Geographic Arbitrage and an Early Retirement Preview

Geographic Arbitrage and an Early Retirement Preview

I think the shock really hit about halfway through the flight.

Although the strong smells of drying fish, the weird food, and the jet lag made the previous few days in Hong Kong unique, it wasn’t until we boarded the regional Chinese plane to Wenzhou that a bit of panic started to set in.

Hong Kong

At first, it was a normal flight and we were excited to get to the place that would become our new home for the next three months. As we sat on the flight though, the Chinese man next to us began hacking up a lung (possibly two) and depositing said lung(s) onto the floor of the aircraft. He wasn’t inconspicuous about it either. Flight attendants would walk by in the middle of these extremely gross episodes, or just afterwards when he would use his shoes to spread his “gift” into the carpet of the aircraft, and nobody even batted an eyelid. It was then that I knew China was going to be an experience I would never forget.

The next 24 hours intensified my culture shock and left me wondering why I couldn’t just be a “normal” American who was content with working during the week and having a few beers with friends over the weekend.

From thinking we were going to die during the drive from the airport to worrying that everyone staring at us was out to get us or that everything that we ate would result in food poisoning, it was quite a stressful first few days, to say the least.

Once we settled in though, we realized that the driving, although very crazy and scary at first, actually worked and made sense after a while, the people staring at us were usually friendly and just curious (it’s not often that people in less-touristy parts of China see a 6-foot-tall, blue-eyed American and blonde-haired, blue-eyed Scottish girl), and the food, although not being 100% agreeable with our western stomachs, wasn’t going to kill us.

Our three months in China in 2009 ended up being a life-changing experience and we’ve been hoping to go back to Asia ever since. Luckily, we don’t have to wait much longer…

Thailand

On January 6th, Jill and I fly from Prague, Czech Republic to Bangkok, Thailand (part of a ridiculous $277 error fare I booked from USA to Europe to Asia).

We will spend some time in Bangkok, travel to Cambodia, Vietnam, and Malaysia, and then settle down in Chiang Mai, Thailand for at least a month. During our time in Chiang Mai, we plan to make a few trips to the border regions to volunteer (Jill will be using her optometry skills to provide eye care and I’ll hopefully be able to tag along as well). Finally, we’ll head to the islands for a bit before flying back to Scotland in March.

Itinerary

In case any of you will be in the same places as us and want to meet up for a drink or something, here’s our tentative itinerary:

London: Jan 1st – 4th
Prague: Jan 4th – 6th
Bangkok: Jan 7th – 12th
Siem Reap: Jan 12th – 15th
Ho Chi Minh: Jan 15th – 18th
Kuala Lumpur: Jan 18th – 21st
Chiang Mai: Jan 21st – Feb 20th
TBD: Feb 20th – Mar 6th

Early Retirement Preview

As I mentioned in the Power of Quitting article, I have continued working for my American employer since moving to Scotland. It’s actually been working out great and I plan to continue after returning from Thailand but I will be taking two months of unpaid leave while we’re in Asia.

I look forward to testing the early-retirement waters without actually quitting my job so I’ll treat my time in Asia as a trial run to see how it goes.

Geographic Arbitrage

I plan to track all of my expenses in each of the countries we visit so that I can determine how much of an impact geographic arbitrage could have on someone’s journey to FI.

The idea behind geographic arbitrage is that you earn money in a strong currency (like the US Dollar) and then spend money in a weaker currency (like the Thai Baht). For those of us who can work from anywhere (or who have investments and/or side businesses that earn money regardless of where we are), moving somewhere with a weaker currency could drastically reduce the duration of your journey to FI.

Why You Should Move Abroad

After thinking about my time in China and also the last few months transitioning back to Scotland, I realized that moving abroad could be a huge boost to someone’s FI journey for the following reasons:

  • Geographic Arbitrage – Maintain the same standard of living while spending significantly less
  • Prioritization of Belongings – When packing for a trip, you figure out what you actually need and realize how much “stuff” you don’t
  • Reduction of Belongings – If you move abroad permanently, like we did, it forces you to get rid of pretty much everything you don’t actively use
  • Minimalism – When you go through the process of reducing your belongings to just a few checked bags, you’ll never want to buy anything ever again (trust me)
  • Appreciation – If you feel like the world’s unfair because you can’t get the latest iPhone, go live in a third-world country for a bit and that will never happen again
  • Responsibility – Once you realize how hard others have to work just to survive, you’ll feel a greater responsibility to use your money wisely and not squander it away
  • Motivation – Experiencing the world will motivate you even more to escape the cubical as quickly as possible

Facebook/Twitter

I plan to post pictures and prices of things we buy/eat/drink during our travels so if you’re interested in seeing how far a dollar goes in Southeast Asia, follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

Tagline

Since I won’t be working while I’m gone, I plan to use the extra time to make some improvements around here. One thing that’s been missing since I started this site is a tagline. I realize that when new visitors arrive here, they may not know what the site is all about at first (what the hell is a fientist?).

