Feature: World Travel Adventurers

Until recently, I was on a mission to see the world as much as I can before I get married and start a family. Okay that is still my mission BUT… I can do all that even when I become a mom. To show y’all this can happen. Meet the Alexis and Bertaut of the World Travel Adventurers! This couple travel with their two beautiful children ages 3 and 5! Oh by the way, they have been world travelers since they were infants! How dope is that? I had the chance to chat with Alexis.

Alexis, can you tell me why and how did you guys start World Travel Adventurers?

We’ve been traveling as a couple for 12 years and used to post all our photos on Facebook. Friends and family were always asking us questions about our travels and for travel advice. We decided that we should share our knowledge with the world. We started our blog because we LOVE to travel and want to inspire others to travel more, even families with young children.

So many people say that they cannot afford to travel. We want to show everyone that it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to travel the world. We share our tips for experiencing luxury travel for less so that others can take advantage of great deals that they might not have known existed. We rarely pay money for hotels or flights. We pay with credit card points. Traveling with points takes a lot of planning and financial responsibility, but the payoff is huge. Some friends recently compared us to The Points Guy since we have become experts on using travel credit cards to our advantage. They said that we are like The Points Family.

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Alexis & Bertaut’s children playing in the sand at Varadero, Cuba
I am one of those people that is apprehensive traveling with kids. Long plane rides, traveling to different countries with them and for me, I can only sit down for no more than 3 hours before it drives me crazy. How is it traveling with your children?

To be completely honest, it is like riding a roller-coaster. One minute you are at the top bursting with excitement and joy. Then the car heads down the mountain, and you are screaming and ready to lose it. Hahaha!

Seriously though, traveling with young kids is both amazing and challenging. We have had many moments when we asked ourselves “Why did we think this was a good idea?” For example, we road tripped from Baltimore to Chicago when our son was only a few months old and he screamed bloody murder almost the entire drive. We nearly lost our minds. However, the trip was absolutely worth it and the memories that we made as a family are so important.

“We’re so glad we did this” moments far outweigh the tough ones. The impact of traveling that is has on our kids are some of our many proud parent moments. They are both very advanced for their age and we think traveling has a lot to do with that. They remember things from trips at such young ages. They’ve been introduced to different languages, cultures, foods, and landscapes from the time they were a few months old. They are little sponges soaking everything up as their minds become open to the world. It is so wonderful to see as parents.

Wait, so you had stated that you guys can afford travel using points. This can this be done when travelling with the children?

Absolutely. We earned the Companion Pass with Southwest Airlines so our kids fly for free with us, which has saved us thousands of dollars. We also get free breakfast and lounge access at Hyatt hotels thanks to our elite status, which is so helpful when traveling with the kids and saves a ton of money. We also look out for great deals on family-friendly vacations. We took the kids to Disney World and stayed 7 nights in a 2 bedroom condo with 4 2-day passes to Disney parks for less than $1000. It was a promotional gift for attending a time-share presentation and was a great way to do Disney for less.

What??!! That is amazing!!! But do you guys have kid-free vacations?

Since having kids, we started taking some kid-free vacations to recharge our batteries and keep our marriage thriving. Every year we celebrate our anniversary somewhere new while our kids spend time with family. We are so blessed and grateful to have this opportunity. We encourage every couple to take a vacation without their kids each year, whether it’s a local weekend getaway or an all-out luxury vacation. It really is important to keep those flames of passion burning and to fully unwind and relax.

From the 30 countries traveled, what is your favorite place and why?

It is so hard to pick one place when there’s so many places! I’ll pick two (one for each of us),  Maldives and Iceland.

The Maldives are incredibly beautiful with the turquoise crystal clear waters teaming with life thanks to the thriving coral reefs. We snorkeled for days and saw reef sharks, a sea turtle, an octopus, and fish in every color of the rainbow. It was incredible! We stayed at Park Hyatt Maldives, its own tiny island in the middle of the Indian Ocean! Of all the luxurious resorts we’ve stayed in across the world, this is the one to beat! We could talk for days about how much we loved being there- outstanding service, beauty everywhere you look, amazing food. It really is just sheer perfection. We loved it so much that we are planning a return trip for next year.

We visited Iceland last winter and it completely blew us away! The natural beauty is jaw-dropping. There are waterfalls, glaciers, black sand beaches, aurora borealis, blue lagoons, mountains and more. We were only there for 5 days which was way too short. We are planning a return trip there too because we loved it so much. We want to visit during the summer next time to see how different everything looks when it’s not covered in snow. However, we highly recommend a winter visit to Iceland. It truly is a winter wonderland, and you can do things like ice-caving and glacier trekking that are not possible during the summer.

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Alexis & Bertaut in Iceland
My next favorite follow question, your opinion, country with the best food?

That is another hard question to answer! There are so many countries that have delicious food, but we’re going to go with Italy. The Amalfi Coast had some of the best food we ate ever! The fresh tomatoes with buffalo mozzarella and basil are out of this world. Pizza originated in Naples so of course the pizza in that region is to die for! Don’t even get me started on the pasta, fresh fish, and amazing desserts. You cannot leave Italy without eating gelato (preferably every day you are there). I think I gained 10 pounds during our visit because the food is so wonderful and I over-indulged.

Since you mentioned the Park Hyatt Maldives. How do you travel like a millionaire without breaking the bank? What is the secret?

