I’m Brianne Miers, and I’m a Boston-based travel blogger who is working to see the world by balancing my career as a communications consultant with a life of travel. Read on to learn more.
When did my “traveling life” begin?
I was a lucky 11-year-old girl from New Jersey when I accompanied my parents, my younger brother and my dad’s high school social studies class on a three-week trip to China. That was all it took for travel to consume my every daydream – and every spare dollar and hour of vacation time – for the next 20+ years.
However, since my parents were teachers, and we lived in a small town, most of our vacations were to destinations within driving distance – various battlefields, museums and historical sites (and yes, the Jersey Shore too!). In addition to China, my only other international trips during elementary school and high school were visiting a pen pal in Canada, and spending a whirlwind week in Europe – visiting London, Brussels and Amsterdam – during my freshman year.
How have I traveled so much?
I knew from the moment I entered Syracuse University that I was going to study abroad. SU has an extensive study abroad program, so I was able to spend spring semester of my junior year in the lovely Alsacien city of Strasbourg, France. Thanks to the program’s focus on “European Identity,” we traveled nearly every weekend to other cities like Amsterdam and Paris, and on a week-long class throughout Eastern Europe.
After college, I moved across the country to Boulder, Colorado, and spent nearly three years at an intense job with a low salary and few vacation days, so most of travel was back to New Jersey to visit family. When I returned to the east coast for graduate school at The George Washington University, I knew I wanted to make the most of having a summer off, so I volunteered for two months teaching English in Pokhara, Nepal.
As my career progressed in DC and then Boston, I became a pro at being very creative with budgeting and vacation days. Two years ago, I founded my own communications consulting company, Kind Communications, with the goal of having more flexibility to travel. While self-employment definitely has its challenges, I’ve been able to enjoy opportunities that would not have been possible with a full-time job.
Where have I been?
To date, I’ve been to more than 50 countries – my favorites include Thailand, Colombia and Croatia. Recent travels included spending two months in Southeast Asia during Fall 2014 and two months in India during Winter 2015 working for The Travel Scientists. 2015 highlights were Colombia and Peru, and in 2016, my international trips included Quebec City (Canada), Ireland and the Philippines.
Where am I going in 2017?
2017 is gearing up to be a big year of travel. Here’s what I’m up to:
- January: I made two trips to New York City – the first to meet up with my college friends for a reunion, and the second to attend the IMM TravMedia conference.
- February: I visited my family in New Jersey and accompanied my parents on a day trip to Hershey, PA.
- March: I did a day trip with friends to Portsmouth, NH for Beer Week.
- April: I spent a weekend in Asheville, NC, with friends, followed by a weekend in Milwaukee, WI, for my third Women in Travel Summit. I left at the end of the month for a week-long press trip to Warsaw and Krakow, Poland, with Visit Poland.
- May: Soon after returning from Poland, I flew to Cartagena, Colombia, where I boarded the Nomad Cruise and sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to Lisbon, Portugal (making stops in St. Maarten, Antigua and Funchal).
- June: After a weekend in Porto, Portugal, I made my first visit to Spain, splitting my time between Barcelona and Madrid. After returning to the U.S., I went to BlogHouse in Indianapolis, IN, and a wedding in Denver, CO.
- July: My dad and I attended our 7th Green River Festival together in Greenfield, MA.
- August and September: I spent most of late summer focused on work after months of travel, but I did squeeze in a visit to Lake Placid, NY.
- October: I spent a weekend in Sleepy Hollow, NY, and then made a whirlwind trip to through Charleston, SC, Jekyll Island, GA, and Savannah, GA.
- November: I’ll be heading to Guatemala for a week with GoodTrip Tours.
What are my interests?
I started this blog in summer 2015 with the goal of encouraging professionals to take time away from their busy lives to travel. I wanted to share stories of those of us who have responsibilities like jobs, homes, pets, as well as spouses and children, yet still make travel a priority to inspire others to do so too. I also enjoy providing travel advice and tips based on what I’ve learned over the years in order to make travel easier and more accessible.
Given my “day job” working with non-profit organizations, I have a strong interest in responsible travel. To help encourage others to travel responsibly, I represent several organizations in this space including Giving Way, Visit.org and Travel+SocialGood. My other areas of expertise include solo female travel, budget travel, long-term travel, and adventure travel.
What is my blogging philosophy?
I have never accepted advertising on my blog, and I have never accepted a sponsored post (paid content). However, I have received complimentary travel experiences, including hotel stays and tours, in exchange for promotion on my blog and social media channels. I will only partner with brands that I have already used or would use during the normal course of my life and travels – not just because they’re offering me a “freebie.” My reviews are completely honest and not influenced by these companies in any way.