Today we meet the lady with itchy feet but is someone who left her heart in Japan. Please meet Laura Iancu of Travelers Universe.
What is your name?
Which country do you come from/call home?
I was born in Romania. I moved to Spain when I was 19. After visiting Japan, I kind of left my heart there. My body believes I’m in the USA because I cannot wake up until noon and I go to bed well after midnight. It’s complicated.
Are you a backpacker/long term traveller/business traveller/live and work abroad?
Although I have a place I call home and friends I’ve known for more than five minutes, I can’t stay put for too long. I get itchy feet quickly. So I try to go on trips as often as I can. Sometimes it’s just a weekend getaway, other times it’s two months of slow travel. It all depends.
How do you fund your travel (savings/work whilst travelling/other)?
I’m a freelancer, so I work all the time; even when I travel.
What is the first trip you remember taking and how old were you?
It was a school trip I affectionately remember for I had the biggest backpack in the group. So I learned at the tender age of 13 that packing light is the way to go. I guess I was so traumatized by the experience, that even now I consider this one of the best travel tips I can give anyone.
Have you been anywhere which turned out to be totally different to how you imagined? If so, how?
Tokyo. When my husband suggested we went to Japan, I was okay with it, but I wasn’t over the moon. My Japan bucket list at the time had exactly two items ‘Sip tea with a cat on my lap in a cat café’ and ‘Eat sushi’. I fell in love with Tokyo and Shibuya in particular. It was love at first sight and I left a piece of my heart there. In the end, leaving Japan was one of the most difficult things I did in my life.
Have you had any bad experiences whilst travelling?
Not really. At least not something with long lasting consequences. There was this time the hotel’s kitchen caught fire in the middle of the night and we had to evacuate and spend the rest of the night in the parking lot. It was cold and there was no breakfast in the morning, but luckily nobody got hurt.
Where is your favourite place in the world?
Tokyo. But Paris is a close second for all the obvious reasons.
Do you have a bucket list? If so what is on it?
Of course! Right now at the top of my bucket list are Iceland, Greenland, Canada, New Zealand and Antarctica.
Can you imagine life without travel?
Can you imagine life without air?
If you were not travelling what would you be doing instead?
I would be dreaming of the day I could travel again and trying to do something about it.
What is the name of your travel blog and the url?
Travelers Universe – http://www.travelersuniverse.com
When did you begin your website?
Travelers Universe is my newest project. I only started posting on it regularly in June 2015.
Why do you write (for money/connecting with people/therapeutic/fun)?
All of the above.
What makes your site so unique and why should people read it?
I’ve been blogging for seven years or so – I had other blogs before Travelers Universe. I learned a lot in the process, and I want to share this knowledge with my readers, help them not only to travel more and live life to the fullest, but also help them start their own blog and make money with it if so they wish.
Do you have any products or services to offer?
Yes, I wrote a book titled ‘Aim For The Stars: How to Get Out of The Comfort Zone, Live More and Become More‘.
It’s a personal development book; a step-by-step guide from acknowledging your dreams to taking action and fulfilling them. Right now the book is free with a Kindle Unlimited subscription.
What has been your most successful blog post to date and what was it about?
My ‘10 Things to Do in Brussels Besides Eating Waffles’ article got over 10,000 views so far. It’s a fun article about the best things to do in the EU capital, as the name suggests. The runner-up is ‘30 Places to Visit and Things to Do in Valencia’. It’s a very dear post to me, since Valencia is my adoptive city.
What has been your favourite article to write either for your blog or another publication?
It must be ‘10 Lessons I Learned From Writing My First Book’. It’s a very personal and emotional post for me. I just had to write it.
What is your favourite mode of transport? (plane/train/boat/car)
Train and car. I tend to get sick on the plane and end up with horrible headaches. It’s simply not fun.
What camera do you use?
I have a Canon 6D, which has an integrated GPS – that makes it the perfect DSLR for a traveler.
What lenses do you use?
Do you have any advice or tips for aspiring travellers?
Take control of your fears and you will take control of your life. It’s a beautiful world out there. You don’t want to be on your deathbed with a luggage full of regrets next to you. Go live your life!
What has travel taught you?
You have no way of knowing if you are capable of something or not until you have to face that situation.
Quick fire questions:-
Favourite country? Switzerland
Favourite city? Tokyo
Favourite beach? A secluded black sand beach in Bali
Favourite food? Foie gras sushi
Favourite language? French
Please provide the following:-
Website url? http://www.travelersuniverse.com
Twitter handle? https://twitter.com/MariaLauraIancu
Facebook page? https://www.facebook.com/TravelersUniverseMagazine
Google+ profile/page? https://plus.google.com/u/0/110877871709290597487