We use credit card points to fly for free in premium cabins, paying only for taxes. For example, we flew Lufthansa First Class from Washington D.C. To Budapest for only $39. We stay in 5-star hotels by paying with credit card points or reward nights earned by opening a credit card. We stay in luxury suites for free after earning reward stays for Leading Hotels of the World. We joined their unlimited member program and earn one free night for every 4 paid stays. We stayed in a $1900/night suite for free at Le Sirenuse on Italy’s Amalfi Coast by using our reward night. It was amazing! We also travel during off-peak season to get lower rates when we don’t have points to travel for free. There are so many ways to save money when it comes to traveling, and we love sharing those tips and tricks with our followers.

Any interesting people y’all met?

We ran into actor Rodrigo Santoro, who played Xerxes in the movie 300, in Cuba. He was very humble and was kind enough to let us take a photo with him.

What is the best experience?

It’s so hard to pick one experience when there have been so many wonderful ones! One of our favorites was flying Emirates First Class on the Airbus A380, which is the airplane featured in the commercial with Jennifer Aniston when she’s in the lounge drinking a cocktail. It has a lounge for first and business class with a huge selection of appetizers and drinks. The bathroom has heated floors and a shower! We barely slept on that flight because we were so excited to experience all the bells and whistles, like drinking Dom Perignon and mingling with everyone in the lounge. It was also our first vacation after launching the blog so was an extra special experience. We were like kids in a candy shop on that flight!

Now to the worst. Worst place you been to?

If I had to pick our least favorite, Moscow. The city is beautiful, but the people there are for the most part not friendly and rarely smile. We are warm engaging people and it was very strange to not have smiles or conversations returned. Also, we were warned by several friends that Russians do not like Black people. As an interracial couple, we were warned that we should be careful there, especially at night. We thankfully were not victims of prejudice other than some stares, but have heard of Black people being chased and beaten up in Russia.

I am thankful to hear that experience didn’t happen to you two. What has been the worst situation you gotten into when traveling?

We were in Cameroon and our son swallowed an entire bottle of Claritin while he was with a babysitter. We had to rush him to the hospital and have his stomach pumped, which is not something you want to do in a third world country. We ended up riding in a taxi to 3 different hospitals because they had run out of anesthesia at each hospital and couldn’t thoroughly pump his stomach while he was awake. In the end, they just put a tube down his throat until he threw up and then sent us to the pharmacy for activated charcoal. It was the scariest experience as a parent ever!

Oh gosh! That sounds terrible, stressful and nerve wrecking! I am so happy to hear he was ok! Any valuable lessons you learned while traveling?

Always have a back-up plan when it comes to your equipment. Bertaut lost his brand new drone in the Maldives when it dropped out of the sky into the ocean. This happened on day 2 of the vacation so he was so upset that he didn’t have his new toy to play with for the rest of our trip. So now he travels with 2 drones- one of which packs up nicely into a small bag. This way if something happens to one, he has another one. Alexis thought it was absurd until we met some other drone enthusiasts who also travel with 2 drones for the same reason. We also had a mishap with our camera during a trip to Cameroon which caused it to stop working. We had no camera for the majority of our vacation, which felt debilitating. Now we travel with way more camera equipment than we’d like to admit, including 2 GoPro cameras, a stabilizer, 2 drones, a DSLR camera, multiple lenses, and of course our iPhones if all else fails.

While you guys are not traveling, what do you two do?

We plan future travels, which is almost as much fun as going on vacation because you always have something to look forward to. Research has actually shown that planning a vacation, even if you don’t intend to take it, increases happiness. We like to watch movies and our favorite show Game of Thrones, have friends and family over to our house for dinner, visit wineries, go explore Baltimore as if we were tourists, and take the kids on fun local outings like roller-skating and visiting museums. Bertaut can also be found flying his drone around our yard while the kids chase it until it is time for bed.

Is there a secret with balancing work and traveling?

Luckily Bertaut works in IT and can do his job from pretty much anywhere as long as he has his phone and internet. This allows us to travel more frequently, although the downside is that he spends hours working while traveling.

I was working full-time until a year ago and now I’m home with the kids, which is the hardest job of all. Traveling is a much-needed way for us all to connect and get quality time together as a family.

What can you guys not leave home without?

Our Iphones. They are an essential tool for our blog.  We can stay connected while traveling  with family and friends back at home, get work done when needed, film insta stories and live sessions, play tunes for road trips, entertain the kids with games and movies, and snap some quick photos if we don’t feel like lugging out our camera.

Last question, and valuable lessons you learned while traveling?

Always have a back-up plan when it comes to your equipment. Bertaut lost his brand-new drone in the Maldives when it dropped out of the sky into the ocean. Now he travels with 2 drones- one of which packs up nicely into a small bag. I thought it was absurd until we met some other drone enthusiasts who also travel with 2 drones. We also had a mishap with our camera during a trip to Cameroon which caused it to stop working. We had no camera for the majority of our vacation, which felt debilitating. Now we travel with way more camera equipment than we’d like to admit, that would be 2 GoPro cameras, a stabilizer, 2 drones, a DSLR camera, multiple lenses, and of course our iPhones if all else fails.

Oh! I forgot one last question. What is the next country?

We’ll be doing mostly short trips throughout the U.S. for the remainder of this year since our daughter starts Kindergarten. But our next international trip will be back to the Maldives with a stopover in the UAE.

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Christmas at Rockfeller Center- New York 
Follow Alexis and Bertaut’s Family travel adventures:

Instagram: @worldtraveladventurers

Twitter: @worldtravelBAT

Facebook- @worldtraveladventurers

Pinterest- @worldtraveladventurers

YouTube- https://YouTube.com/c/WorldTravelAdventurers

 

 

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