I think a good tagline will help with that but I’m not sure what it should be. Since you know why you read my stuff and what makes my site unique, I figured I’d ask you!

What’s a catchy sentence that would perfectly sum up the Mad Fientist? Ideally it will have “financial independence” in it (to explain the FI in fientist) but I’m not sure what else. If you have any ideas, please leave your suggestions in the comments below!

Contest

To sweeten the deal and to thank you for your input (and to offset some of my business income with some additional 2014 business expenses, haha), I decided to do another contest.

How to Enter

To enter, simply leave a tagline in the comments below or vote for someone else’s tagline by replying to their comment.

The contest will end at 11:59PM EST tomorrow (12/23), at which point I will pick two winners: the person who suggested the best tagline (as judged by me) and then someone else randomly from all of the comments (that means if you suggest a tagline, you’ll have two chances to win and could potentially win both prizes).

Prizes

Each winner will be able to choose one of the following two prizes:

1) Enrollment in J.D. Roth’s Get Rich Slowly course.

While I haven’t completed the full course, I did read the Be Your Own CFO guide that comes with the course and it was excellent so I think this would be a perfect prize for someone in the earlier stages of pursuing financial independence.

2) The following three books:

Happy Holidays

This is my last post of the year so I just wanted to thank all of you for reading, commenting, emailing, and making my own personal journey to financial independence much more interesting and enjoyable.

I have some very exciting things planned for this site in 2015 so I look forward to seeing you back here in January!

Related Post


Want to achieve FI sooner?

  1. Sign up for a free Personal Capital account to start tracking your net worth, monthly spending, etc.
  2. Enter those numbers into the FI Laboratory and begin charting your progress to financial independence
  3. Download the spreadsheet I used on my own journey to financial independence to determine which expenses are delaying your progress the most
  4. Reduce or eliminate those expenses and achieve FI even sooner!

105 comments for “Geographic Arbitrage and an Early Retirement Preview

  1. December 22, 2014 at 9:02 am

    Excited for you and Jill that the big trip is here! Looking forward to the updates :)

    If all goes well, maybe we’ll be able to meet up with you in Scotland this coming summer — will keep you updated.

    I think the word “experiment(s)” needs to be included in the tagline, especially with your logo. Maybe something as simple as:

    Experiments in Financial Independence

    • The Mad Fientist
      December 22, 2014 at 9:08 am

      Thanks a lot, Brad! That’d be great if you and the family are able to make it over to Scotland. We’ll be back by then so definitely keep me posted.

      Excellent tagline suggestion, by the way! I’ve been banging my head against this thing for days and you come out and beat all my previous attempts on your first shot!

      • December 22, 2014 at 9:39 am

        My one shot of creativity for the year!! haha :) Glad you like it — I think it pretty succinctly captures what’s going on at the MF site. I’m sure you’ll have another 50+ suggestions from your readers and I’m excited to see what they come up with.

        I for sure will keep you updated; if not 2015, then 2016 for certain if you guys are still there. Laura has always wanted to visit Scotland, so it would be perfect.

        If we do a summer Europe trip I think we’d ideally want to travel some and then actually “live” somewhere for 3-4 weeks. I think our girls would really benefit from that as compared to just being a nonstop tourist.

        • The Mad Fientist
          December 22, 2014 at 9:53 am

          I’m really excited to see what everyone comes up with as well, especially after such a promising start.

          I imagine we’ll be here in 2015 and 2016 so hopefully you can make it out at some point. Maybe we’ll even have a place of our own by then so you guys can stay with us!

          “Living” somewhere for a month is definitely the way to go. Where in Europe do you think you’d settle down?

    • carl
      December 22, 2014 at 10:02 am

      I like Brad’s “Experiments in Financial Independence!”

      but how about “Financial Independence – You Can Too!”

