Episode 008 - Internationalization

What is the #1 thing that new retirees do? Travel. By reclaiming their right to their time, travel becomes the best use of it. But if you consider yourself to be a free spirit and a citizen of the planet, you will already know that travel comes with huge benefits and many are not obvious until you get out there and see the world. Let’s talk about why internationalization and travel are critical activities for the unconstrained.

On this episode we discuss the methods of protecting yourself, your assets and your businesses in the 21st century, and how most of the time you are your own worst enemy when it comes to asset protection.

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Show Notes

Migration really has been a factor in the human experience since the dawn of time. But it really has only been for the past 500 or so years that empires set out to conquer foreign lands and with that, implant their own people on those adventures - setting up colonies or “new” versions of their own countries. New England, New Scotland (Nova Scotia), New Spain (Mexico), etc. And that the individual gained the right to roam the planet in search of their future.

 

In the USA, the identity of the American has been crafted based on the human history of those that migrated and resided here for hundreds of years. Their struggles, their wars, their civil rights issues, etc. This created the identity of Americans and it is not one identity. We all have our own unique perspective on what it means to be an American, for example. Yet we rally around some common ideologies.

 

In a time where an airline ticket can be had for a day’s labor, or through travel hacking you can get to the other side of the world with one credit card award signup and some money for airport surcharges, why is it that only 42% of Americans have a passport? Why is it that a country of immigrants are not willing to continue to roam and find their opportunity out of their domestic land?

 

I want to do a deep dive in the concept of international travel and why I believe it to be the greatest opportunity of wealth building today, as well as a great safety strategy for keeping your wealth. But that the concept of wealth may not just be about money. And that we seem to be living in a time when statist governments wish to control the free movement of people both in and out of their realm, and how this could be the worst possible situation for those that wish to live unconstrained.

 

· Observations from visiting Venice, Italy

· The most noteworthy and interesting things in that city were the humble things

· Marco Polo’s house

· The Jewish Ghetto

· Yet the wealth of that city and the oppulence is incredible

· Dominant trading center for the mediterranean

· Accumulation of wealth by the upper classes

· Venice was the “toll bridge” of international trade

· New products and techniques were discovered in far regions

· Venetians controlled the distribution channels

· Venice is the poster child of how internationalization created vast wealth for the people even though few of them ever left their own shores

· You have a habitual and subconcious knowledge of your local market

· When you go to a foreign place, you see things that they locals there don’t see

· You can A-B compare their products & services and methods with your own

· This uncovers opportunity to bridge

· Consider the Amazon FBA effect

· What do you gain from travel?

· The confidence you build in being able to interact & trade in other regions

· You build friendships that are often life long friendships

· The challenge of adaptation broadens the mind

· Your willingness to go to a region demonstrates an investment in faith in that region

· Most of the time that is rewarded

· But you have to be a humble guest and learning that skill might not be native

· The Internet helps but also may hinder

· Through the Internet you can see other’s experiences in travel (e.g YouTube)

· You might be able to research other countries

· But remember with over 7 billion on this planet, only about 50% of them have access to the Internet and it may not be regular access

· You cannot see the culture that easily on the Internet

· Often it is an illusion, like an Instagram perspective

· Or there are purveyors of fear who may be manipulating the perception of reality to strengthen their needs

· Reports of violent crime may be over-rated

· Artificial amplification of the negative

· Those that can roam globally learn basic life skills that are critical

· Backpackers learn how to leverage from community

· You learn how to live on less in order to roam longer

· 5 star lifestyles cannot be sustained for very long

· Some countries don’t really even support expensive hotels, etc. because there is little demand for it

· “Roughing it” is a learned skill

· You learn not to take things for granted

· Water quality

· Food

· Health

· Communications

· Discovering that people are the greatest resource

· When friends are made, they welcome you into their world

· Travelers can be welcomed - if they are well behaved

· You learn from others that your perceptions may be wrong or distorted

· You broaden your understanding of humanity by travel

· You see differences in economics

· Most non-western countries are affordable

· Accomodation may be cheaper than you are used to

· Food will be different, and probably cheaper than you are used to

· You don’t have as many static costs of keeping a footprint in a region

 

· You learn quickly how to avoid the traps of being targetted as a tourist:

· Mobile phones & data

· Avoiding airports for food, etc.

· Embracing AirBnB & Uber

· Banking, credit cards and money exchange

· Healthcare and preparation

· Embracing traveling light

· The importance of asset internationalization

· The story of 2008 for me & real estate

· Diversification is key to protection

· Diversification is also key to stealth

· Understand it is powerful for private asset protection

· It is worthless for tax protection for the average American

· FBARs

· FATCA

· Citizenship based taxation

· Why having multiple passports is ideal

· You never know what the future might hold

· “Go where you are treated best” - Nomad Capitalist

· Different tier passports and how to get them

· Citizenship by investment

· Marriage

· Birth right - e.g. Ireland

· Residency & Work

· Family ties

· International relationships between countries based on passport

· Hire attorneys, etc

· It is nearly impossible to know all the details of laws in multiple countries

· Yet you are subject to them

· Before you acquire assets outside of your domestic region, hire two attorneys:

· One in your native country to verify you won’t create a tax or legal issue

· One in the foreign country to verify your rights in that region

· A word on travel hacking

· A very powerful tool, but it is not for everyone

· Requires discipline that the majority do not have

· You will hear a lot of success stories, but few failures

· Despite what you are told, you can NEVER travel entirely for free

· Credit cards have fees - annual & min spend costs

· Airline tickets usually will have airport surcharges & fees

· Growing all the time

· E.g. A “Free” ticket to London, comes with up to $400 in airport surcharges you have to pay

· Mileage award tickets may have extra charges for seat selection, baggage, etc.

· You may be able to offset these with cashback rewards, but assumes a higher level of spend - good for businesses, not good for individuals

· But remember, in capitalism we are all businesses

· Another reason to register yourself as a business

· There are still great tricks you can do, and generally I don’t pay for airline tickets & hotels

· Research heavily before you start this - flyertalk forums are a good place to start

· Internationalization underscores the importance of being unconstrained

· You can’t spend time traveling if you have a job to report to

· You can’t travel without govt authorization (passport)

· You can’t travel without some money in your pocket, or credit cards

· But the benefits of having the freedom to roam the world are immense

· This is really one of the greatest reasons to be unconstrained

 

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