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How Winning A Trip To Thailand Turned Us Into New Zealand Travel Junkies!

...and lead us to start this income-producing website

"Congratulations, you've just won a trip to Thailand..."

Wouldn't that be an exciting phonecall to get?

It was for us. We were tingling from head to toe.

Thailand was meant to be an oasis in the desert. Beautiful, refreshing and enchanting. We knew that we were in for a treat.

But what we didn't know, was that Thailand would change our lives forever...

We'll tell you more about that in a moment. But first, let us introduce ourselves.


Tom and Shaye - New Zealand travel junkies
Shaye and Tom kayaking in the Abel Tasman

Meet Your New Zealand Travel Guides

Hi, we're Shaye and Tom.

Shaye was born in Zimbabwe, but she has been living in New Zealand for over 10 years now.

Tom is a Kiwi. He has lived here his whole life.

We are New Zealand Travel junkies. We get butterflies in our tummy's whenever we think about exploring New Zealand. Whether it's...

  • Jumping off a bridge and plummeting towards the river on the Taupo bungee
  • Gazing out in wonder over lake Waikeremoana from the top of Panekiri bluff
  • Discovering hidden caves on one of New Zealands hundreds of beaches

We love it all.

And the best part about it? All this travelling pays our bills. Yep. Experiencing the best-of-NZ is our job.

People tell us all the time that they'd love to do what we do. After all, it is pretty sweet.

They say they'd love to travel around New Zealand and get paid for it. Heck, they'd like to travel anywhere and get paid for it. But they can't. Their 9-5 job steals away all of their spare time.


But how come we got so lucky? Well our trip to Thailand did nudge us in the right direction. But it wasn't all luck. We put in a lot of hard work too. And it's something we believe is possible for anyone with a bit of brains and motivation.

We'll tell you more about that later though. But first, back to the story...


The excitement for our holiday builds...

beaches in thailand
The beautiful beaches we were going to explore

After the shock of winning a free holiday had worn off, we decided to start one of the best parts of travelling. Planning our trip...

We hopped onto Google to look up images of Thailand.

They were stunning!

We were already imagining ourselves...

  • Relaxing on long white sand beaches overlooking perfect turquoise waters.
  • Exploring out-of-this-world coral reefs in crystal clear water
  • Treking through untouched forest to find pristine waterfalls.

We are real nature lovers. So going to a place bursting with such natural beauty was a thrill for us...


6 months later, we arrived in Bangkok airport

Our first impression of Thailand was great. The food was AMAZING, and the shopping was fun. But the untouched greeny-blue waters were what we'd truly come to see.

Sadly, this never happened.

Our first visit to the beach was horrific!

Coming from such an untouched place like New Zealand we had never seen anything like it. There were...

  • 10 rows deep of sun loungers crammed along the entire beach.
  • Bottles, bags, wrappers and bits of old rubbish floating in the ocean.
  • Noisy longtail boats spouting thick black smoke into the air.

It wasn't quite the paradise we had come to imagine. We left this beach, hopeful that it might have been a once-off.

But every beach we visited was the same. Crowds, rubbish, pollution, dead coral.

It broke our hearts...

Obviously at some stage, it had been a pristine wilderness. But no longer...

We finished our holiday there and returned home disappointed.


Imagine your perfect holiday

Travelling was a bit of a hobby for us. So it was only natural for us to start planning our next holiday the moment we got back to New Zealand.

So we decided to play a little game. The rules were simple. Imagine your perfect holiday.

Natural beauty was something we already knew we loved. Thailand proved that to us.

Tasting local produce was also nice. Exploring new flavours and exotic recipes.

We'd visited many of the pacific islands before. They had amazing beaches, weather and diving.

The luxury option is also nice from time to time too. Why not live like royalty for a while?

Nature, Food, Wine, Adventure, Exploration, Luxury, Activities. Hmmm...

Then suddenly it dawned on us. Our perfect holiday had been right under our noses all along.

New Zealand was what we were looking for!

We had travelled New Zealand before. Many times. But we'd never seen it in this light. It had always just been...well...home.

Now we could appreciate, with the help of our Thailand holiday-flop, exactly how lucky we were.

We already lived in our perfect holiday destination!

From that moment on we made a decision...


To see and experience the best of New Zealand travel

So we started making short trips to new parts of our homeland. A week in Abel Tasman here a weekend in Rotorua there...

We saw amazing things. But to earn more money for travel, we still had to return to work in Auckland.

We dreamed of being able to travel full-time. Exploring our beautiful country was one of our top priorities... we just wished we could do it more often.

And that's when it clicked.

You see, we already ran a couple of websites.


These were both websites that we'd built with the help of SBI!

SBI! stands for site build it. They are a company that help you build income-producing websites based around topics which you're passionate about.

Well we say company, but they're more like a family. They are such a supportive group of people and they're dedicated to helping people break free from the 9-5.

They had helped us grow our websites over the years. And the bigger our websites got...

...the more passive income we earned...

... the less we had to rely on income from our other small business.

We were becoming more and more free with our time. In fact 70% of our income already came from those 2 sites - with less than 20 hours per week required to run them.

So it was only natural for us to start up a website about New Zealand travel - a topic we loved so much.

It would help us take that final step and live life fully on our own terms.


Now we are able to travel our beautiful country as much as we like

This site is still young, but it has already boosted our income. And with the help of our 2 other sites our passive income has grown to support us completely.

It's a freeing feeling.

And like we said earlier, it's something that is possible for anyone. If you're feeling stuck in the 9-5 and would like to get out and see the world more, why not give SBI! a shot. It has an awesome guarantee so you can always get your money back if you're not happy with it. There's nothing to lose really.

Don't worry about it being too technical either. SBI! gives you step-by-step guidance through all the stages of building a website from design and planning right through to monetization.

It's not difficult, it just takes effort.

And it really is worth it. Just for that feeling of knowing you can do anything you want, each day for the rest of your life.

And on that note, we're off now to plan a trip. Thanks SBI! and thank you Thailand. Without you we'd be at work right now.