    • Tamara
      December 22, 2014 at 10:24 am

      I like this tagline because it works for both before and after achieving financial independence.

    • December 22, 2014 at 10:34 am

      I was just scrolling down to start leaving some tagline ideas and of course saw this one. I am pretty sure the work here is done – awesome tagline, Brad. It captures a definition of FI, it relates to your pun and logo – and it also is indicative of the style of posts you write here – everything from the Guinea Pig experiments to the little hacking experiments with HSA, Tax Loss Harvesting, etc.

    • Liz S
      December 22, 2014 at 11:18 am

      Suggesting a slight tweak on this theme to go along with your “guinea pig” series: “A Guinea Pig’s Experiments in Optimizing Financial Independence”

    • micha
      December 22, 2014 at 4:41 pm

      I was going to suggest “An Experimental Approach To Financial Independence” but it looks like Brad beat me to it, so I’ll vote for him.

    • JT
      December 22, 2014 at 5:20 pm

      I totally agree, the use of the word “Experiments” is brilliant.

    • DanielH
      December 23, 2014 at 1:48 am

      I was thinking “Experimental Financial Independence”, but yours is better.

  2. December 22, 2014 at 9:36 am

    Here’s my tagline for the Madfientist:

    “Creating wealth faster and financial independence sooner, one experiment at a time.”

    • The Mad Fientist
      December 22, 2014 at 9:55 am

      I like the idea of “reaching FI sooner” because that’s what I hope to accomplish with my research and writing.

    • Ryan
      December 23, 2014 at 2:34 pm

      I certainly support this tagline. Definitely piques my interest!

  3. Lisa
    December 22, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Thanks for the post! I’m a regular reader, but I’ve never commented. :) I was thinking “The Science of Financial Independence,” but I already like Brad’s suggestion better!

    • The Mad Fientist
      December 22, 2014 at 10:00 am

      Thanks for finally commenting, Lisa, and great suggestion!

  4. December 22, 2014 at 9:41 am

    “Slow travel experiments across the globe through Financial Independence” (and early retirement?)

    I tried to use “globetrotters” but sounded a bit hokey to me. The early retirement is optional.

  5. marvin mcdude
    December 22, 2014 at 9:45 am

    First, thanks. Your blog has taught me so much, and I love the FI Laboratory.

    Don’t overthink the tagline. Could simply be, “The Science of Financial Independence”… or “The Wacky Science of Financial Independence”.

    • Rob
      December 22, 2014 at 9:54 am

      I was going to suggest “The Science Behind Financial Independence”. Then I read some of the suggestions and saw Marvin had a very similar idea, so I’m feeling less original now. Regardless, thanks and hope you enjoy your trip!

      • Hanna
        December 22, 2014 at 3:15 pm

        Simple is best :)

    • Nick from Denver.
      December 22, 2014 at 11:33 pm

      I like the “science of financial independence.” It seems to explain the name well. My only tweek would be “the mad science of financial independence” thanks for the good work. Happy Xmas and new year.

  6. Jared
    December 22, 2014 at 9:51 am

    “Tinkering with the science of money in the pursuit of financial independence.”

  7. zut
    December 22, 2014 at 9:51 am

    “One mad scientists study of how savings and time equals financial independence.”

  8. Brett
    December 22, 2014 at 10:04 am

    Can I suggest two? Really it’s just two wordings of the same one. Here it goes:

    “The science of Financial Independence”

    or

    “A scientific approach to Financial Independence”

    • Marilyn
      December 22, 2014 at 11:29 am

      “The Science of Financial Independence” Exactly!

      Or a variation on the theme…”The Mad, Mad Science to Financial Independence”

      • George
        December 22, 2014 at 11:32 am

        I vote for “the science of financial independence”…that was what I was about to post. Brett, nice job beating me to it haha

        • Jason
          December 22, 2014 at 12:59 pm

          Small variation, “the science behind financial independence”

  9. Lou
    December 22, 2014 at 10:05 am

    “Optimizing the path to financial independence, one experiment at a time”

    (I really like the ‘one experiment at a time’ that Even-Steven suggested above… so swiped it :) )

    • jen
      December 22, 2014 at 4:24 pm

      I like this one a lot. Especially the use of ‘optimizing’. Great word.

