Imagine being able to travel the world—jumping from Rome to Paris to Tokyo without ever having to spend a dime of your own money. For one single mom, this dream lifestyle became a reality. Suzanne Thatcher, a mom of five kids, has been able to fly across the globe and stay in luxurious hotels for free.
The only catch? She’s had to travel with strange men who she doesn’t know, as well as men who might have been expecting something other than money (if you know what I mean) in exchange for her expenses-paid travel.
Here are the details of Suzanne’s travel arrangements and what she has to say about it…
10. It Started With A Desire To Escape
Having been through two marriages that both ended in divorce, the Floridian single mother felt like she needed to clear her mind and re-discover herself.
“I’d done some traveling with my girlfriends to Mexico and Puerto Rico when I was younger,” she said, “but with five kids, a job and my husband running his own business at the time, it was difficult to get away as I got older.”
9. All Alone And Nowhere To Go
At 52 years of age, Suzanne found herself without a husband for her to share her days with. With her children at the point where they were graduating high school and leaving home for college, she was in a situation where her nest was about to get a whole lot emptier.
8. No Money, Mo’ Problems?
Although she desperately wanted to do something about her situation, she wasn’t exactly in a financial situation that would allow her to jet set around the world. She said, “I was volunteering full-time in local politics and at an animal shelter and didn’t have the means to do so.”
A lack of money wasn’t enough to stop Suzanne, however. Here’s how she solved her problem…
7. Where There’s A Will, There’s A Way
It was a stroke of good fortune when one of Suzanne’s friends turned her on to a website that had the potential to solve her travel problem.
“One of my girlfriends mentioned a website called MissTravel.com—a site for travel-seeking singles—and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to do some of the things I enjoyed.”
6. What Did Her Family Think?
According to Thatcher, her plan to travel the globe with strange men wasn’t met with the warmest of receptions by her family.
“My kids thought it was crazy and a little bit risky, but I am an adventurous person and I knew that if I was diligent and did it my way, it would be an amazing opportunity,” she said.
5. The First Date
Thatcher’s first trip took place in 2016, where she crossed the U.S. from her home in Florida and found herself in Texas.
“I met this guy online and he seemed like a really nice, genuine man,” she explained. During their communication, she learned that he was going to a charity event for motorcycle enthusiasts, and because she had loved motorcycles when she was younger, she decided this was the perfect way to kick off her adventures.
Was the trip all that she hoped it would be? Find out in the next slide…
4. A Taste Of The Good Life
It’s safe to say that Thatcher’s first date didn’t disappoint. Not only did she end up staying in a five-star hotel, she was also able to enjoy luxuries that definitely weren’t a part of her everyday life.
“We had amazing food and drink and went to the event on a motorcycle, with a police escort from our hotel to the ball because there was a huge crew together,” she said. “It was so fabulous and so much fun.”
3. Suzanne’s Terms And Conditions For Travel
One important thing that Suzanne insists she made clear to both the man on her first date, as well as all subsequent men who she traveled with, is that these trips were strictly non-sexual.
She says that she makes sure not to mislead the men she dates by telling them that they have to have separate rooms on their trips and that she won’t do anything she isn’t comfortable with.
Were the men she talked to all happy with this arrangement? Based on the next slide, it definitely seems that way!
2. Once She Started, She Couldn’t Stop
After her first trip was such a success, Suzanne knew that she wanted more. As she returned to MissTravel.com, she met another man who, sadly, had recently lost his wife.
Understanding Suzanne’s strict, non-sexual travel policy, the man simply wanted a travel partner to provide him companionship. He let Suzanne choose where she wanted to travel, and she decided on Rome.
Once again, Thatcher lived in the lap of luxury, enjoying amazing food and wine and first-class travel on a 10-day adventure.
1. Will Her Travels Continue?
Despite thoroughly enjoying her travels, Suzanne maintains a balanced outlook. “Starting a new job, it has been hard to have time off. I have had a couple of offers to go places, but it’s just not possible right now. I have lots of plans for the future though,” Suzanne explained.
Where might future dates take her?
“I’d love to go to Tahiti or London or Japan,” she says. And is she open to the possibility of a love connection in the future? “I was never really looking for love. I wasn’t ruling it out but I wanted to meet people with a common love of travel. There are still so many places I want to see.”