Travelling ain’t cheap; who ever said that? Having travelled to 168 countries and made $1 million along the way, 32-year-old Johnny Ward is on his way to achieving his dream of visiting every country in the world; while laughing away to the bank, as well. Sounds surreal, isn’t it? But, Johnny Ward, who comes from a poor Irish family, and hates the idea of working 9-to-5 jobs, has done that and more.
After reading how one travel blogger made money from his site each month, he was spurred into creating his own, OneStep4Ward, even though he had limited technology experience.
Determined to make more, he soon began to rake in around £4,000 monthly and after his initial success, he ended up creating his own digital media company, Step4Ward Media, managing over 200 sites.
Since his business was created in 2012, Johnny takes care of corporate blogging for companies, enhancing their SEO and helping develop their social media presence.
From getting 40 euros from an African company for his first advert, Johnny has made over $1million over the last 3 years from his site.
From feeding wild hyenas’ red meat in Ethiopia to paragliding in the Himalayas and cage diving with great white sharks, Johnny a huge advocate of lifestyle design, feels one only needs to redesign his lifestyle to follow their dreams …
1. Tell us a bit about yourself. Introduce yourself to our readers.
My name is Johnny Ward, from Ireland and aiming to become the first person, and one of the youngest people ever to visit every country in the world. I've managed to make over 1m dollars online whilst doing it too, from blogging and things associated with blogging.
2. How did this all begin? What made you start travelling around the world?
I've always wanted to travel. Growing up in a small town in Ireland, the world seemed so far away, so as soon as I graduated from university I hit the road the next day. That was eight years ago.
3. What are your absolute favourite destinations around the world? What all places did you really love going to?
Iceland, Namibia, Ethiopia and Iran; and oh China - probably my top five.
4 List of Experiences that still keeps you awake at night! Something that gave you goosebumps, yet you would want to do it again?
Sky diving was terrifying, but I did it twice - second time round was a little less scary. Bungee jumping - same issue. Other than that I don't get scared of activities to be honest.
5. Advice for our readers. Which places they should visit now? Which should be the absolute to-dos on your list? (Photos, too)
China - I could travel there for years. The ice festival in Harbin was one of the best things I've ever seen, holding pandas in Chengdu, the gorgeous karst landscape cliffs in Yanghsou; China is an amazing country.
6. Apart from the usual, what are the things that one needs to be careful about while travelling?
I think the road is as safe as being at home to be honest, I don't want to perpetuate wrong fears about traveling being dangerous, and it’s not.
7. What are the things on your bucket list and what remains?
Visiting every country in the world - that's the big one, hope to finish next year. I'd also love to visit Holi festival in India, Cherry Blossom in Japan and Tomatina in Spain.
8. What is one thing/story from your travels that has stayed with you over the years?
I remember driving to 'work' when I was teaching English in Asia. It was sunset, I was working evenings in Chiang Mai at a language school and I nearly hit an elephant coming around the corner on my scooter - i thought "Wow, this is really the life i want". Since then, every day has been a bit of an adventure.
9. How difficult/easy is the handling a full-time job and traversing around the world?
I didn't really quit a job to be honest. I've been living like this for almost ten years, any jobs I had before my online income were temporary because I knew they were just to save money and continue traveling.
10. Tell us a bit about your blog site. How has it helped you make your name in the world of travel domain?
I just speak from the heart. Nothing too professional, nothing rehearsed, I write as I speak so that along with going to places most people don't, has allowed me to build a bit of a following which is pretty cool. I hope to inspire others to follow their dreams, just as I continue to follow mine.