  10. Amy
    December 22, 2014 at 10:15 am

    Love reading your blog posts and look forward to the travel updates!
    I really like the first tag line suggestion…”experiments in financial independence”. You could add something to the effect of “applied” or “successful” experiments in financial independence to it to clarify that your trials are working for you. I mean, It lives!!!!, right? (from Frankenstein). Maybe there’s a better scientific term for an experiment that provides positive results. Good luck in the new year!

  11. Derek
    December 22, 2014 at 10:18 am

    Sounds like a great trip. I’m looking forward to your Geo-Arbitrage posts.

    Here’s another tagline for you: “Accelerating Financial Independence.”

    or… “Accelerating Financial Independence One Experiment At A Time.”

  12. Tamara
    December 22, 2014 at 10:19 am

    “Financial Independence through calculated optimization of every dollar”

    This is why I read.

  13. Dyk
    December 22, 2014 at 10:23 am

    “Experimenting with the catalysts for Financial Independence”

  14. Eric (brooklynguy)
    December 22, 2014 at 10:26 am

    Sounds exciting — congrats on starting this new chapter!

    I already like some of the other suggestions better, but this is how I think of your site:

    “The research and development center for financial independence.”

    • December 22, 2014 at 10:30 am

      Damn it. This is much better than what I suggested.

    • Michele
      December 22, 2014 at 11:12 am

      Yup. I agree. Your site is a R & D illuminating innovative process to fundamental financial freedom.

  15. December 22, 2014 at 10:50 am

    Thank you for all your great content this year. Hopefully there will be even more in 2015.

    How about “An alternative, scientific approach to expediting financial independence” for your tagline.

  16. German
    December 22, 2014 at 11:06 am

    Love reading your blog. Though I am not US-based (UK), I find your posts insightful and informative.

    My tagline idea:
    “Concocting amazing new experiments to help accelerate the path to Financial Independence”

  17. DB
    December 22, 2014 at 11:47 am

    Anyone reference thermo yet?
    “Second law of frugality” where d$ is always positive (aka “d$+”)

  18. James+D
    December 22, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Tagline suggestion – “The mad math behind reaching Financial Independence”. I can’t think of a great overall message, but I like “mad math” or including math in the tagline somehow since, to me, the difference between your blog and most other FI-related blogs is that you dive more deeply into the actual math behind optimizing your finances.

  19. Mike P
    December 22, 2014 at 11:53 am

    How about “concocting a life of financial independence”?

  20. Patrick
    December 22, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    “Testing the Financial Independence Hypothesis”

  21. Lou
    December 22, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Couple more thoughts:

    ‘Financial independence through experiments in income optimization’

    ‘Financial independence through the Scientific Method’

  22. Victoria
    December 22, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    Hi, I am a newbie. I hope that by following your blog I can find early retirement soon, this cubicle is just too small for my wings.

    Thank you!

  23. Amanda M.
    December 22, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    “Dr. Frankenstein’s approach to Financial Independence”

    I’ve been toying with the idea of complete retirement overseas, but I’m unsure where I would feel most comfortable. I may just need to take a page from your book (blog) and take a few months to travel to the ~15 places that I’m considering. I should probably whittle it down to 4 or 5 before doing that, though.

  24. December 22, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    “Financial Independence – Method and Madness”

    • Marilyn
      December 22, 2014 at 1:53 pm

      Love Neha’s tag line. Concise yet playful.

  25. Toy
    December 22, 2014 at 1:32 pm

    Financial Independence: What happens when you stop caring about what others think.

  26. December 22, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    Very excited! What about “Tax Strategy + Optimization = Accelerated Financial Independence” could switch out strategy for Simulation?

    Good luck to everyone!

  27. Mark AW
    December 22, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    I’m just going to mash all the good ideas in with something new.

    “THE fiNANCIAL SCIentist: achieving financial independence, one experiment at a time”

    Thanks for all your great work and ideas. Enjoy your slow travel. Happy holidays and new year!

  28. Gus
    December 22, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    “or The Thoughtful Science of Fiscal Self- Reliance”

    :)

  29. Justin
    December 22, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    “The compound effect to Financial Independence”

    thought of some ideas relating science and currency that may fit well with the theme of the blog. I am not sure how to upload an image to the comment box however, a picture with the compound ATP “the molecular unit of currency” that is converted to ADP with an arrow showing the energy product “compound interest” in the form of money or coins.

