Karsten Aichholz: Gaming Entrepreneur and Creator of Thailand Starter Kit!

Karsten Aichholz: Advice from Gaming Entrepreneur and Thailand Starter Kit! Creator
Courtesy of Karsten Aichholz

Karsten Aichholz is the perfect person to author the Thailand Starter Kit!, a website full of advice for ex-pats moving to Thailand. After nearly a decade of living in Bangkok, Karsten offers advice on everything from housing to fitness to grocery delivery in the Land of Smiles.

In our entertaining and fascinating discussion, Karsten explains how he went from corporate climber in Germany to one of the first nomadic entrepreneurs in Thailand’s video game sector.

Along with Thailand Starter Kit!, we also talk about Karsten’s Brewed in Bangkok podcast, an excellent dive into the hidden world of the most extraordinary people you meet in Bangkok.

“I took out a quarter of the money we had… It was a leap of faith, but I thought we got to do something.” – Karsten Aichholz

Travel Topics:

  • Moving to Bangkok 10 years ago before ‘it was a thing’ [2:20]
  • How to create a business from near scratch in Thailand [9:45]
  • How 3,700 hours of EverQuest in high school paid off [11:02]
  • Advice for freelancers: Creating a start-up? Find a platform to do your marketing [16:05]
  • Another tip: A platform bans your product? Make a new platform! [16:30]
  • Why Karsten actually loved working for a corporation [20:15]
  • What can happen in German bureaucratic unemployment offices [26:40]
  • When you almost run out of cash, you become less risk-adverse [35:20]
  • How Karsten’s partner left the gaming world because he was ready for more intellectual pursuits [43:40]
  • New dreams: Turning altruistic hobbies into a business [47:20]
  • Wild stories accrued while living in Bangkok for a decade [52:07]

Karsten Aichholz’ Talking Points:

Website  |  Twitter  | Facebook

  • Connect with Thailand Starter Kit:

Website  |  Twitter  | Facebook

Music Credit:

Take Action:

When Karsten and his business partner almost ran out of money, he decided to take a risk that changed the fate of his company. SO go ahead and take a risk!

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Dylan Basile: Tree Tribe Plants 40,000 Trees while Co-Founder Survives Dengue Fever

Courtesy of Dylan Basile of Tree Tribe
Courtesy of Dylan Basile

Marketing nomad Dylan Basile of Tree Tribe got my attention at the 2016 Nomad Summit when he presented on his eco-fashion company with a passion for sustainability. Since our meeting, Dylan has had a challenging year. At the time of this interview, he’s coming off a 6-month battle with dengue fever, which is a debilitating mosquito-borne disease he contracted in Thailand.

In this episode, we talk about the transition to a nomadic work life, leaving Vancouver’s rainy season, the ins-and-outs of social media strategy at Tree Tribe, as well as the most difficult psychological and physical trial of Dylan’s life—dengue.

I was so inspired by Dylan’s passion for the good work at Tree Tribe, and his resilience through the last half year. I hope you think so too!

“I think it was the shock of being told I couldn’t go back to Chiang Mai and the whole digital nomad community, but I’m getting better and excited to go travel again.” – Dylan Basile

Travel Topics:

  • The Nomad Summit 2016 experience in Chiang Mai [1:15]
  • A successful experiment in becoming location-independent [3:10]
  • How Dylan unfortunately became the dengue expert [10:52]
  • A second bout of dengue nearly cost Dylan his nomadic lifestyle [19:52]
  • The mission behind Tree Tribe’s eco-fashion brand [25:40]
  • An amazing goal to achieve… Planting 40,000 trees!! [29:39]
  • Tree Tribe’s 4 core values: Nature, Adventure, Travel, and Community [30:30]
  • How Tree Tribe customers and fans show their love of the product through social media [33:04]
  • Why Tree Tribe agrees that giving back is worth a cut into the bottom-line [44:05]

Dylan Basile’s Talking Points:

Website | TwitterInstagram

Music Credit:

Take Action:

Sometimes life doesn’t go how we plan. Dylan was on top of his game when dengue fever changed everything. When life takes away choices, how can you stay positive and passionate like Dylan?

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Patrick Daley: True Transient Crosses the USA again, this Time by Canoe

Courtesy of Patrick Daley
Courtesy of Patrick Daley

The True Transient, Patrick Daley returns to the Love Affair Travel Podcast to tell us about another wild adventure across the United States… but this time it’s not by land! The last time we heard from Patrick he was hitchhiking across the country, today we learn of his current journey from NYC to Mexico via a canoe.

I caught up with him 11 days into his journey on a rest, drying out at a Philadelphia diner. In this episode, Patrick talks about funding a 2,600-mile boating expedition through the inter-coastal waterways of 13 different states.

We also focus on the logistics of a truly unique trip, like filming for his True Transient YouTube channel and navigating and packing for this life changing adventure. You don’t want to miss this amazing episode!

“Do something new and more ambitious.”  – Words that inspired Patrick Daley to canoe across the U.S.

