How Backpacker Will Hatton Turned into a Traveling Entrepreneur to Live a Life of Adventure

Adventurer Will Hatton

I’m Will Hatton, a backpacker turned entrepreneur on my quest to live an awesome life of adventure. I run The Broke Backpacker where I blog about how to travel the world on a shoestring budget. I first hit the road nine years ago and I’ve been traveling almost none-stop since then. I like to get off the beaten track and over the last two years I’ve spent a lot of time in The Middle East. I met my wife whilst hitchhiking across Iran and I recently started a tour company leading intrepid explorers into the Pakistani mountains.

When I first hit the road, I had no money, no plan and just a battered tent for company. I learnt a ton by traveling broke, it proved to be the greatest opportunity for personal development I had ever come across and it forced me to think on my think, to spot opportunity and to solve problems. I’ve traveled to over a hundred countries. When I met and fell in love with my wife. I had to go from broke backpacker to successful entrepreneur, fast, or we would not be able to be together. I worked my ass off for a year, starting my tour company but also launching an adventure travel gear company and putting hundreds more hours into my blog. It was a tight and stressful year but, we made it and now we pull in five figures a month from our online ventures, more than enough to support a life of travel.

Adventurer Will Hatton

How and why did you get into adventuring/traveling?

A traumatic, life changing, injury at the age of 19 saw my hopes to join the marines dashed and my life turned upside down. I hit the road because I felt as though the alternative was putting a gun to my head and pulling the trigger. When traveling, I was able to move past a lot of stuff and reinvent myself, and my future. Pretty much my entire adult life I have been backpacking.

Adventurer Will Hatton

How do you finance your adventures?

To start off with, I used to buy spices, leather satchels and textiles in India and then sell them at festivals in the UK. I worked on moshavs in Israel, herding goats. I sold weed on the beaches of Goa. I have always loved writing so eventually I started a blog.

Over the last couple of years, this blog has exploded in popularity and I have worked hard on producing top notch information that can teach others how to ditch their desks and hit the road, even if they don’t have much money. I love to travel because for me it represents freedom. The ultimate freedom though is financial freedom and now I aim to make a million dollars online by the time I’m thirty two. I make good money out of my blog and I excel at SEO and affiliate marketing. Using the lessons learnt from running a travel blog, I have started a bunch of other online ventures. My travel blog brings in good money but it isn’t going to make me rich, luckily I know what will – I’ll be blogging all about how to earn money online at Ditch Your Desk in 2018.

Adventurer Will Hatton

How do you eat and sleep on the road?

I camp out a lot and often cook my own food when traveling. Back in the day, I really was a hobo wanderer. These days, I have a beautiful wife to sleep next to so I usually opt for a bed! I always travel with a camping stove and over the years that’s saved me a fortune. I’ve Couchsurfed all around the world as well as sleeping in caves or fields. Workaway has also been a solid way to find food and board in exchange for some work over the years although these days I have my own work to get on with. Even if you have no money, it’s totally possible to survive on the road – you just have to be willing to put yourself out of your comfort zone and to work hard when the opportunity arises to do so.

Adventurer Will Hatton

How do you bring your things with you?

I have one main backpack, my Osprey Aether, and then a daypack as well for mini adventures. My wife carries all of our travel photography equipment in a specially designed camera bag and that makes a big difference. Back in the day, I didn’t have as much stuff but these days I have quite a lot of gear – laptops, cameras, etc. as we need this stuff to be able to work properly online. I’ve been living out of my Osprey Aether backpack for years, it does the job and it’s big enough to hold all my gear. Osprey gear is tough and comes with a lifetime warranty so it’s well worth splashing out on – I’ve sent my bag in for free repairs twice now and, both times, Osprey have been awesome.

Adventurer Will Hatton

How do you organize things in your bags?

Packing cubes are a bit of a lifesaver to be honest. I always keep my travel laptop, which is kind of like my second wife, in my daypack with my cash and other valuables because that way I know I only have one bag that I absolutely can’t lose. The other bag carries clothes and camping equipment. Honestly, I would like to carry less and I have gotten good at doing massive trips with about 10kg of gear, most of that is tech.

What has been your best adventuring purchase below $100?

Definitely my Backpacking camping hammock – this lets me camp out pretty much anywhere without having to carry a heavy tent around. I also never travel without my Leatherman Skeletool.

Adventurer Will Hatton

What is your best advice for other adventurers?

My advise is if you want to travel, just go for it. It’s very easy to make excuses but just get out there and make it work – if you want it bad enough, you can always make it happen. There are ways to travel super cheap and lots of options to make money on the road, you just need to get inventive.

Adventurer Will Hatton

What will the future bring

I’m very excited for the future. 2018 is going to be the year that I am finally in position to make a lot of my dreams a reality. I will base myself, for the first time in nine years, in one country so I can focus on teaching others how to make money online and improving the product range of Active Roots, my adventure gear company. I also plan to revisit Pakistan in 2018 and to explore Vietnam by motorcycle.

Follow Will Hatton on his website and follow him on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter


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