  30. Kevin K
    December 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    “Hacks and Research to Speed the Journey to Financial Independence”

  31. Julie
    December 22, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    Financial Independence on Auto Pilot

  32. Leo
    December 22, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    I suggest a tagline along the lines of:
    “Models and Experiments for Faster Financial Independence”

  33. Adam
    December 22, 2014 at 3:12 pm

    I like “Experiments in Financial Independence”. Looks like someone else above already suggested it. Or “Lifestyle experiments in financial independence”.

    You’ll love Chang Mai!

    Cheers,
    Adam

  34. LizWithLime
    December 22, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    madFIentist: A Mad Dash to (Strategically Achieving) Financial Independence

    I just want to thank you so much for all of your efforts on this site. Listening to your podcast interviews on my runs earlier this year has opened my eyes & inspired me to ramp up my savings. (What was I waiting for!?) I’m a long-time Roth IRA fan, but have since adjusted my strategy to focus on traditional retirement contributions instead. It’s allowing me to save a greater percentage of my income. After all, I can always figure out smart withdrawal strategies in the years to come. I’ve also maxed out my HSA contribution for next year.

    Annnnd, although I don’t have the income right now to complete a Mega Backdoor Roth, I called my company’s 401k Plan to ask if I can complete in-service withdrawals to immediately rollover money from after-tax contributions to IRAs. Turns out I can! It’s an even greater incentive to save more & start taking advantage! (Ironically enough, when I called the rep at Fidelity, she started rattling off loan opportunities. I had to politely explain I didn’t need the money; I was just asking about future strategizing :-D). Congratulations on your journey so far. I can’t wait to hear about what happens next.

  35. Kate
    December 22, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    Safe travels and joy for your upcoming travels…
    …my tag line contribution…

    Madfientist-
    Experiments in financial independence-Making the unknown known through observation and action

  36. jen
    December 22, 2014 at 4:20 pm

    Here’s mine…

    Experimenting with math to shorten the path to financial independence.

    Somewhat similar to some of the others above but I decided to work on mine before reading everyone else’s. There are some great ones up there!

    Fun contest. Thanks!

  37. JT
    December 22, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    I love the detailed way you cover your stuff. Lots of excellent suggestions above. I thought the uses of the words “mad” and “Experiment” were awesome. Two that came to mind for me:

    “Mad Financial Experiments for the Independence obsessed”

    or a slight variation of Brad’s popular tagline from the top

    “Mad Experiments in Financial Independence”

    I keep wanting to swap the “in” for a “for”, but it just doesn’t seem to come out quite right. Either way, good luck in finding what you’re looking for and keep writing!

  38. Jen Bowen
    December 22, 2014 at 5:28 pm

    There are so many GREAT tagline ideas here already, but here’s one more in the hat:

    “Financial Independence is Elemental”

  39. Mark
    December 22, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    “Control your destiny by achieving financial independence!”

  40. December 22, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    What about “The Alchemy for Financial Independence”?
    This will match well with the site’s logo where your are brewing $. Also, it fits well with FI Laboratory and Lab Rat posts.

    By the way, thanks for the great site.

  41. December 22, 2014 at 8:18 pm

    I vote for Brad’s. Concise and direct, while also being a tad punny.

  42. December 22, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    Also – did you ever make it to FL this fall? Disappointed we didn’t get a chance to buy you that beer!

    • The Mad Fientist
      January 28, 2015 at 3:54 am

      We did make it down to Florida but sadly not for as long as we had planned to. The sale of our house in Vermont fell through (luckily, we found other buyers and closed right before Christmas) so we ended up spending more time in Vermont and less time in Florida.

      We’re planning to go back there to visit this fall so hopefully we can get together then! Are you going to be going to FinCon this year?

      Hope you’ve been doing well!

  43. Tim
    December 22, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Love your site, lots of great tag line suggestions above but here is mine!

    “Discovering the shocking simply truth behind financial independence”

  44. Jonah
    December 22, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    Mad FIentist: Using Statistics to Accelerate Early Financial Independence

  45. Joe
    December 22, 2014 at 10:32 pm

    Hello MAD Fientist.

    I really enjoy your blog, site… its inspirational and informative.

    here is a suggestion for a Tag Line :—-

    “ Methods, Analysis and life Designs (MAD) all focused on one goal : Financial Independence”

  46. Chris
    December 22, 2014 at 10:32 pm

    Hey Mad,

    Great idea on the contest…here’s my submission!

    It seems like you are more about optimization..also known as Engineering. So how about:

    “Engineering Your Escape to Financial Independence”

  47. Prob8
    December 22, 2014 at 11:53 pm

    Happy Holidays, MF! Looking forward to more posts next year.

