli backpackers and made paper planes with the hostel staff, and on long train rides across China when Emmie had the whole carriage joining in selfies,’ she said. 

‘I love being able to spend all my time with Emmie when we are travelling, and not having to worry about work and bills and responsibility. 

‘We have the most amazing times when we are on the road, there’s nothing that compares.’

And, Evie said she doesn’t think there are any drawbacks to being away for long periods of time:

‘We stay in touch with friends while we are travelling and we mostly fit back in when we get back. I don’t miss a thing,’ she said.

'But anyone who is thinking about long term travel should give it a go as it is much easier than you think. All you need is good travel insurance, a pair of supportive shoes and you're ready to go,' Evie (pictured with Emmie) said

‘But anyone who is thinking about long term travel should give it a go as it is much easier than you think. All you need is good travel insurance, a pair of supportive shoes and you’re ready to go,’ Evie (pictured with Emmie) said

Lastly, Evie shared her tips for those who want to give long-term travel a go, with the main tip being just so it:

‘I think travel is such an eye opening, heart swelling and often challenging but beautiful experience that is beneficial and rewarding for everyone, no matter how you choose to do it,’ she said.

‘Some people prefer resort stays and others, like us, prefer to throw on a backpack.

‘But anyone who is thinking about long term travel should give it a go as it is much easier than you think. 

‘All you need is good travel insurance, a pair of supportive shoes and you’re ready to go.’ 

Evie Farrell is the author of Back Yard to Back Pack, $32.99. It is available online and in all good bookstores now. 



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