Travel Topics:

  • Traveling from New York to Mexico… in a canoe!! [1:45]
  • Google Maps has one weakness: Waterways [6:05]
  • How much gear is too much gear for this kind of trip? (Very Important – Don’t forget to pack your drone) [10:09]
  • How to scout out a good campsite in and out of tidal regions [11:00]
  • Writing a travel memoir via dictation while canoeing… Like Woah! [12:22]
  • How the maiden canoe voyage has made budgeting a challenge [14:56]
  • On the difficulties of editing a video series from a campsite [16:20]
  • Utilizing water canals and locks from the Industrial Revolution-era America [17:38]
  • Canoeing through New York harbor despite experts warnings [19:38]
  • Why a canoe and not a kayak? [20:50]
  • Future dreams to come on Patrick’s journey to Mexico [22:33]

Patrick Daley’s Talking Points:

Website  | YouTube | Instagram | Facebook

Music Credit:

Take Action:

Choosing to canoe across the U.S. was pretty crazy and was at the edge of Patrick’s wildest imagination. What adventure seems too crazy for you to go on? Imagine it and go!

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Taylor Conroy’s Full Force Journey to Change the Fundraising World

Compliments of Taylor Conroy

Taylor Conroy’s energy for life is contagious! Currently, he is the co-founder of Journey, an organization that designs trips for volunteers looking to make a difference by building homes in developing countries.

In his role, Taylor is on a mission to revolutionize the way social change is funded. This is a great interview for travelers looking to make a difference in the world.

Inspired by his passion, we explored his past, where I learned that he has always been driven. Whether it’s high-finance real estate, bodybuilding, firefighting or international volunteer work, Taylor takes on life at full force.

“That’s what made me leave the fire hall, that love for thinking outside the box and creating things that don’t yet exist.” – Taylor Conroy

Travel Topics:

  • Taylor’s bodybuilder beginning [2:00]
  • Life advice… You got to put in the hustle and the heartbreak to get the reward [6:30]
  • The entrepreneurship itch [10:22]
  • How to find a personal guru [14:07]
  • Taylor’s passion for feminist projects [19:15]
  • Yorling’s story: The will of a teenage Nicaraguan woman [21:18]
  • Mr. Rodrigue’s story: A 100-year-old Salvadorian dairy farmer sees his new home [23:51]
  • The power of partnering with an established local non-profit [25:39]
  • What to expect on a Journey trip [26:08]
  • The difference between non-profit and for-profit organizations in the change industry [33:33]
  • Trip participants realize that ‘we, humans, are not as different as we think’ [39:14]
  • The Masai warrior’s four truths [41:07]
  • How to ensure volunteerism is sustainable for the community [44:26]

Taylor Conroy’s Talking Points:

  • Exclusive Love Affair Travel listener offer! Attend a 5-Day life-changing trip to Mexico in late September, build a home for a family living in a slum and connect with a community who wants to change the world. Enter “LoveAffair” into the Promo Code Box at checkout for a trip value of $990 (normally priced at $1,290). 
  • Taylor’s TedX Talk How to Build a School in 3 Hours
  • Taylor’s brainchild for peer-to-peer fundraising Change Heroes
  • Connect with Journey and make a difference:

Website | Facebook | Images

  • Connect with Taylor:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Music Credit:

Take Action:

Taylor found his drive by pushing himself out of his comfort zone. How can you challenge yourself today to manifest a better world?

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Stefan Klumpp: Why Focusing on Happiness Makes this Company more Money

Property of Stefan Klummp
Property of Stefan Klumpp

From high school dropout in Germany, to a self-driving car engineer in Silicon Valley, Stefan’s journey to co-founder of Mobile Jazz is anything but expected.

I heard about Stefan’s innovative ‘happiness first’ business model from Johannes Voelkner of the Nomad Cruise, and knew I had to get Stefan on the show.

In this interview Stefan shares his philosophy on prioritizing happiness over a paycheck, his love for travel, living in a Fiat camper van and spending his days kiteboarding.

“Even today when I talk to people, I sometimes say, ‘If all my businesses went bankrupt, my bank account was set to zero, I wouldn’t be worried because I could leverage my network, leverage my skills and just start up again.'” – Stefan Klumpp

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Travel Topics:

  • How a high school dropout can become a successful entrepreneur [2:08]
  • Moving to Silicon Valley to race self-driving cars through the desert [6:29]
  • Getting hooked on kiteboarding [8:30]
  • Yes…. Island fever is real! [10:10]
  • What to do when you go broke in Spain [13:06]
  • How to become a self-taught mobile app developer [13:20]
  • Ha! Turns out, mobile was not just a fad! [13:49]
  • The simple principles of entrepreneurship [17:57]
  • How to create a unique office environment and pay model for your startup [21:52]
  • Organizational advice: First up – Start spreadsheets! [27:52]
  • Why Stefan took a personal financial hit to grow the business [29:00]
  • Low overhead = Personal freedom [29:46]
  • The simplicity of camper van life [31:11]
  • Security issues inherent with traveling in a camper van [34:32]
  • How Stefan measures happiness [38:06]
  • The nomad working on the beach myth dispelled! [40:13]
  • Clickbait vs Quality content [43:46]

Stefan Klumpp’s Talking Points:

Email | Facebook Website | Vantrepreneur FB Group

  • Connect with Optimizing for Happiness:

Website |  Twitter  | Facebook | Instagram

  • Connect with Mobile Jazz:

Website | Twitter | Facebook

Music Credit:

Take Action:

Money can’t buy you happiness, right? So what makes you happier than money and what are you willing to do for it?