    As for taglines, Brad’s is good. He gets my vote.

    If you decide on a lab rat theme . . . “A systematic approach to escaping the rat race”

  48. Alexi
    December 23, 2014 at 2:29 am

    I also love Brad’s suggestion.

    My initial thought was:

    “The Financial independence incubater”

  49. Mr JT
    December 23, 2014 at 6:52 am

    The Mad Fientist: Where Financial Independence Meets Science

    The Mad Fientist: He came from earth with a strange idea called financial independence. He mixed in one part science and he became “The Mad Fientist”.

    The Mad Fientist: adventures in financial independence, travel hacking and geoarbitrage

    Apologies to others if you thought of any of these first.. I brainstorm best without looking at other results.

  50. Yabusame
    December 23, 2014 at 7:12 am

    I can’t wait for you to get back to Scotland and start writing articles from a UK perspective (selfish I know ;-))

    Here’s my entry:
    “Using science to attain Financial Independence”

  51. Sandy
    December 23, 2014 at 7:26 am

    Much more then just a scientific approach to Financial Independence.

  52. CK
    December 23, 2014 at 8:22 am

    See your future…FI your future

  53. 13owie
    December 23, 2014 at 8:37 am

    “Experiments in Reaching Financial Independence Sooner”, w/props to Brad & Steve.

  54. DirkD
    December 23, 2014 at 9:08 am

    Madfientist – concocting a financially independent life.

    Thanks for all your help in 2014, and enjoy your travels! Asia can be a wonderful place.

  55. eric
    December 23, 2014 at 10:27 am

    “Exploring the frontiers of financial independence”

    “Scientific exploration of financial independence”

    No need to repeat “mad” but maybe good to have a reference to science.

  56. David
    December 23, 2014 at 10:51 am

    I too like Brad’s “Experiments in Financial Independence!” It says a lot quickly and clearly. I also really liked the suggestions of “Financial Independence – Method and Madness” and “The Science of Financial Independence.”

    Here are a few more I thought of that you may want to consider:

    “An Independent Study of Financial Independence”

    “Proving the Theory of Financial Independence One Experiment at a Time”

    “Field Guide to Financial Independence or “Lab Guide to Financial Independence”

    “Extreme Experiments to Rapid Financial Independence”

    “The Lab of Financial Independence”

    Best of luck with the tagline and thanks for everything you do!

  57. December 23, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Hey Brandon, nothing like some educational incentives to get me to comment! I’ve been following your blog since I first heard you on The Radical Personal Finance podcast. I skimmed through all the comments to make sure I wouldn’t repeat anyone else’s tagline suggestion.

    Here’s mine: The Mad Fientist — In the financial independence lab, testing hypotheses, and showing you the results!

  58. December 23, 2014 at 11:48 am

    Brandon,

    I’m sure you have a good one up in the comments but I thought I’d enter the contest before it ended!

    How about, “Financial Independence Through Science Bitch!” Like a Jesse Pinkman angle haha.

    Keep up the great work and enjoy your mini retirement!

    Steve

  59. December 23, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    I think what sets you apart is all the tax info you provide and optimizing it.

    So I wanted or thought your name should include that.

    “The scientific approach to successful tax optimization and early FI”

    ” tax savings incubator ”

    I also think you should pass on wacky as your site abd writing doesn’t strike me as silly at all.

    Thanks to you front loading 401k next year

    Also you got so many ideas. That’s going to be work sorting out. Good luck

  60. Heidi
    December 23, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    I’m a newby but love the site- thank you! Can’t wait to read more about your trip-have fun!

    Here’s mine:

    Rat race + scientific experiments =Financial Independence

    …..and I vote for Even+Steven

  61. December 23, 2014 at 11:10 pm

    The Mad FIentist — cooking up Financial Independence, one experiment at a time.

  62. CMM
    December 24, 2014 at 1:54 am

    Lots of great suggestions above! It’s after the deadline, but thought I would comment anyway:

    Devising (or testing) uncommon approaches to Financial Independence
    Scientific design of Financial Independence
    Using the Scientific Method to achieve Financial Independence

  63. Heidi
    December 24, 2014 at 2:27 am

    I’m a newby and couldn’t tear myself away from site – love the contest for educational party favors too. Thank you…. Can’t wait to learn more.

