$1M Vacation? Where would you go?

I saw this question posed the other day, I think somewhere on Facebook. I’ll shove the URL in here later. A million dollars. And no time limit on a vacation. What would I do?

  • First question: who would I take with me?
  • Second question: what would happen to my job?
  • Third question: should I spend it all?

  1. My wife, of course. Otherwise, after a few days/weeks/months she might wonder where I’d gone off to. My kids? Maybe yes, for part of it. (They’d have to return home anyway, to their jobs and friends…) My friends? Depends on how adventurous they wanted to be!
  2. I guess I could set aside a few hundred thousand dollars as a fund, so I could say ‘goodbye’ to the job, and maybe never have to go back to it. Or I could ask for a year off, and decide in 12 months what to do. (I might get tired of traveling, and miss going to the office. Hmmmmmm.)
  3. This is related to #2. Suppose I had, well, only half of the money left. (This assumes that the $1M is after-taxes! If not, what kind of a contest is this?) So, $500K. At $1,000 per day that’s almost 18 months away. So, let’s think about this…

(Estimating. An interesting skill. I don’t think it’s taught much anymore, but it was sure useful before the Internet and calculators… Back when the cashier had to make change in their head!)

Let’s say around-the-world air tickets are $10,000 each. Go around two or three times, total; two ticket (for the wife and I) – that’s $60,000. $440K left to spend. $400 a day for hotel and meals (being a bit frugal: I couldn’t eat like a glutton for 18 months! And who needs fluffy bath towels and a jacuzzi when you’re only staying a few days?) So, six months at $400 is… $72,000. Add in tickets to shows, hot air balloon rides, polar bear watching, etc. Let’s take it up to $100,000. That still leaves well over $300,000.

If the rules allow it, I could spend the rest on other things. After all, I’d already set aside that salary fund. Pay off the mortgage, buy a new/used car (haven’t done that in 12 years!), fix the bathrooms, repaint the inside of the house… Whoa! Getting carried away here.

How about buy a vacation home somewhere I’d love to visit once a year for a few weeks or a month or so? Romania (got friends there)? Germany (can speak the language, love the food)?

Well, this is a subject for another post: How to spend the remaining $250,000.

Back to the travel. What itinerary? Where to go? Let’s make a list, then add to it later. No particular priority order.

  1. Ireland
  2. Portugal, Bulgaria, Serbia, Herzegovina, Albania … just about the only countries in Europe I’ve not visited yet.
  3. Greenland, Iceland, Svalbard (those polar bears are calling)
  4. Australia and New Zealand (because it’s on everyone’s list)
  5. The Holy Land. All of it.
  6. Sicily. Because of the wonderful memories there…

And so on.
Keep dreaming.
Maybe Ed McMahon really will show up at the front door.

(Here’s that URL: $1M Vacation)