BlogHouse is in the house – again! When I tell you that BlogHouse is an experience, one of the main reasons why are the people, from the owner/planner (the fabulous Lisa Lubin) to the mentors and host city delegates, to the fabulous group of bloggers that get together for a long weekend to soak up knowledge and get what they need to take their travel blogs to the next level.
It’s the people, period. One of those peeps is today’s Traveler Tuesday spotlight, Susie of Dabble in Travel. Besides being a blogger who has been all over the world, and of course Indianapolis where we met (check out Susie’s guide to Indianapolis), she also has a travel coaching service that provides curated personalized itineraries.
Let’s meet travel blogger Susie!
 When and how did you become a traveler?
I didn’t catch the travel bug until my first international trip when I studied abroad in Nantes, France. As luck would have it, the very first day of that trip started out with a sighting of the Queen in her Golden Jubilee parade in London! That summer I bounced from country to country, became enthralled by all the different languages, history, and of course all of the incredible food. I was absolutely hooked and my love of travel has grown ever since.
 What kind of traveler do you define yourself as?
I would consider myself a travel hacker. After college, I traveled for work almost every week for a number of years. I got really into the loyalty program and credit card points game, which allowed me to travel extensively very inexpensively. I took a career break with my husband, Jan, and we backpacked for a year around the world on a strict budget, but always looking for the best value we could get for our money. Our points covered all of our long-haul flights and a few fancy hotel stays on that trip that took us to all 7 continents. Now Jan travels for work and he’s the one earning the points!
 What do you love most about traveling?
The excitement and anticipation of going somewhere I’ve never been before. Seeing a place for the first time brings a childlike outlook to the world that I can’t get enough of.
 What do you dislike about traveling?
The flip side of going to new places is navigating unfamiliar environments. I dislike having my guard up in places that are considered less safe. Of course, I don’t go to truly unsafe places, but there are plenty of places where for example, pickpocketing is prevalent. Constantly being on guard can get exhausting by the end of the day! Better safe than sorry though…
 Why should people travel?
To meet people from other cultures and learn about their way of life. Different isn’t always bad. The more people can experience this firsthand, the more compassion, patience, and open-mindedness it would lead to, which the world definitely needs.
 What famous person would you like to travel with?
Samantha Brown. She’s very personable, shares my birthday, and through her TV shows has to have lots of connections to chefs, locals, and important people to open doors around the world.
 What won’t you travel without?
A camera to capture the memories. But truth be told, my husband is a WAY better photographer than I am!
 Travel essentials – 3 things you always travel with
Aside from the obvious phone, passport, and credit card…
Earplugs – they are my secret weapon for sleeping on redeye flights or in noisy hotels
Packing Cubes – I was a skeptic, but now I never leave home without them
Mini Power Strip – Perfect for charging all your electronics at once when your accommodations has limited outlets, plus you don’t have to bring as many adapters with you for foreign destinations
 If you’re a foodie, what’s your favorite food city? Do you have a restaurant recommendation?
Rome, Italy. I was lucky enough to work there for 5 months. I have a laundry list of restaurants, but one special place for me is a restaurant in Trastevere called Cacio e Pepe, which is where I had the namesake dish for the first time and fell in love. It doesn’t quite rival my love of truffles, but it’s pretty close. If you ever get the chance to go truffle hunting – do it!
 What’s one location on your bucket list?
The Galapagos Islands
 Do you have a piece of advice for bloggers starting out?
Take time to define your niche and what makes you different from all the other bloggers out there. What is your unique story or perspective that you are bringing to the table? Why are you the one to write the stories you do?
Susie’s Lightning Round of Favorites
Airport: Singapore Changi Airport
Mode of Transportation: Trains
City or Country: Italy will always have my heart, but Hoi An, Vietnam is a close second
Travel Gear: Quick drying underwear like ExOfficio or Patagonia are perfect for long-term travel
Travel snack: Larabars – Apple Pie and Cherry Pie are my favorite flavors
Book: The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau helped me start my travel planning business to help others explore the world
Movie: Not necessarily my ultimate favorite, but Pitch Perfect was one of the few movies we had on our round the world trip, so I can practically recite it
Song: Along those lines, whenever I hear Wake Me Up by Avicii it reminds me of our RTW trip and makes me happy
How about you? What would you like to know about Susie?
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