    I’ll cast a vote for Even+Steven tag line (simple, understandable and would make me want to read more)

  64. The Mad Fientist
    December 24, 2014 at 5:26 am

    I just want to thank everyone for making such incredible suggestions! It’s too hard to pick a winner right now so I’ll need to let all of your suggestions marinate in my mind for the day and then I’ll come back tonight and will try to pick my favorite.

    You guys are amazing! Thank you!

  65. Valerie
    December 24, 2014 at 5:31 am

    Exploring Financial Independence

  66. December 24, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    Sorry guys little late. Heres some more ideas!
    Mad Fientist- Your Labratory For A Financial Independence Experiment
    Mad Fientist- Your Lab For A Financial Independence Experiment
    Mad Fientist- Your Lab For Conducting A Financial Independence Experiment

  67. The Mad Fientist
    December 25, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    Merry Christmas, everyone!

    Even after thinking about it more, I still couldn’t settle on a favorite tagline so I decided to just pick all my favorites and then use random.org to pick a winner from those randomly. I then used random.org again to pick a second winner out of all the comments and here are the results…

    I’m happy to announce that BrooklynGuy and Marvin are the two winners so check your emails and let me know which of the prizes you would like!

    Thank all of you again for your great suggestions. I’m still not sure what the exact tagline for the site will be but now I have a bunch of great ideas to draw from so I imagine it will end up being an amalgamation of a lot of the suggestions here.

    Happy holidays and speak to you again soon!

  68. December 26, 2014 at 2:18 am

    Welcome to the other hemisphere! Sounds like 2015 is off to a great start! Feel free to pass through Taipei

    Sad to say I missed the deadline, but here are a few tagline ideas:
    “Putting cash in your flask”
    “Proof that time is money”
    “Your Solution to Financial Success”

    Have a great trip!

  69. December 26, 2014 at 3:58 am

    Congratulations on the big move. We’re contemplating some geographic arbitrage in Buenos Aires, but I wonder how much of the current currency situation is a long term thing, or just a short term advantage for those with dollars.

  70. Alex
    December 26, 2014 at 6:32 am

    Looks like an epic trip you’ve got lined up! I’m down in London (from Edinburgh) in the new year; would be great to meet up for a pint. I lived there for a few years, so I could give a few recommendations of things to do if you’re interested.

    Funnily enough I’m leaving Scotland in March/April to move to the States. Seems we’re swapping places!

    • The Mad Fientist
      January 28, 2015 at 4:00 am

      Hey Alex, sorry I’m only replying to this comment now. With the holidays and all the traveling, I fell way behind on emails and comments so I’m sorry we missed you while we were in London.

      Let me know if you want to grab a pint or two in Scotland though before you head over to the States. We’ll be back around the 9th of March so hopefully we’ll get there before you head out!

  71. K
    December 28, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    Scientific methods to accelerate early FI

  72. Tim
    December 30, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    I like “Experiments in Financial Independence” as previously suggested by Brad

  73. Dave
    December 31, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    “A Mad Scientist Experiments his way to Financial Independence”

    or “Changing the paradigm: taking a Mad Scientist approach to Financial Independence”

  74. January 1, 2015 at 7:54 am

    How about “Exploring the boundries of Financial Independence”

  75. Kevin
    January 11, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    I am far too late for this, but how about “Using the Scientific Method to Unlock the Financial Independence Formula” or “Unlocking the Formula to Financial Independence”.

  76. January 14, 2015 at 10:21 am

    I know I’m late, but how about “Mad about Financial Independence”, if this wins I think I deserve something right? Second choice is “Mad Fientist solves Financial Independence” Either way let me know if it stinks or it rocks. Looking to reach Europe one day to tour a few countries.

  77. KiloRomeo
    January 21, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    Having just returned from Thailand, I know you’re going to have a great time. Feel free to reach out if you need any suggestions for things to do while in Chiangmai or if you return to Bangkok.

  78. Patty
    February 1, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    I too am late to the party but my entry would’ve been “Grok the Elements of Financial Independence”.

  79. March 31, 2015 at 4:00 pm

    I do not have any tagline suggestions to add to the mix (and, like Patty, I am late to the party). But I love reading about your adventures in FI.

  80. Joe W
    April 1, 2015 at 10:41 am

    I agree completely with your section entitled : “Why You Should Move Abroad”. I am from USA and I spent the better part of 2014 in The Philippines and some of 2013 as well. I think everyone should experience these things. I learned so much from my trips. Thanks for sharing !

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