Ros and Alan Cuthbertson are a couple in their late 50's and early 60's from Queensland, Australia. In 2014 they quit the conventional 9 to 5 grind to travel the world full time. They spend part of the year based in the vibrant city of Chiang Mai Thailand and take great pleasure exploring nearby Asian countries, researching content for their travel blog Frequent Traveller.
When they're not exploring Asia, they travel further afield and have over the course of the last few years visited many European destinations, as well as North and South America. They write for travelers in the over 50's age bracket, a group who have the time and money to travel. And they were kind enough to answer some of our questions!
TA: Do you specialize in a particular type of travel?
Cuthbertsons: We specialise in slow travel, spending extended periods in various locations to get the most out of our travel experiences.
TA: What is the best vacation you've ever taken? (Where did you go and why did you love it?)
Cuthbertsons: Around the world in business class on Frequent Flyer points. Visiting Chile, Peru, Spain, Germany, Italy, Morocco, United Arab Emirates, and India. We got to tick off so many bucket list dreams.
TA: What's one place you've always wanted to visit?
TA: What's one thing you ALWAYS pack when you travel?
Cuthbertsons: Ros: Black t-shirts and accessories to get the most out of my carry on wardrobe. Alan: Noise cancelling headphones.
TA: If you could only give a traveler one piece of advice, what would it be?
Cuthbertsons: To work out your budget and take twice the amount of money and work out your wardrobe and take only half the clothes.
TA: What are some of your favorite travel blogs and communities?
Cuthbertsons: YTravelblog and Nomadic Matt. Various Facebook groups.
TA: What would be your #1 recommendation for a place to travel in 2019?
Cuthbertsons: We are planning a road trip across the United States of America.
TA: What are the top 3 websites you use for research/inspiration when planning a trip?
Cuthbertsons: Skyscanner, Booking.com, Google maps.
TA: Do you have any good airport or flight hacks for people traveling by plane?
Cuthbertsons: Choose an airline affiliate, stay loyal, and collect frequent flyer rewards points.
TA: What is your best money-saving tip when dealing with airlines?
Cuthbertsons: Never fly on a weekend if you can avoid it.
TA: How much do you read into online hotel reviews when you're planning a trip? How do you tell good advice from phony ones?
Cuthbertsons: Online hotel reviews are important when planning a trip but sometimes you have to rely on a gut feeling.
TA: What is the best piece of travel advice you've ever been given?
Cuthbertsons: Pack light. It took so many years of lugging large bags to finally get it.
TA: Is there something you think most travelers worry too much about?
Cuthbertsons: Clothes and over-planning. The best travel experiences happen spontaneously.
TA: What are some things you need to keep in mind when planning a vacation for a large group?
Cuthbertsons: Different people have different expectations and you are not going to please everyone all of the time.
TA: What's a travel scam travelers should be wary of? And if you've ever had someone try to pull a scam on you while traveling, please share the story!
Cuthbertsons: Crossing the border from Thailand into Cambodia by bus. The bus companies run a scam to charge you more than double the set visa fee. Just before the border, they will take you to a room with what looks to be an official border office and request that you hand over your passport and money for the visa. This is a scam, it is quite easy to just walk across the border and obtain a visa on your own at half the price.
TA: Which country has surprisingly good food?
Cuthbertsons: Vietnam. I love the French influence and freshness of the herbs used in the dishes.
TA: What was the most romantic place you ever visited with a partner?
Cuthbertsons: The Taj Mahal. We celebrated our anniversary there and it took our breath away.
TA: What is the most beautiful and affordable city you've ever visited?
Cuthbertsons: Santiago, Chile.
TA: Which is the friendliest country you've ever visited? The least friendly?
Cuthbertsons: Thailand is the friendliest -- it's not known as the land of smiles for nothing. Lima, Peru was the least friendly.
TA: Which underrated destination deserves to be more famous and why?
Cuthbertsons: The Czech Republic. Not only is Prague a beautiful city, but the whole country is a destination that has to be experienced. They have cheap beer too.