Mike Swigunski is a bestselling author, remote work leader, and founder of GlobalCareerBook.com. As an online business expert that has brokered millions of dollars in digital assets and also helped build an eight-figure remote company, he has cultivated a strong passion and knowledge for everything within the remote work realm. Mike is focused on transforming the way location-independent work and business synergize. After more than a decade of working remotely and internationally in more than 85 countries, Mike has built a unique 360-degree view of the remote workforce. He loves sharing his knowledge and experience to help others succeed.
What are three of your favourite countries, and why?
After spending more than a decade living overseas, here are three of my favourite destination for living in, and all three are also great travel hubs.
Georgia (The Country)
After spending the last year living in Tbilisi, I have truly found a country that checks just about every box I look for when living in a foreign country.
- 1-Year Tourist Visas: Georgia allows you to stay for up to a year, and then you can easily border hop to get another year. No more annoying visa issues!
- Cost of Living: The value in Georgia is unlike anywhere else I have seen in the world; every aspect here, from your apartment costs to food, is extremely good value!
- Travel Hub: There are a lot of easy and cheap destinations nearby to visit. Flights to Italy, Cyprus or Turkey can be purchased for under $50.
- Friendly Expats & Locals: Tbilisi has a really great mix of expats and locals, which allows for a great hybrid community!
Czech Republic (Czechia)
After living and working in Prague for over a year, I truly fell in love with the Czech Republic. Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and has such an interesting history and culture. I was fortunate to work at a Czech university, teaching Financial Economics and had a really great experience working with locals. When you factor in some of the best beer in the world and so many interesting locations outside of Prague.
I spent about two and half years living in Korea and studying my MBA. Overall it was such an interesting experience, and I loved learning about how unique and fascinating Korean culture is. Studying and working in Korea allowed me to really immerse myself and build strong relationships with my classmates, who treated me like family! Korean food is so delicious, and the country has something for everyone.
Are there any countries you don’t like visiting?
Even though I had a great time visiting some friends and employees in Bangladesh. I have to say, outside of that meeting, it did not give me the greatest first impression. With a convoluted visa process to enter the country and also a frustrating experience departing the country, overall it was a pretty negative experience and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone unless you are going to visit friends or family!
What are three of your favourite cities, and why?
I normally like to break destinations into two different categories. Long-term destinations that I would love to live and short-term places that I love to visit. These three cities would fall into the latter category!
I think Tokyo is one of the cities where the atmosphere is so unique and energetic. In addition to this, there is so much to do and see in Tokyo and it’s one of my favourite destinations to visit. In addition to this, there are so many amazing food options, and it’s a great spot to start off a Japan adventure.
With some of the most amazing food, architecture and history. Rome is truly one of the best cities to visits since there is so much to see and do here. One of my favourite memories is strolling the city at 6 am for a sunset, and it felt like we had the entire city to ourselves.
The first time I visited London, I was so intrigued by everything this wonderful city had to offer. From the double-decker busses, delicious food markets, extensive museums and various pubs, London has something for everyone!
What are three of the worst places you have stayed?
I can’t remember the name since a friend booked it. The place was located right near the train station. The elevator was full of used syringes, and the hostel room was quite dirty, dim-lit and not a great experience. This was the last time our friend was allowed to book accommodation on this trip!
Amancay Hostal Patagonico
Patagonia is notorious for having some horrid accommodation and extremely expensive rates. This place had friendly staff/owners, but our room was crawling with bugs and spiders.
This is another one of those destinations, where accommodation can be extremely expensive and where the service does not correlate. After visiting Paris around seven times, I have yet to have a fantastic stay in the city. Everywhere I stayed was disappointing and hopefully, since this was all pre-Airbnb, things have maybe improved?
Do you have any favourite hotels or restaurants?
Paragraph Resort Shekvetili, Georgia
This place is one of my favourite hotels in the world since it has so much to do and is in a beautiful location by the Black Sea. A 150-meter swimming pool, water slides, black sand beaches and one of the most impressive aquariums I have ever seen! Top this off with delicious food, fantastic service and loads of other activities!
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
The Maldives is one place that lived up to our high expectations and even exceeded them! The Conrad was extremely impressive, with an underwater restaurant, luxury overwater bungalows, whale shark swimming, and so much more. It is truly a paradise destination.
What are three of your favourite travel moments, and why?
I love basing my travels around events and experiences that push me out of my comfort zone. That’s why all three of these are some of my favourite travel moments!
Driving a huge tank in the snow-covered outskirts of Vilnius, Lithuania.
Hiking on one of the largest glacier’s in the world located in Patagonia. Perito Moreno, which is located in Argentina.
Hitchhiking around the entire South Island of New Zealand.
What are three of your worst travel moments, and why?
Overall I always try to learn from every negative experience and find the silver lining, but here are a few of them:
Fracturing my knee and having to get surgery. Having knee surgery anywhere in the world is no fun, even though everything went well!
Missing a ferry in Greece, we showed up early and were directed to an area to wait for the boarding. The person gave us the wrong information, and we ended up missing the boat. Luckily, they realized their mistake and booked us on the next ferry, which was about an hour later.
Getting extremely sick in India and having to call a doctor to our hotel. Fortunately, the doctor was able to prescribe our medicine, and we felt much better after 48-hours.
What are three of your best travel tips?
Over the past three years, I’ve been travelling full-time with a small carry-on backpack. With all of the flights I take, it literally saves me days of time every year since I skip the check-in process and breeze straight through security. Also, there is a lot less stress.
Plan Events & Experiences
For each big trip, I try to plan a big event or experience and even better when it’s with people I love and care about, like friends and family. It can be as easy as staying with a local family, Couchsurfing, or as extreme as driving a tank!
Cash is King
Even though I do a lot of credit card hacking (25+ credit cards and an 815 credit score), cash will always be king, and I suggest at least having a minimum of $200-300 in USD at all times when travelling. I’ve had electricity go out on islands and a number of other situations where cash truly was a lifesaver!