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Born and raised in NYC, I am a freelance travel and lifestyle journalist residing in Lisbon, Portugal. When I'm not writing for publications, I'm working on my first children's book or helping clients pursue freelance writing and fulfill their dreams about moving abroad.
Travel has been good to me—in less than a decade, I went from a fear of flying to living abroad in four beautiful countries. I can still remember preparing for my first trip. Like many workaholics, I found myself checking my emails in the middle of the night and my eyes focused on a sale that seemed too good to be true. I called the number listed on the agency's website and in less than thirty minutes, I had booked an eight-country Eurotrip (including transportation, accommodation, and meals) for $1500 USD and roundrip tickets from New York City to London for $400 USD.
I sat in disbelief as I contemplated if I made the right move. I'd never been on a flight, nor had I ever traveled without family. Fearful of traveling in a flying can, I debated asking for a refund. Thankfully, my colleagues talked that fear out of me—and I had five months to prepare for a trip that ultimately changed my life.
I learned a lot about myself during that month-long trip. I experienced almost every emotion imaginable and thanks to some amazing conversations with my well-traveled tripmates, I absorbed enough information to plan subsequent solo trips throughout the Americas and Europe. Within two years, I'd mustered the confidence to move to Australia, New Zealand, Spain, and Portugal.
Although I had never visited Australia or New Zealand before moving abroad, I created a strong network to make friends, find love, and help me find housing and gainful employment. Spain and Portugal were a bit different since I'd visited both countries at least twice before making the move. Still, I had to build a wider network while learning the local languages. Within weeks of arriving, I'd learned to read and speak Spanish and Portuguese well enough to complete paperwork, ask questions, negotiate long-term accommodations and make local friends.
Writing has been my saving grace while living abroad, but I never fathomed making a living from it until 2020, when I wrote an essay for Essence Magazine detailing my experience with corporate burnout and managing depression and PTSD. It was raw and vulnerable; and resonated with more people than I could have imagined. I secured features in Fodor's Travel, PopSugar, Your Tango, and Black Ballad UK the following month. Since then, I've gone on to write for major and independent publications like Insider, Viator (a Trip Advisor company), Pipeline Artists, and Cuisine Noir.
Like travel, freelance writing changed my life. Both experiences have been highly therapeutic and provided real-world expertise, confidence, and education I couldn't buy. I enjoy writing customer-service and AI-oriented B2B SaaS content and B2C sales enablement copy for entrepreneurs—and have been doing so since 2021. Freelance writing has empowered me to live the life of my dreams, working whenever I want; however I want, and from wherever I want.
If you're curious about life abroad, I recently started a blog! In it, you'll find my best tips for making friends. Saving Money While Traveling and How to Move to Spain are also invaluable resources. I even have a blog about navigating co-working spaces and working remotely as an introvert. If you're interested in reading about my adventures or what I've learned over the past decade of traveling and living abroad, scroll through the blog and check out the stunning visuals in my gallery.
Need help writing your first freelance pitch? Or are you ready to take your freelance writing to the next level. Perhaps you need a strategy for moving abroad or help planning a solo trip? Let's chat. I'm happy to help you find the perfect solution!
Quia Bethea | Freelance Writer
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