Posted Date: January 3, 2021
The time has finally arrived where you are preparing to tell your boss you’re leaving your job. Only, you’re not just leaving to go to another company, you’re quitting your job to travel the world. Since this is probably new territory, you may be wondering what exactly you should say, how much notice to give, and should you mention that you are leaving to travel?
These are all excellent questions. This blog post will cover how to inform your boss or manager that you are leaving and provides you with three pre-written email templates that you can copy and paste for your official resignation letter.
What Was My Experience Like Leaving Your Job to Travel?
I remember exactly how I felt as I asked my boss if she had a minute to chat with me on the morning I was announcing my resignation. My heart was beating with excitement and my thoughts raced around my mind with what I was going to say. Even though I had prepared beforehand what I was going to say, I still felt a bit anxious and nervous.
My boss must have assumed I was going to announce my resignation with an impromptu meeting like that, but what she did not expect was that I wasn’t leaving because of another job offer. I was leaving to fulfill a lifelong dream to travel, and she was happy for me.
Immediately after telling her, a huge weight was lifted off my chest. All the responsibility, workload, and stress that comes from working a job floated away in an instant. Suddenly my big plans to travel the world with my wife were right in front of me, and I could not wait to get going.
I wish I could capture and store that feeling forever in a bottle. There are very few moments in life as liberating as telling your boss you are quitting your job to travel the world. After all, this is the first major domino to fall on your way to jet setting around the globe.
How Much Time Should I Give Myself Between When I Quit and When I Start Traveling?
One question we often get asked is how much time should you give yourself between the day you quit your job and the day you start your travels. This is the first question you should ask because it will determine when you need to inform your manager and when your last day in the office will be.
As a general rule, I would highly recommend at least two weeks and probably no more than four weeks. As a long-term traveler, one week would definitely be rushing it, and anything longer than four weeks means you are dipping into your travel budget.
Giving yourself a two-week buffer will give you enough time to run errands, move out of your apartment, sell your belongings, and take care of any last-minute business such as packing.
Jenoa and I both left our jobs four weeks before our trip started, and we were glad we had the time so we didn’t feel rushed and could see friends and family. So in general, two to four weeks should give you all the time you need to wrap up all your loose ends before you hop on a plane.
Now that you know when you should tell your boss you are quitting, how do you do it? How do you bring up the point that you are leaving to travel? Since this is new territory, let’s go over the best way to politely quit your job to travel the world.
I’ll break it down into two parts. First, how to tell your boss that you’re leaving your job, and secondly, how to write a formal resignation email (aka your two weeks notice).
How to Politely Tell Your Boss You’re Quitting Your Job to Travel
Since both Jenoa and I have quit our jobs to travel, let’s walk through a couple of do’s and do not’s.
1. Tell your boss in person that you are leaving your job.
The best way to inform your boss that you are leaving is to do it in person or over a video call if you work remotely. During this time, you can personally thank your boss for the support they’ve given you in your career, for the skills you’ve gained, and for the good experiences you’ve had working at your organization. It’s always polite to tell your boss in person that you are planning to leave.
2. Share with your boss that you are leaving your job to travel the world.
You may be tempted to skip over this part with your boss, but it is worth sharing with them. Some may not understand your decision of why you’d leave your job to travel, but this is a major milestone in your life. You should be proud of yourself for working so hard to get to this point of being able to travel long-term.
In most cases, your boss will be happy for you, even if they are sad to see you leave the team. I made sure to express to my boss that traveling was a life goal of mine and that I felt it was something I personally needed to do in my life.
3. Give plenty of notice – if possible.
I met with my boss six weeks before my final day of work to inform her I was quitting. I did this out of respect for her, and so that I could help find my replacement, write training materials, document processes, and wrap up outstanding projects. I know my boss appreciated the advanced notice.
However, I know that not every situation will allow you to do that. Some of you may feel like if you give an advanced warning, you may be dismissed from your position then and there. If that’s the case for you, then give your two weeks notice as the bare minimum. That will at least cover the conventional standard.
4. Be honest, yet polite about your experience working at the company.
Many organizations have exit interviews where they will ask you for candid responses about your experience working at the organization. Be honest with yourself and with your employer about what you liked and areas where you hope to see improvement within the organization. If you had any negative experiences, your feedback can be valuable in helping bring about meaningful change for future employees.
5. Be helpful.
Your last few weeks of work may feel long and tedious, but offer to help with the transition – whether that is writing training documents, wrapping up important projects, or bringing your replacement up to speed.
Leaving a positive last impression can go a long way to getting positive work reviews or letters of recommendation from bosses, co-workers, or the employees that you manage. Remember, it is always better to be helpful and kind as you quit your job than not.
6. Express gratitude.
One of the best ways to leave a position is to express gratitude to your boss, your co-workers, and your employees. Thank them for the opportunities you have been given during your time at the organization.
When you meet with your boss to inform them of your resignation, don’t forget to thank them for the opportunities they have given you. After all, it was this job that helped you save up enough money to travel the world.
7. Do not burn bridges.
When leaving your job, you may feel inclined to let your employer know exactly how you feel about their managing style, their business practices, or the culture that exists in the office.
Be honest and open, but do it with tact. Do not attack individuals at your organization. You never know who will be a connection in the future, and soon enough, you’ll be so distanced from your old job that none of the items eating you up inside will even matter.
It’s true what they say, distance makes the heart grow fonder, and the longer you are removed from your old employer, the less it will bother you.
8. Do not quit over text.
The idea of sending a text that says, “I quit. I’m not coming in today” and then heading off to the airport may sound tempting, especially when you know that you will be in a far off country and never see your past employer or co-workers again, but if you do that, you can kiss goodbye to any goodwill you may have built while working there.
How to Write a Formal Resignation Email
Quitting your job is actually a two-step process. You need to inform your boss in person, and then, you’ll need to send a formal resignation email to your boss and the HR department.
Writing the resignation email is the easiest part – and we’ve written out three templates below that you can copy and paste if you want to use them. Or, if you want to write your own, here are a couple of tips about writing resignation emails.
1. Clearly state the date you intend to leave the company.
Write the date in the first sentence or paragraph so your employer can quickly find it. The date should be formatted like this: March 22, 2021.
2. Keep your email to the point.
You already did the hard work of telling your boss in person that you are leaving. The most important points of the email are that you are resigning from your position and that you are leaving on a specific date. Now you just need to send it over to HR and your boss so they have a record of it.
3. Say something kind in the email.
I usually do this by expressing gratitude for the opportunities I had to learn, grow, and develop my career, or to thank them for the trust they showed in me. I’ll usually end the email by saying that I look forward to seeing what the company does in the future.
4. Sign off.
End your email with terms such as Best Regards or Sincerely, and sign your name.
Those are the basics of writing a professional and to the point resignation letter. In my resignation letter, I included that I was leaving to travel the world, but you do not have to include that in yours if you don’t want to.
Here are three email resignation templates we have written for you that you can use. Simply copy and paste these into your email and swap out the filler text.
That’s it – you’re now ready to quit your job and start your epic adventure!
Share with us below how your experience went quitting your job to travel the world!